Wine Grape Harvest Suffered In 2011

NAPA (AP) — The late freezes and untimely rain impacted California’s wine grape harvest just as vintners had predicted: The 2011 harvest was down 7 percent to 3.3 million tons.

The preliminary harvest report was released Friday by the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

It showed that reduced supply meant increased prices.

Napa County recorded the highest prices for grapes with an average $3,400 per ton — up 5 percent from the previous year. Grapes from Sonoma and Marin counties netted an average $2,081 a ton — up 3 percent.

Factoring in all wine grape-growing regions, the average price for red wine grapes went up 12 percent to $702 a ton. For white, it went up 8 percent to $541.

When table grapes are included, the overall tonnage of the California fruit was still down 3 percent.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press)

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