Wine Shortage Looms

Wednesday, 30 October, 2013
A Morgan Stanley Research report released Monday holds bad news for wine lovers: a global shortage is around the corner.
Last year, global supply of wine just barely exceeded demand.

After factoring in demand for non-wine uses such as making vermouth, there was a shortfall of some 300 million cases -- the largest shortfall in nearly 50 years.

“Data suggests there may be insufficient supply to meet demand in coming years, as current vintages are released,” the report said.

Poor weather led to a particularly weak harvest in 2012 -- after several modest harvests in a row -- but the International Organization for Vine and Wine sees good news in a stronger 2013 harvest.

The organization called the 2013 harvest "relatively high" -- a seven-year high, in fact -- but a single hefty harvest may not be enough to change the trend.

Wine consumption has been on the rise since the late 1990s, with the U.S. alone consuming 12 percent of the global supply. China has doubled its consumption twice in the last five years. The U.S. and China are expected to consume more than 400 million cases each by 2016.

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