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Severe Weather, Crop Losses Blamed For Coming Spike In Wine Prices

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(credit: ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)

(credit: ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)

(CBS) Ron Kilgore
Ron Kilgore is a 36-year broadcast veteran in radio and televi...
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SANTA BARBARA (CBS) — Be sure to enjoy your next glass, wine aficionados: prices for your favorite vino are expected to jump in coming months.

Wineries in Santa Barbara and along the Pacific coast are likely to begin raising prices amid a decline in the supply of grapes, according to a new industry forecast.

The annual State of the Wine Industry Report (PDF) predicts that prices for California wines will be first to rise, followed by wine from Oregon and Washington State.

Jim Fiolek, Executive Director of the Santa Barbara County Vintners’ Association, told KNX 1070’s Ron Kilgore the spike in pricing is the result of extreme weather conditions.

“We’ve had a couple years in a row where, in our particular area, we had a frost where some vineyards lost as much as 30 percent,” said Fiolek. “That takes a big chunk out of inventory.”

Fiolek stressed that while not every winery may be affected, he expects “a majority of them” to revisit how they price their product.

The report forecasts that overall prices may inch higher from anywhere between 7 percent to 11 percent from where they are today.

75 percent of wineries in Santa Barbara produce less than 5,000 cases of wine annually, with nearly half of those yielding 2,000 cases or less, according to Fiolek, which could increase prices from $2 to $3 per bottle for wines priced $20 and up.

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