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CIATTI Global Wine & Grape Brokers logo




1101 Fifth Ave #170
San Rafael
CA, 94901
United States
(415) 458-5160
Lora Parnell


Ciatti's roots in the California Wine industry span over a half a century. In 2006 Joe Ciatti retired. A new ownership group carries on with a blend of considerable experience and a fresh vision for the future. Ciatti is the largest and most comprehensive bulk wine, juice and grape brokerage in the world.

With 8 offices world wide, Ciatti serves our clients with the most up-to-date and accurate market information available. Please contact us with any questions. We are truly at your service.


Greg Livengood

President, Partner and Broker

Greg joined Ciatti in 1994 and became a partner in 1997. Greg has used his degree in International Relations to build Ciatti into the world recognized leader in the alcohol beverage business. Greg is currently the President and CEO of the company and drives the international group.

Steve Dorfman

Partner and Broker

Steve Dorfman joined Ciatti in 2007 after working with the Brown-Forman Corporation, Fetzer Vineyards, Sonoma-Cutrer Vineyards and Bolla Wine brands for 24 years. His primary responsibilities are wine and grape sales within California, and the supply demands of markets throughout Europe, South Africa and Australia.

John Ciatti

Partner and Broker

John Ciatti started with the company in 1982 and became a partner in 1986. John has always maintained a strong presence in all areas of the Domestic US Ciatti business. He specializes in spot and contract bulk wine and grape sales from all regions of California.

John also works very closely with the fruit and grape juice concentrate division, looking to develop specialty products for the food and juice industry. John values the insight and knowledge that brokering affords and thrives on using that information to create sales at all levels of our industry.

John White

Partner and Broker

Ciatti has a long history of seeking to provide clients with a well rounded team of brokers whose experience in the industry cover the breadth of the business. John joined the company in 2003 after working as a Winemaker for several of California's major producers for 20 years. John's emphasis is maintaining relationships with California wineries ranging from the largest to the smallest. John has focused on all aspects of growth within the business, from long-term custom crush contracts to spot bulk wine and grape sales. His speciatly is the sourcing and selling of premium varietal lots from the coastal and interior regions of California.

Chris Welch

Partner and Broker

Chris Welch joined Ciatti in 1994, and began brokering bulk wine and grapes in 2003 and became a partner in company in 2007. The premium and super premium segment of the California wine industry are the breeding grounds of innovation and where Chris truly excels. His consistent approach helps small and medium size wineries and negotiants achieve the innovation and growth they seek. Chris also works very closely with the Oregon Wine Industry.

Glenn Proctor

Partner and Broker

Glenn Proctor joined Ciatti in 2003 and became a partner in 2007. Glenn advises wineries on supply positioning and works closely with growers and wineries in marketing their grapes and wine. He specializes in spot and contract bulk wine and grapes sales from all regions of California. He has over 23 years of experience in wine supply strategy, wine-grape quality improvement, brand strategy, and business development. Glenn was previously the Vice President of Winegrowing for Diageo Chateau and Estate Wines, and before that was a Director at Benziger/Glen Ellen Winery during its rapid growth in the early 1990's.
Johnny Leonardo


Johnny Leonardo joined Ciatti in 2004 as a broker and knows that surviving in a dynamic wine industry requires one to be a Jack-of-all-Trades. He has experience in all aspects of winery and vineyard operation, from the field to the street. Johnny has developed and managed vineyards, and worked in wine sales and marketing.

Andy Bivona


Andy joined Ciatti as a broker in 1996. His areas of expertise and responsibility include grape and fruit concentrates, beverage and industrial alcohol, fruit alcohol and brandy, and food specialty products. Andy's knowledge of these products has allowed him to branch out and work throughout various parts of the world including Mexico, South America and Europe. Andy remains a wealth of knowledge and offers a creative approach to all endeavors.

