The 2021 grapes are of high quality, which will have a positive impact on the price of Georgian wine and, consequently, on the incomes of both growers and entrepreneurs
As of September 29, about 200,000 tons of grapes had been processed in Georgia’s wine region of Kakheti, with some 20,000 farmers receiving 220 million GEL by selling harvested grapes.
Based on the decision of the Government of Georgia, a subsidy program was implemented to support the 2021 vintage. As part of the program, the Georgian government allocated 14 million GEL in subsidies to assist in the harvesting of grapes damaged by heavy hail in the Georgian wine region of Kakheti on August 27 and September 2.
The government is also subsidizing the 2021 grape harvest to financially support farmers during the pandemic.
Within the framework of Harvest 2021, a subsidy was given to all companies that bought and processed at least 100 tons of Rkatsiteli or Kakhetian Green grapes grown in the Kakheti region, and paid the viticulturists at least 0.90 GEL per 1 kg of grapes.
In August, heavy hail and strong winds destroyed 4,600 ha of vineyards in about 30 villages in the municipalities of Kvareli, Telavi and Gurjaani. To save the remaining grapes, farmers decided to start the grape harvest in August, instead of in September.
The National Wine Agency reported that the 2021 vintage was characterized by high-quality grapes. The chairman of the National Wine Agency, Levan Mekhuzla, noted that during the current year’s harvest, it was revealed that the priority for the growers was the quality of the grapes and not the quantity.
“Since the beginning of the year, we have had active communication with farmers. At meetings in the villages, one of the important issues being discussed was to focus not on the quantity of the grape but on the quality. Our viticulturist farmers correctly understood and took into account the importance of this approach, and as a result, this year the grapes are of high quality, which, in the long run, has a positive impact on the price of Georgian wine and, consequently, on the incomes of both growers and entrepreneurs,” Mekhuzla stated, noting that improving the quality of Georgian wine is one of the main priorities of the National Wine Agency.
Georgia exported 65 million bottles of wine to 59 countries in January-August 2021, which is an increase of 19% compared to the same period of 2020.
The National Wine Agency says revenue from wine exported from Georgia in January-August of this year reached $145 million.
Export growth dynamics in strategic markets of Georgian wine are being maintained:
Poland – 29% increase (3,638,057 bottles)
China – 9% increase (3,373,517 bottles)
Latvia – 4% increase (1,119,219 bottles)
Lithuania – 56% increase (675,510 bottles)
The US – 26% increase (700,696 bottles
Germany – 23% increase (553,852 bottles)
UK – 73% increase (435,264 bottles).
This year, the growth of Georgian wine export is particularly significant in the following countries:
Canada – 132% increase (235,888 bottles)
Sweden – 65% increase (69,280 bottles)
Czech Republic – 646% increase (112,236 bottles)
France – 31% increase (50,416 bottles)
Kazakhstan – 37% increase (2, 552,200 bottles)
Israel – 52% increase (304,827 bottles)
Azerbaijan – 21% increase (158,411 bottles)
Turkey – 156% increase (77,226 bottles)
Ukraine – 16% increase (7,366,327 bottles)
Russia – 17% increase (39,474,016 bottles)
Mongolia – 316% increase (306,690 bottles)
Belarus – 13% (2,062,327 bottles).
The top five Georgian wine exporting countries are: Russia, Ukraine, Poland, China and Kazakhstan.
At the same time, the country exported 22 million bottles of Georgian brandy (+21%) and 570,000 bottles of chacha (+115%) abroad in the first eight months of 2021.
In total, Georgia has sold alcoholic beverages worth $234 million in the reporting period, including wine, brandy, chacha and more.
Moreover, active work is underway to further popularize Georgian wine in international markets.
As such, in September, a Georgian Wine Presentation was organized by the National Wine Agency and marketing company Marq Energie Consulting in the United States, a contractor of the National Wine Agency.
Georgian Ambassador to the United States, Davit Bakradze, attended the presentation.
Georgian wines which are already sold on the US market, and about 60 samples that are not yet known to American consumers, were presented at the event.
Georgian wine tastings were also held in San Francisco on October 6 and in New York on October 18, organized by Marq Energie Consulting.
The United States is a strategic market for Georgian wine, where the National Wine Agency, in cooperation with the private wine industry, is pursuing a consistent marketing strategy. As a result, Georgian wine exports to the US market are growing steadily. In January-August of this year, 700 thousand bottles of wine were exported, an increase of 26% compared to the same period last year.
In September, Georgian wine tasting was also held in Poznan, Poland, with the support of the National Wine Agency and publishing house “Vinisfera.”
“Poznan, where the presentation of Georgian wine was held for a second time, is one of the largest cities in Poland in terms of wine consumption, with outstanding restaurants, wine bars, educational and tourist centers,” the National Wine Agency noted. “Consequently, the tasting held in Poznan is important to increase the awareness of Georgian wine in the strategic market of Poland. The tasting was attended by restaurateurs, sommeliers, and representatives of the Poznan Wine Club, hotel chains, travel agencies, wine trade, and media. In Poznan, those wines were presented which, with the support of the National Wine Agency, are now gaining a foothold on the Polish market. Poland is one of the top five exporters of Georgian wine and is one of the strategic markets. In the first eight months of this year, exports amounted to 3.7 million bottles. The increase, compared to the same period last year, is up 30%.”