Sheri Hebbeln
November 30, 2013 | Sheri Hebbeln

US Wine Supplies High

Wine lovers can rejoice upon hearing that California achieved another large, high-quality grape harvest in 2013. Throughout the growing regions in the state, vintners reported significant crops, according to International Wine and Spirit Research. 

Growers experienced nearly perfect conditions with healthy winter rains, a warm, dry spring, few heat spikes during the summer and low wind. Although not all regions experienced the same crop size, the total tonnage is expected to be approximately 4 million tons for the second year in a row.

But as we all know, high quantity can't make up for low quality. Thankfully, the 2013 vintage is supposed to produce high-quality wine across nearly every type of grape. While many in the industry are still speculating what the results from the 2013 harvest will be, it may be time for wineries to assess their wine inventory software.

New opportunities to sell wine online

The ideal weather during the growing season may lead to a prime vintage year with more, better

 quality wine. In fact, the California harvest may reassure people who 

feared increasing demand in China was leading to a global wine shortage, CNBC stated. With two subsequent years of high-yield crops, most California wineries are at an advantage: Wine production rose 20 percent in the past year.

U.S. wine revenues have increased faster than volume, which means consumers are buying more expensive bottles. The reign of "Two-Buck Chuck" may be coming to an end - the $15 to $20 range has experienced a great deal of growth in the past year, the article said.

Americans aren't the only buyers winemakers are trying to reach. They're attempting to increase international sales as well as domestic. Twenty percent of wine bottles produced in California are sold internationally, primarily in Canada and European countries. However, China is becoming a more significant wine market. International market growth may create new opportunities for vintners to raise their online wine sales. 

Even though wineries may be able to increase sales internationally, there's no guarantee foreign demand will be the key to success. Selling in other countries poses marketing challenges and vintners need to keep an eye on the rising popularity of craft beers. In the past, beer lost market share to wine, but craft brew demand is also growing. Wineries need to have well-structured, target wine marketing campaigns. With the large harvest and the expected high-quality 2013 vintage, it may be a good time for winemakers to assess their needs for the near future so they can successfully manage inventory and boost online sales. 



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