Todd Azevedo


Todd Azevedo joined Ciatti in 2004 after completing his Agricultural Finance degree from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. Although Todd brokers wine, grapes, and wine products throughout the state of California, Todd's focus is on the California Central Coast.

Cindy Hansen

Finance Manager

Joined Ciatti in 1984.

Lora Parnell

Sales Support Manager

Joined Ciatti in 2000.

Jed Lucey

Customer Account Representative - North America

Joined Ciatti in 2003.

Mark Ishimaru

Customer Account Representative - North America

Joined Ciatti in 2011.


Molly Richardson

Customer Account Representation - Grower Accounts

Joined Ciatti in 2016



Alette Roberts

Administrative/Accounting Assistant

Joined Ciatti in 2000.
Michael Fung

Customer Account Representative - Sample Room

Joined Ciatti in 2013.




Ciatti is committed to providing you with all your wine and drink making needs. Whether you are after 5 gallon pails or bulk tanker quantities, we can help find the right product for your needs.

The following are products we source from around the world:

Bulk Wine

The Ciatti Advantage

Ciatti specializes in brokering bulk wines, and uses this expertise and knowledge to be the world's largest wine brokerage company.

We use our local and global knowledge and extensive network to bring growers, suppliers and end-users together.With eight offices located around the world representing all major wine growing countries, we can offer global supply solutions to an extremely diverse international client base.

We have built strong relationships with all of the world's major wine companies. We are recognized internationally for reliable information and extensive bulk wine inventories, in both volume and quality.

Our goal is to provide the best information, experience, inventory and service in the global bulk wine market. As we are a pure brokerage company, we take no position on the wine so you will be guaranteed the best unbiased opinion on quality, price and demand.

The Purchase Process

Ciatti recommends that customers take advantage of the wine sample system to assist in finding the perfect wine. No matter what volume of wine you are looking for we can assist in finding the perfect match for your requirements. We work with all valued customers to develop required wine specification details, which can later be used to form part of the purchase terms. The wine brokers operate within individual markets, but their global knowledge they can help source wine styles and prices from our global inventory. Once we are aware of your wine style requirements we will organize samples for style approval.

Ciatti negotiates both spot market and long term bulk wine contracts. We are responsible for matching the needs of the buyer with the available supply options from a diverse range of producers. This enables buyers to diversify their supply risk.

Evaluation Services

Ciatti provides an independent wine evaluation and appraisal service to the wine industry. This includes feedback to suppliers and producers on the quality, marketability and current demand in the marketplace of their wines.

The tasting panel consists of wine professionals associated in various roles in the wine industry (Winemaking, Sales and Marketing) who are able to give opinions on quality and current demand for the wines both domestically and internationally.

Wines are tasted and analyzed so we can provide detailed tasting notes, as well as a guide to demand and price range for the current market conditions. If needed, our staff can answer questions or provide further information before the tasting occurs. Once completed Ciatti is happy to discuss the outcome with the supplier or producer.


Ciatti can help source or sell grapes prior to and during vintage time. All of our brokers have extensive knowledge and relationships in the domestic markets, and they utilize this information to find the perfect buyer or seller for your requirements. Grapes can be sourced from any growing region, which ensures the perfect parcel can be found for any situation.

The brokers can assist with and facilitate:

·Vineyard Inspections

·On-site grape tastings

·Selecting harvest options

·Defining grape or wine parameters before picking (Baume/ Brix levels, grape specifications)

·Organizing third parties (Transport, winery space and storage)

Please don't hesitate to contact your local office to discuss any of your grape needs.

Grape Juice Concentrate

Standard White Grape Juice Concentrate

Sourced from California, Argentina, Australia, Chile, Italy, Spain and South Africa, we can fill your standard white grape juice concentrate requirements. Whether you're looking for crude, standard, organic, extra light or Kosher certified we have you covered.

Red 2000, 1600, 1000, 700, 600, 400 Grape Juice Concentrate

Sourced from California, Chile, Australia, Italy and Spain, Ciatti can source red juice concentrates of every colour intensity for your needs. These products are also available in crude, standard, organic and kosher.

