SUMMARY OF FINDINGS
Estimates from the 2009 Vineyards Survey indicate that total wine grape production was down 8% from 2008, confirming industry expectations of a lower harvest.
AREA OF VINES
Wine grape growers cultivated 163 thousand hectares of vines for the 2009 season. The total bearing area for wine grapes was 157 thousand hectares, while the area not yet bearing was 5.3 thousand hectares. Red wine grape varieties comprised 61% of the total area of vines and 61% of the total bearing area.
Total wine grape production in 2009 was 1.7 million tonnes, a decrease from 1.8 million tonnes the previous year. South Australia remained the largest producing state with 748 thousand tonnes. New South Wales was the next largest producing state with 534 thousand tonnes, followed by Victoria with 329 thousand tonnes.
Red wine grape production (888 thousand tonnes) was higher than white wine grape production (796 thousand tonnes). South Australia was the highest red wine grape producing state with 52% (458 thousand tonnes) of total red wine grape production. New South Wales was the highest producer of white wine grapes with 37% (296 thousand tonnes) of total white wine grape production, closely followed by South Australia with 36% (290 thousand tonnes).
Three varieties of grapes accounted for 61% of all wine grape production: shiraz (394 thousand tonnes), chardonnay (384 thousand tonnes) and cabernet sauvignon (248 thousand tonnes). Shiraz accounted for 44% of all red wine grape production, while chardonnay accounted for 48% of all white wine production.