World wine production has returned to an average level in 2014
Global wine production, excluding juice and musts, is likely to reach 271 million hectolitres, a decrease of 6% compared with 2013. France has once again become the biggest producer in the world, ahead of Italy, which saw a poor harvest
France has once again become the biggest producer in the world (46.2 mhl, +10% compared with 2013), Italy has recorded a low production (44.4 mhl, -15% compared with 2013) and Spain has returned to an average level of production (37 mhl) following a record year (over 45 mhl in 2013). We should also mention the high growth in German production (9.7 mhl, +16%).
This reduction in production has been amplified in Eastern European countries: Bulgaria, Romania and Slovakia have recorded significant declines in their vinified production in relation to 2013 (-30, -20 and -16% respectively), linked to particularly adverse climate conditions. Only Hungary has maintained its 2013 level of production in 2014 at 2.7 mhl.
Elsewhere in the EU, there has been a general downward trend, as seen in Croatia (-30%/2013) with a production of slightly less than 1 mhl, or to a lesser extent in Portugal and Greece with 5.9 mhl (-6%/2013) and 2.9 mhl (-13%/2013) respectively.
For the third consecutive year, the United States has recorded a high level of production, despite the negative effects of the August earthquake and the not very favourable climate conditions in September in California. 2014 production is likely to be around 22.5 mhl.
In the southern hemisphere, contrasting developments have been observed: Chile, after two record years in 2012 and 2013, has seen a decline in its sizeable production: -2.8 mhl (-22%/2013) but likely to remain stable at 10 mhl, while in Argentina vinified production should grow slightly to 15.2 mhl (+1%/2013). As for South Africa, vinified production is likely to reach 11.4 mhl (+4% compared with 2013).
In Oceania, New Zealand's 2014 production is likely to set a new record of nearly 3.2 mhl (+29% compared with the previous 2013 record of 2.5 mhl), while in Australia the 2014 production should see slight growth compared with that of 2013 (from 12.3 mhl to 12.6 mhl).
At this time in the year, there is not yet comprehensive information on the level of consumption of different markets, yet the data available points to a consolidation of global consumption, at around 243 mhl.
Under these circumstances, 2014 production should guarantee that consumption and the demand for wines for industrial uses (brandy, vinegar and vermouth) are covered.