Varietal Grape Juice Concentrate

Available Varietals include:

  • Chardonnay
  • French Colombard
  • Chenin Blanc
  • J. Riesling
  • Gew 1/4 rztraminer
  • Muscat
  • Syrah
  • Cabernet Sauvignon
  • Merlot
  • Barbera
  • Malvasia
  • Grenache
  • Sauvignon Blanc
  • Viognier
  • Pinot Grigio
  • Vino Blanc
  • Alicante
  • White Zinfandel
  • Zinfandel
  • Cabernet Franc
  • Petite Syrah
  • Burgundy Symphony














Specialty Grape Juice Concentrates

Available specifically in the US, we can source Mega Natural (R) 8000 colours in red, purple and cherry. We can also assist in Grape Juice Concentrate 8000 in red and purple.

Also available Grape seed extracts, hi proof grape spirits, brandy, (aged and unaged), grape oils and flour and pomegranate essence and arils.

Fruit Juice Concentrates

Specialty fruit Juice Concentrates are available in the US, and include:

  • Peach
  • pear
  • apple
  • raspberry
  • blueberry
  • strawberry
  • blackberry
  • cherry
  • cranberry
  • marionberry
  • mixed berries
  • currant

Super fruits available include:

  • pomegranate
  • goji
  • acai
  • mangosteen
  • starfruit
  • kiwi
  • elderberry
  • acerola
  • prickly pear cactus

Tropical fruits available include:

  • pineapple
  • mango
  • passion fruit











For any queries in the US, please contact our concentrate specialist broker Greg MaGill. If you have any global concentrate or juice enquiry, please contact your closest Ciatti Office.

North Coast: Feb 2012 Ciatti Grape Report
North Coast: Feb 2012 Ciatti Grape Report
John White shares observations about the preliminary California Grape Crush Report specific to the North Coast.
Central Coast: Feb 2012 Ciatti Grape Report
Central Coast: Feb 2012 Ciatti Grape Report
Glenn Proctor shares observations about the preliminary California Grape Crush Report specific to the Central Coast.
Central Valley: Feb 2012 California Grape Report
Central Valley: Feb 2012 California Grape Report
John Ciatti shares observations about the preliminary California Grape Crush Report specific to the Central Valley.

News Archive

Global Market Report May 2017
12 May, 2017

A Europe-wide frost episode towards the end of April touched most if not all growing regions of France and some northern growing areas of Spain and Italy. Read this month’s Ciatti report to find out how the downward revisions in Europe’s expected 2017 harvest volumes – combined with short 2017 harvests in Argentina and Chile – is impacting the global bulk market.  READ FULL REPORT HERE

Global Market Report April 2017
12 April, 2017

The focus of this month’s report is activity at ProWein 2017, a show which, like its previous installments, was vast and busier than ever before. Each with two halls of the massive Messe Düsseldorf, Italy (1,600 exhibitors), France (1,500) and home country Germany (1,000) dominated, with 600 Spanish and 400 Portuguese exhibitors in an Iberian hall and 120 Argentine, 120 Australian and New Zealand, 100 US and 100 Chilean exhibitors packed into the bustling International Hall. Overall there were 6,500 exhibitors (the most famous being singer-songwriter Sting, who popped in to promote his Tuscan winery) and a show record 58,500 visitors from 130 countries. 

There were a number of recurring themes that cropped up when talking to ProWein attendees. Firstly, the global wine market feels in balance. The OIV has a mid-range estimate of 2016 global... READ FULL REPORT

Global Market Report - March 2017
15 March, 2017

As the bulk wine world turns its attention to ProWein in Germany, this month’s Ciatti report assesses the market activity for Northern Hemisphere wines in the weeks leading up to the show, and provides an update  on how each Southern Hemisphere harvest is progressing. Mother Nature is proving a fickle mistress for two producer countries in particular. 

