Grape leader Jeff Bitter says the California wine industry overall is purring like a well-tuned engine, yet beware of continued bumps in the road from foreign competition, alternative beverages, and rising input costs.
Bitter, vice-president of the Allied Grape Growers (AGG), spoke during the group's 63rd annual meetings held in Fresno and Santa Rosa, Calif. in mid July, attended by about 450 grower members.
Among the good news Bitter shared, “There’s more California wine consumed than ever before in the U.S.”
Wine tanks are full which means a good supply on hand tied to record wine grape production over the last two seasons (four-million-tons-plus each).
Could this year’s production meet or surpass the same mark?
“The answer is debatable,” Bitter said. “I’ve heard estimates from 3.7 million tons to 4.3 million tons for this year’s crop. We’ll see how it comes out.”
Enjoy these photos from the AGG meetings.Start slideshow