South African wine growers overcame challenging climatic fluctuations to produce a quality crop about the same size as the previous year, according to the SA Wine Industry Information and Systems (SAWIS) and reported by the Vinpro consultation service.
“The 2011 season was characterised by considerable climatic fluctuations, especially unrelenting drought and heat throughout summer. What appeared to be a large crop early in the season, systematically shrunk, also due to cold conditions during flowering and a windy December,” Vinpro reported, adding that “Large-scale flood damage along the Orange River also impacted on the wine crop”.
“Despite all the challenges and setbacks, the industry is nevertheless pleased with the quality of the wines and the fact that the size of the crop will be about equal in size to that of 2010. The South African wine industry is able to buffer large fluctuations in overall crop size and quality thanks to the diversity of the respective cultivation areas.
“The 2011 wine grape crop is estimated at 1 279 017 tons according to the latest estimate (end of April) of the SA Wine Industry Information and Systems (Sawis). This is 1.4% more than the 2010 crop. With the exception of Orange River, Breedekloof and Worcester, all nine cultivation districts are expected to have bigger crops.”