The Southern Hemisphere harvests are now fully underway and the picture is mixed: while Australia, New Zealand and South Africa are each currently on course for good-sized crops with quality looking excellent, Argentina and Chile have for a second-successive year been dogged by unfavourable growing conditions and their crop sizes have been downwardly revised. Meanwhile, the buying campaigns in California, France, Spain and Italy have been somewhat characterised by a slowness as buyers hold off on all but their immediate needs. READ FULL REPORT

Come see us at ProWein: we’ll be in Hall 9, on stand A1.

2016 California Winegrape Crush; Return to Normalcy
13 February, 2017

The Preliminary California Grape Crush Report released today shows 4,000,790 tons were crushed. The report reveals the overall crush was up 8% from the 2015 harvest, and the average winegrape price was up 14% to $789/ton. A more in depth look shows the standout varietals, such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Grigio, Petite Sirah, and Pinot Noir proved to be the large tonnage increases from the previous 2015 vintage. New plantings along the coast and the northern interior have produced the rebound yields.

The 2016 Cabernet Sauvignon gained a surprising 101,500 tons for a historic state total of 557,192. Virtually all California regions increased from 2015 to 2016. Lodi, Modesto, and Paso Robles areas experienced their biggest tonnage ever. We believe that the large increase is due to new plantings coming on line, as vine yields seemed average. Anticipate that the 2017 California Cabernet Sauvignon harvest could move quickly towards 600,000 tons. – Glenn Proctor

Chardonnay tonnage was up by 6% and back to 672,000 tons, a yield closer to a state average. This year’s harvest showed regional gains and losses almost opposite to what we had seen in the previous year’s light harvest. Large gains of 12 to 19% were noted in the premium Coastal regions of Sonoma, Napa, and Monterey where demand has been the highest. However yields in the Southern interior valleys from Fresno to Bakersfield were down by 3 to 7%. Pricing for Chardonnay was up as a state average by 10.8% reflecting a continued demand for California’s largest wine grape varietal. – John White

The 2016 California Pinot Grigio crop came in at 243,665 tons, up 58,467 tons or 31.6% from 2015. This was the result of new plantings of the last few years beginning to approach full production. Statewide average pricing was essentially flat at $595 per ton. The majority of the state’s Pinot Grigio plantings are in the Central Valley and are controlled by wineries with owned vineyards and/or long term contracts. With that, the opportunity for spot grape purchasing will remain limited in the near future. But there are currently bulk wine purchasing opportunities that didn’t exist after the 2015 harvest. With Pinot Grigio continuing to show strong demand, we see the market to continue to be essentially balanced. – Chris Welch

2015 Sauvignon Blanc Vintage witnessed a large influx of demand due to the lowest yields in the past five vintages. In 2015 California harvested 88,256 tons, 2016 we gained 19.5% up to 105,509 tons. Even with this increase in supply, demand made the 2016 Sauvignon Blanc crop feel small. – Todd Azevedo

As expected the 2016 Pinot Noir crop provided some relief coming in approximately 35% higher than the 2015 crop report. The Central Coast made the biggest rebound with approximately 58% increase and the North Coast increased approximately 32% from the previous vintage. $1,831/ton was the average

price for Pinot Noir in 2016. The highest price per ton comes from Sonoma County at $3,657. Even with the increased yields and high prices, demand remains at an all-time high. – Todd Azevedo

After two consecutive light harvests, total state production of Zinfandel was up 6.7% from 2015 to 414,559 tons. Almost all areas saw increases in tonnage, the largest being District 11 (Lodi) increasing 22.7% to a total of 146,397 tons. District 13 (Madera/Fresno) totaled 159,547 tons but was down (-3.8%) with most of the production destined for a struggling white zin market. On the North Coast District 3 (Sonoma) rose 13.5% while District 4 (Napa) was down (-11%). Despite the increase in production, tonnage levels were still far below that of 2012 and 2013 with relatively no newly planted acres. – Johnny Leonardo

