In a vintage defined by the COVID-19 pandemic, wildfires preceding harvest, and naturally lower yields, Oregon grape production and crush declined substantially in 2020.
With lower fruit set leading to lower yields and September wildfire smoke impacting harvest decisions, yield per harvested acre decreased by 24% and harvested acreage declined by 6.4% resulting in a 29% reduction in grape production—more than 30,000 tons less than in 2019.
The estimated value of wine grape production decreased 34% or by nearly $80 million to about $158 million.
Total planted acreage increased by more than 2,100 acres from 37,399 to 39,531, an increase of 5.7%. Increases were seen throughout the state in both the number of vineyards and total acres planted to grapevines.
The leading variety in planted acreage and production remains Pinot Noir, accounting for 59% of all planted acreage and 49% of wine grape production.
Total tons crushed statewide decreased by 23.1% from 84,590 tons to 65,009 tons, with modest increases seen in the Rogue Valley and Columbia River regions.
Case sales were roughly flat, growing 0.7% across all channels. Sales through direct-to-consumer channels declined by 26.8% overall, with some tasting room losses offset by wine club and web/phone orders. Sales into distributed channels increased by 3.5% in Oregon and 9.1% in the rest of the U.S.
Export sales increased by 24.3%. The leading export market for Oregon wine continues to be Canada, which accounted for 46% of export sales. Notable growth was seen in all markets.
Smoke and COVID impacts Given the unprecedented nature of this vintage, respondents were asked about the impacts of wildfire smoke and the COVID-19 pandemic on their growing season, sales, harvest, and crush. The IPRE team has put together a document summarizing the effects of these forces of nature as described by growers and producers.