Port yields reduced by decree, down 20%
The Port trade’s Inter-Professional Council has restricted Port production for the second year running to dramatically reduce stocks, according to a report in Drinks Business this week. Yields for this year’s harvest will limit total Port production to 671,000 hectolitres, which is nearly 20% below estimated Port sales of 825,000hl for 2012. This follows severe port restrictions in 2011. The measures have been designed to end an oversupply in the Douro and by January 2013 Port stocks will be at their lowest levels since the 1990s.
According to Paul Symington, joint managing director of Symington Family Estates, higher quality vineyards will have less of a yield reduction than the standard quality vineyards.
Port sales worldwide are currently 3.7% up to the end of May 2012 and Port exports to the UK are up 21% (due partly to the phasing of shipments). Port shippers have also recently been attempting to develop sales in Asia.