Global wine exports are continuing along a general growth
trend with the exception of South Africa and Australia, as
the strength of their domestic currencies dampens demand in
Australian wine export volumes fell 11.8% to about 392
million litres in the calendar year to date, while the value
of exports fell 10% to $A1.06 billion ($NZ1.35 billion)
compared to the same period last year, Rabobank's wine
Lower available supplies and the price increases implemented
to combat margin pressure from the high Australian dollar
were mostly to blame for the volume declines.
South African total export volumes declined 12% for the six
months ending August.
Increases in bulk wine exports (up 7.2%) had not been able to
compensate for declines in bottled wines (down 24.4%).
Exports to the UK, South Africa's largest wine trade partner,
were down 26% for the 12 months to August, but the impact of
that decline had been offset to some degree by increases in
sales to smaller markets.
Demark and Canada both grew by 9% and other markets had shown
strong growth rates, including Nigeria (up 22%), Thailand (up
25%), Angola (up 32%) and Tanzania (up 29%).
New Zealand exports posted modest gains to reach 84.9 million
litres and $NZ577 million in the first seven months of the
The annual average unit value declined to $NZ6.97 per litre
in July, in response to a higher proportion of bulk wine in
the export mix.
Average bottled wine prices have lifted marginally as
producers look to contend with the high New Zealand dollar in
key foreign markets.
With the grape harvest under way throughout much of the
northern hemisphere, the global wine sector could soon expect
to attain greater clarity on the ongoing shift in the
supply-demand balance, the report said.
Production increases in the southern hemisphere were now
starting to generate moderate pricing declines in some
markets but the overall supply-demand balance would depend to
a large degree on what happened in the northern hemisphere.
Early indications of higher production in France and Germany
could easily be outweighed by declines across Italy, Spain
and the US.