Small harvest for South Africa in 2018

The 2018 wine harvest in South Africa is expected to be the smallest in more than a decade after drought and lower plantings hit yields, said industry body, South African Wine Industry Information (Sawis).

According to VinPro, another industry body, the 2018 crop could be the smallest since 2005, with a predicted 1,157,631 tonnes compared to the 1,434,328 tonnes picked in 2017.

Western Cape province was declared a disaster area in May due to a severe drought that has dried up reservoirs and led to water restrictions for residents and industry.

White and black frost damage in the Breedekloof, Robertson and Worcester regions could also hurt the 2018 harvest. Paul Makube Senior, agricultural economist for FNB Business, estimated that harvests would be 10,000 to 15,000 tonnes lower in those areas.

The harvest will take place during February and March 2018.

South Africa’s wine industry exports 440 million litres of wine and is the world’s seventh-biggest wine producer.