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Optimism with regard to the 2015 vintage in Germany


During the last couple of days, most of Germany's wine-growing areas started their major grape harvest for the wine production of such grape varieties as Müller-Thurgau, Sauvignon Blanc, or the white Pinot varieties.

According to Deutsches Weininstitut (DWI - German Wine Institute), most winemakers are very content concerning the development of maturity, aroma characteristics and healthiness of the grapes picked so far. They are now hoping for a good late summer season, since harvesting of the late-ripening Riesling grapes will only commence by the end of September in wine-growing areas such as those along the Moselle and the Middle Rhine as well as in the Rheingau region.

Most of the grapevines did very well in the heat and drought of this summer because they are rooted up to 10 or more meters deep in the ground. Consequently, they have access to water reserves that many other plants cannot reach.

However, owing to the scarcity of water, the overall average size of the berries is smaller this year. As a result, the total quantity of this year's harvest is likely to fall a bit short of the ten-year average for all of Germany, which amounts to 9.1 million hectoliters of must. In the similarly hot and dry year 2003, yields were 10% below average. Last year, an average yield of 9.2 million hectoliters was achieved.