Wine

China’s wine production drops to record low

China’s wine production has dropped to a record now in 2019, which is less than half of the production volume recorded in 2017, the latest figures released from the country have shown.

China’s wine production has dropped to a record now in 2019, which is less than half of the production volume recorded in 2017, the latest figures released from the country have shown.

China’s wine production from January to December last year plunged by 10.2% over previous year to 4.51 million hectolitres, according Chinese research institute Chinabgao, based on data collected by the institute and from China’s National Bureau of Statistics.

The downturn also followed a sharp decline in production seen in 2018, which arrived at 6.29 million hectolitres based on data released from the same institute, adding more bad news for the country’s wine industry when its imported wines and consumption had also slowed due to economic slowdown during the year.

This would make it the smallest production volume in recent history and less than half of 2017’s production volume, which was 10.01 million hectolitres.

The data released however did not show the performance of major regions or what had led to the drop.

Vines in Ningxia
Vines in Ningxia, considered a premier region of wine production inside China

In Shandong in eastern China, China’s biggest wine production region by volume, monsoon in summertime is often cited by local vignerons as a leading challenge.

In other key parts of central and northwestern China such as Ningxia and Shanxi, frost during budding and summer flooding are main threats to grape yields.

In Grace Vineyard’s 2019 vintage report for instance, the family-owned winery operating in both Shanxi and Ningxia, it said in Ningxia the vineyards experienced drought, heavy downpour and hailstorm while in Shanxi drought was a main threat, though it did not elaborate damages to production volume.

It’s worthy to note the Chinese figures differ from data released by OIV, which counted wine grape production as well grapes for other uses for the overall production.

As a result, OIV put China’s grape production in 2018 at 11.7 million tons.

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