State reported a decrease of 40,000 tons produced into grape juice concentrate for 2016 versus 2015. Only 393,000 tons or (9.4%) of this seasons harvest went to concentrate. Specifically, Rubired tonnage was down (11.4%) to 47,000 tons. Raisin and table grapes totaled 196,000 ton or an increase of 17%. We continue to see strong demand on Red juice concentrate, and weaker demand for white concentrate. – John Ciatti

Ciatti Craft Beverage is looking for used Oak Foeders
23 January, 2017

Ciatti Craft Beverage is looking for used Oak Foeders.

All formats and sizes considered.

If interested in selling, please email Rob Bolch at: rob@ciatti.comPh.(707)738-4866

13 January, 2017

As 2017 begins, the team at Ciatti wishes all of our clients, friends and business associates a very happy and prosperous year to come. We thank you for your continued support.  It being January, this month’s report reviews the old year on the bulk market and assesses what the new one may bring. The two talking points that are likely to reoccur throughout 2017 are: 1) will (what we believe to be) a pretty much balanced market slip into undersupply if harvests continue to come in average or below, and 2) how will political events affect exchange rates?  READ FULL REPORT

Global Market Update December 2016
15 December, 2016

The festive holiday season is upon us and business is being paused. The bulk wine markets in France and Spain are currently in a wait-and-see situation, with buyers unwilling to meet the offer prices and confident of price adjustments in the New Year. Transactions in Italy, the world’s biggest produce by volume in 2016, have been slower than expected, while international buyers are showing interest in South Africa but most are yet to take firm positions. These facts appear to somewhat contradict recent media reports of an ‘impending global supply shortage’ of bulk wine. Ciatti believes such claims are overstated, and that the market is pretty well in balance. READ FULL REPORT  

15 November, 2016

We would like to thank Robert Selby our London based author for his insights, development and writing of this report.  Robert worked at Informa as Deputy Editor on its titles Eurofood and World Drinks Report (2008-10), then as Beverages Editor (covering soft drinks, beer, wine and spirits) on its agribusiness journal Foodnews (2010-11). He completed a PhD in English Literature at the University of London in 2015, and has since worked as a freelance writer. 

The World Bulk Wine Exhibition in Amsterdam on 21st and 22nd November should mark when the buying and selling activity for the recent Northern Hemisphere harvest gets fully underway. Although harvest sizes in Western Europe were disappointing overall, some exciting buying opportunities have arisen, while California can boast... READ FULL REPORT

14 October, 2016

Harvests in Europe are concluding and the trend is for volumes level with, or down by varying degrees on, 2015. The main ‘winner’ could be Italy, which enjoyed slightly better growing conditions than France or Spain. Overall, it does not feel like there is a surfeit of wine anywhere in the world right now.

Italy’s 2016 harvest, at approximately 46-47 million hectolitres, will be the world’s largest. Meanwhile, the harvest in France’s powerhouse Languedoc region could be... READ FULL REPORT HERE


Ciatti Craft Beverage is looking for 80-120 used white wine barrels
07 October, 2016

Ciatti Craft Beverage a division of the Ciatti Company is looking for 80-120 used white wine barrels. 

Specifically, we are looking for barrels that fit the following criteria;

  • Used oak barrels –  59 gal size
  • Prior wine type: Sauvignon Blanc and/or other white varietals in them (non Chardonnay please)
  • Recently emptied
  • Price:  Subject to Age & Condition

 If interested in selling, please email Rob Bolch at: rob@ciatti.comPh.(707)738-4866

The Ciatti Company is looking for 80-120 used white wine barrels
30 September, 2016

The Ciatti Company is looking for 80-120 used white wine barrels. 

