California Central Valley Grapes Spur Increased Demand
on 23/11/10 at 10:13 amIndustry, Wine
Steady growth in sales of value-priced wines are a positive sign for Central Valley winegrape growers, who were encouraged last week to increase planted acreage with key grape varieties to meet projected demand for the next 20 years. lndustry experts brought the welcome message to the San Joaquin Valley Wine & Grape Industry Forum held Nov. 19 in Fresno, presented by the San Joaquin Valley Winegrowers Association (SJVWA).
David Kent, CEO for The Wine Group (TWG) headquartered in San Francisco, which purchases 25% of the grape production from the Southern San Joaquin Valley, discussed wine market and varietal trends for consumer age groups by generation. In 2006, TWG started its Underdog Wine Merchants business unit to produce and market a portfolio of wines for post-Baby Boom-generation consumers. Underdog includes Fish Eye and Cupcake, which Kent called “one of the hottest brands in the country today.” TWG is the second largest wine producer in the U.S., and the world’s third largest producer by volume, with annual sales of nearly 60 million cases, and expected 2010 export sales of 10 million cases.