Nov. 5 (UPI) — Wine production worldwide is expected to fall to historic lows after severe weather conditions impacted multiple winemaking areas in Europe, according to an intergovernmental viticulture organization.
The International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV) says it its forecast that harsh weather conditions in fertile areas in Italy, Spain and France have led to “extremely low” production volumes for the industry.
Compacting the problem, it says, is that demand for wine is almost back to normal levels that were disrupted by COVID-19.
“This would be the third consecutive year [when] the global production level is below average,” OIV said in a statement Thursday.
“Italy, Spain and France … lost about 22 [hectoliters] with respect to 2020 due late spring frost and overall unfavorable climatic conditions.”
The organization said 2021 estimates are between 247 and 253 hectoliters — which is 7% lower than its 20-year average.
France, Italy and Spain account for about 45% of global wine production and almost 80% of production in the European Union, OIV said.
“The impact of this downfall for the global wine sector is yet to be evaluated given the current context where the COVID-19 pandemic is still generating a relatively high degree of volatility and uncertainty,” the organization added.
By contrast, the OIV forecast said that Germany, Portugal, Romania, Hungary and the United States have seen a slight increase in production.