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2013 vintage report overview

Vintage 2013

In its annual vintage survey, the Winemakers' Federation of Australia estimated that the 2013 vintage overall increased by 11% compared with 2012, and was the highest since 2008 at 1.83 million tonnes in total. This intake was 100,000 tonnes above the average for the past six years of 1.73 million tonnes and 170,000 tonnes higher than the 2102 crush of 1.66 million tonnes.

The increased crop is attributable to an absence of major events such as disease or flooding which affected the previous vintages, as well as the availability of sufficient water for irrigation. In the warm inland regions, conditions were generally good for growing - despite the heat. Conditions early in the season are thought to have contributed to a good growing season. 2013 could not be described as an 'easy' vintage. The Bureau of Meteorology reported that the 2013 summer had been the hottest on record and it was also one of the driest. In addition to heatwaves across south-eastern Australia, there were bushfires in the southern parts of SA and Victoria and very heavy rains along the coast, and extending some way inland, from south-east Queensland almost to Sydney. The sustained warm dry periods produced unusual ripening rates and patterns and an early and very condensed harvest in many regions. However, the impact of the hot and dry conditions was reduced by the availability of water in the irrigated areas and generally good winter rains.

In 2013 the crush of red and white varieties both increased compared with 2012, but the increase was much greater for reds. Their contribution to the total crush increased to nearly 52% while whites fell to 48% - with reds accounting for 946,000 tonnes and whites for 888,000 tonnes. The top three red varieties were Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot - together accounting for 86% of the red crush. However, the share of the crush accounted for by these varieties was reduced compared with 2012, with the tonnage of minor varieties including Mataro, Tempranillo, Durif, Sangiovese and Barbera increasing by a greater percentage than the tonnage of the top five varieties. Dolcetto was the only variety to show a significant decrease in tonnage as a percentage of its 2012 crush. In the whites, Chardonnay dominated with 45% of the white crush - the next highest contributor being Sauvignon Blanc with 11%, with Semillon falling further behind at 9%. While the red crush increased overall by 14%, the white crush only increased by 7%. Muscat Blanc more than doubled its 2012 crush, while Muscadelle and Viognier also showed moderate increases. Chenin Blanc, Palomino/Pedro, Riesling, Semillon and Traminer all showed small reductions in crush against the trend, while Doradillo was down by 50% (although from a small base).

Source: Winemakers’ Federation of Australia, Vintage Report, July 2013

Australian winegrape intake, 2013

Variety

2012

2013

2013
% share

2012-13
% change

Red Grapes

Barbera

359

479

34%

0%

Cabernet Franc

1,356

1,450

7%

0%

Cabernet Sauvignon

218,964

249,689

14%

14%

Dolcetto

1,479

966

-35%

0%

Durif

3,558

4,923

38%

0%

Grenache

14,514

15,857

9%

1%

Malbec

2,501

2,490

0%

0%

Mataro

5,296

6,823

29%

0%

Merlot

124,676

131,575

6%

7%

Muscat a Petit Grains

1,262

1,239

-2%

0%

Petit Verdot

19,418

22,318

15%

1%

Pinot Noir

33,647

41,726

24%

2%

Ruby Cabernet

10,543

13,206

25%

1%

Sangiovese

3,739

4,856

30%

0%

Shiraz

377,891

432,340

14%

24%

Tarrango

598

703

18%

0%

Tempranillo

2,785

4,736

70%

0%

Other red varieties

6,978

10,209

46%

1%

Total Red Grapes

829,564

945,586

14%

52%

White Grapes

Chardonnay

371,621

397,239

7%

22%

Chenin Blanc

7,090

6,799

-4%

0%

Colombard

60,982

66,852

10%

4%

Crouchen

1,834

1,835

0%

0%

Doradillo

1,058

527

-50%

0%

Marsanne

1,498

1,621

8%

0%

Muscadelle

378

484

28%

0%

Muscat Blanc

6,260

13,414

114%

1%

Muscat Gordo Blanco

61,345

70,564

15%

4%

Palomino & Pedro Ximenes

182

169

-7%

0%

Pinot Gris & Pinot Grigio

57,082

62,228

9%

3%

Riesling

32,772

31,310

-4%

2%

Sauvignon Blanc

88,085

98,212

11%

5%

Semillon

82,385

77,187

-6%

4%

Traminer

10,534

9,543

-9%

1%

Trebbiano

427

437

2%

0%

Verdelho

10,935

11,582

6%

1%

Viognier

8,739

11,274

29%

1%

Other white varieties

25,230

26,334

4%

1%

Total White Grapes

828,436

887,613

7%

48%

Total All Varieties

1,658,000

1,833,199

11%

100%

Source: WFA (2013)

Winegrape crush by year

Year

Tonnes

% change

1983

440,392

1984

518,929

17.8%

1985

598,389

15.3%

1986

520,320

-13.0%

1987

511,501

-1.7%

1988

485,360

-5.1%

1989

625,326

28.8%

1990

602,591

-3.6%

1991

538,961

-10.6%

1992

635,506

17.9%

1993

626,187

-1.5%

1994

777,373

24.1%

1995

629,833

-19.0%

1996

883,318

40.2%

1997

797,992

-9.7%

1998

975,669

22.3%

1999

1,125,840

15.4%

2000

1,145,238

1.7%

2001

1,423,950

24.3%

2002

1,605,846

12.8%

2003

1,398,528

-12.9%

2004

1,917,238

37.1%

2005*

1,925,490

0.4%

2006

1,901,560

-1.2%

2007

1,397,350

-26.5%

2008

1,831,523

31.1%

2009

1,732,506

-5.4%

2010

1,603,012

-7.5%

2011

1,602,394

0.0%

2012

1,620,510

1.1%

2013

1,748,363

7.9%

Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics, 1329.0. Note: ABS final figures will differ from crush estimates presented by the Winemakers' Federation of Australia. * Record year.