1329.0 - Australian Wine and Grape Industry, 2002  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 29/01/2003   
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January 29, 2003
Embargoed: 11:30 AM (AEST)

Australian wine exports exceptional in 2002: ABS

Exports of Australian produced wine achieved a new milestone in 2001-02, reaching 418.4 million litres in volume and $2,105.2 million in value. Other main wine and grape industry indicators also attained record levels, according to figures released today by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

Seasonal conditions in 2001-02 generally favoured both red and white grapes equally and resulted in exceptional quality. Grape yields generally increased in the warmer climate regions and declined in the cooler climate regions.

For the second consecutive year red grape production (893,131 tonnes) surpassed white grape production (860,757 tonnes) reinforcing shifts in consumer preferences.

Other findings include:
  • The total area of vines bearing grapes increased in all states by a combined 9.8% to 143,373 hectares, while the total area of vines not bearing grapes decreased by 13.8% to 15,221 hectares.
  • Grapegrowers harvested a record 1.8 million tonnes of grapes for all purposes in 2001-02, an increase of 13.4% on the previous year. The main grape varieties for winemaking were Shiraz (326,564 tonnes), Cabernet Sauvignon (257,223 tonnes), Chardonnay (256,328 tonnes) and Merlot (104,423 tonnes).
  • All states, except Tasmania, recorded increases in the tonnage of grapes harvested. New South Wales increased by 103,588 tonnes (29.7%), followed by a 74,428 tonne increase (16.9%) in Victoria and a 21,803 tonne increase (3.2%) in South Australia.
  • Winemakers produced an estimated 1,195.2 million litres of beverage wine, representing a 13.5% increase on last year's record of 1,052.9 million litres.
  • Inventories of Australian produced beverage wine owned by winemakers at 30 June 2002 increased 14.% to 1,570.1 million litres, with red/rosť table wine comprising of 58.6% of the total inventories.
  • The 2001 Census identified there were 14,480 people whose main job was in the manufacturing or blending of wine and 15,629 people whose main job was in grape-growing.
  • The United Kingdom was the major country of destination for exports of Australian wine, taking 201.8 million litres (48.2%), followed by the United States of America which received 93.1 million litres (22.2%).

More details are in Australian Wine and Grape Industry, 2002 (cat. no. 1329.0).