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Centsibility
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It's a wine crisis!

Winery
Okay, you can breathe a sigh of relief — there's not going to be a wine crisis, for consumers at least.

After a bumper crop in the grape harvest, smaller vineyards are finding it hard to keep from going into debt. Grape production in 2008 was up 39 percent, leading to a 27 million litre oversupply. That's 36 million extra bottles of wine.

President of New Zealand Grape Growers, Stuart Smith, said controlling supply is critical. There is concern producing too much wine will cheapen New Zealand wine in global markets, which the industry heavily relies on.

Unfortunately, for smaller vineyards, the oversupply of grapes only seems to have affected them. A report from Deloitte on the wine industry says wineries making less than $1 million annually have been losing an average of 32 percent of their revenue — about fives bottles of wine per case.

In a country with so many small businesses, it's a shame they are losing out yet again to bigger business. At least in this case, the bigger business companies tend to be New Zealand owned.

The strong New Zealand dollar has also been affecting sales and the industry has even asked growers to voluntarily reduce the amount of wine being produced. Paul Munro of Deloitte said the industry's reliance on export sales highlights "the importance of New Zealand wine maintaining its premium branding on the world stage".

It's predicted the 2011 grape harvest could exceed 300,000 tonnes. Get the calculator out. That equates to about 216 million bottles of wine.

At least we make damn good wine.

User comments
Unfortunately, for smaller vineyards, the oversupply of grapes only seems to have affected them. A report from Deloitte on the wine industry says wineries making less than $1 million annually have been losing an average of 32 percent of their revenue — about fives bottles of wine per cas

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