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Bob Larson Wine Grape Harvest Pt 2
by Bob Larson, click here for bio

Program: Fruit Grower Report
Date: March 12, 2018

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With today’s Fruit Grower Report, I’m Bob Larson. The Washington wine grape harvest for 2017 totaled 227-thousand tons, down 16 percent from the record year of 2016.

But, Washington State Wine’s Heather Bradshaw says the quality of the grapes was outstanding …

BRADSHAW … “2016 was just really exceptionally large harvest and so 2017 was just evening out a little bit and the fruit just looks fantastic in 2017.”

Bradshaw says you’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who isn’t raving about this harvest …

BRADSHAW … “We’re all very excited to try the 2017 harvest. We’ve heard from numerous growers and winemakers that this harvest is really something special. So, I think that these 2017 wines are going to be fantastic.”

She says it’s all good news for an expanding Washington wine community …

BRADSHAW … “And, I think it’s important to remember that Washington state, we’re still in a period of tremendous growth. The compound annual growth rate of all grapes grown and wine sold in the state shows steady growth at 5.4 percent over a 10-year period. So, we’re still growing when you look at the averages, we’re still growing pretty tremendously and we expect that to continue.”

I asked Bradshaw if that growth was in production or acreage …

BRADSHAW … “That included the production, the 5.4 percent, included grapes grown and wine sold, but wine grape acreage has grown 18 percent in 5-years and we also expect that to keep booming.”

Cabernet Sauvignon led the way at just over 62,000 tons, Chardonnay was second at over 39,000 tons, followed by Riesling 33,000 tons, Merlot 32,700 tons, and Syrah 20,800 tons.

Washington is second to California in the production of

premium wines, and has more than 940 wineries.

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