Australian grape crop increases but exports remain stifled
Australia’s 2021/22 table grape production is estimated to increase by 5% to 210,000 tons, according to USDA data. Despite vine plantings now coming into fruition, production has remained relatively flat since 2019/20. Reduced labour availability due to the COVID-19 pandemic has not only impacted production but also reduced the volume of export-quality table grapes and subsequently increased the supply of table grapes on the domestic market. The shortage of shipping container availability and higher transportation costs (also largely attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic) contributed to lowering exports in 2020/21 to 120,500 tons, and are also expected to limit exports in 2021/22 to 130,000 tons). These levels are both significantly lower than the record export year in 2019/20, when volumes reached 152,500 tons.