Prosecco DOC Forecasts an Exceptional Harvest for 2018

15th October 2018

prosecco harvest 2018

The 2018 harvest seems to have made everyone forget about the difficult 2017 vintage. Today, at its final stages, this year’s harvest has been reported to be generous in terms of both quantity and quality as opposed to the poor yields of 2017. The Prosecco DOC Consortium is now ready to evaluate the situation.

“The more-than-ever favourable climate has allowed an exceptional harvest for everyone”, stated Stefano Zanette, President of Prosecco DOC Consortium. “It is crucial to emphasize how our appellation follows precise disciplinary rules, which set the maximum yield for each vineyard as well as the grapes’ organoleptic characteristics. According to the initial data we received, the yield met our expectations. During exceptional harvests like this one, the disciplinary rules also allow producers to access a reserve harvest, which will provide an additional supply to satisfy market demand during difficult vintages with low yields, like 2017.”

As for the Consortium’s outlook, Zanette comments, “the Consortium is certainly able to fulfil one of its main responsibilities, which is reassuring markets by guaranteeing the balance between demand and supply. Thanks to the planning model the Consortium has implemented since 2011, we will keep a positive trend without price tension.”

International Outlook

Markets seem to be perfectly aligned with the Consortium’s production planning: during the first 9 months of this year, worldwide sales of Prosecco DOC have grown by 5%. Carefully reading these numbers, they reveal interesting trends that further reward the Consortium’s dedication.

In addition to reaching balance between demand and supply, – not an easy goal in such a dynamic and fast-moving sector – Prosecco DOC has also seen an increase in value and the beginning of international market diversification.

What does this mean? “It is very simple,” comments Zanette, “75% of the total production was exported to a few key markets. The UK, USA, and Germany alone used to buy two thirds of all available Prosecco. A high-risk circumstance, if we consider situations like Brexit and the dread of trade war with the US, which led us to extend our efforts to target other key markets. This year, we have already seen the first results of this strategy.

“For instance, in the UK, while exported volume slightly declined by 2.3%, we increased sales value by 4.9%, hitting one of the Consortium’s targets.  This is evidence of a successful strategy,” adds Zanette, “enabling the development of markets considered as ‘emergent’, which help us spread the share of exports around the world, lowering the risks of an excessive concentration. We can cite Russia, where, after declining for a few years, orders increased by 28%. Taiwan recorded a growth of 115%, Poland by 84.1%, and Belgium by 63.9%.

“An interesting trend has been reported from France, a country in which, as a sign of respect of their sparkling wine production tradition, we hadn’t initiated promotional campaigns. Yet, our transalpine cousins increased orders by 26%, becoming our 4th biggest market.

“Finally, Australia (+38.5%) and Sweden (+ 40.4%) close a list of relatively new and interestingly performing markets.

“Among the historical markets, we ought to draw attention to the US, our 2nd market, with a 3.8% increase, and Germany, which in growing by 12.5%, confirms its 3rd place on our international podium.”

The Consortium, for its part, is doing everything necessary to reassure markets and keep a constant growth in value of Prosecco, which is recognised as indisputably representing the excellence of North-eastern Italy and as a “Made in Italy” icon worldwide.

If we want to close this harvest with some forecasts”, concludes Zanette, “we only have to hope it keeps going like this!”

Glass of Bubbly

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