Specifically, we are looking for barrels that fit the following criteria;

  • Used oak barrels –  59 gal size
  • Prior wine type: Sauvignon Blanc and/or other white varietals in them (non Chardonnay please)
  • Recently emptied
  • Price:  Subject to Age & Condition

 If interested in selling, please email Rob Bolch at: rob@ciatti.comPh.(707)738-4866

14 September, 2016

July and early August have brought heat to the Northern Hemisphere. California’s Central Valley experienced some consecutive days of temperatures at 100ËF+ in early August; in France’s Provence and Languedoc regions, water reserves are low; in Italy, mildew and juice levels are a concern. Overall, however, temperatures have not been abnormal and notable problems with ripening have not been reported in any country.

The growing seasons in France, Spain and Italy are two weeks behind schedule; Italy’s lateness is causing stress for Prosecco buyers in particular. As you will read, Prosecco is one of the imported sparkling wines enjoying a “sensational growth uptrend” in the US consumer market and supply of 2015 Prosecco is almost gone. The 2016 Prosecco can’t come soon enough. Buyers cannot, however, count on lower prices when the 2016 vintage does come online: supply increases are tracking, not exceeding, the demand increase. READ FULL REPORT HERE

Ciatti Company seeking white wine barrels (varietals other than Chardonnay preferred)
25 August, 2016

The Ciatti Company is looking for 80-120 used white wine barrels. 

Specifically, we are looking for barrels that fit the following criteria;

  • Used oak barrels –  59 gal size
  • Prior wine type: Sauvignon Blanc and/or other white varietals in them (non Chardonnay please)
  • Recently emptied
  • Price:  Subject to Age & Condition

 If interested in selling, please email Rob Bolch at: rob@ciatti.comPh.(707)738-4866

15 August, 2016

July and early August have brought heat to the Northern Hemisphere. California’s Central Valley experienced some consecutive days of temperatures at 100ËF+ in early August; in France’s Provence and Languedoc regions, water reserves are low; in Italy, mildew and juice levels are a concern. Overall, however, temperatures have not been abnormal and notable problems with ripening have not been reported in any country.


The growing seasons in France, Spain and Italy are two weeks behind schedule; Italy’s lateness is causing stress for Prosecco buyers in particular. As you will read, Prosecco is... READ FULL REPORT HERE.

13 July, 2016

July 2016 is an exciting month for the Ciatti Global Market Update.  

With July's Global Market Update we are launching a new and improved, fresh and modern format.  Inside we hope you will find articles that feature topics and information that are timely and relevant to your business.  Please give it a close read as it is chock full of information!
We would like to thank Robert Selby our London based author for his insights, development and writing of this report.  Robert worked at Informa as Deputy Editor on its titles Eurofood and World Drinks Report (2008-10), then as Beverages Editor (covering soft drinks, beer, wine and spirits) on its agribusiness journal Foodnews (2010-11). He completed a PhD in English Literature at the University of London in 2015, and has since worked as a freelance writer. 

To read the full report, CLICK HERE

15 June, 2016

Due to a VERY active month of global bulk wine sales, sorting through South America’s difficult harvest and a very hot California grape market, this months report is somewhat abbreviated, but no less important!

Next month look for a revamped report not just in format but in substance and approach to reporting what is happening in the ... READ FULL REPORT HERE

May 2016 Ciatti World Report
24 May, 2016

As is often the case, the weather has brought change to the bulk wine market.  It has rained heavily in Chile over the past month, and as they were in the middle of harvest, the results have been dramatic.  Due to the fact that Chile exports so much of its’ yearly intake, the ripple effect has been felt throughout the wine world.  Coupled with a very difficult crush in Argentina, this heavily weather impacted harvest in Chile has made for an incredibly difficult South American campaign.  Prices of wines are on the rise in South America, and we are already seeing some upward pricing pressure in other varietal driven bulk wine... READ FULL REPORT HERE

13 April, 2016

The harvest in the Southern Hemisphere is in full swing, and in some cases winding down.  While reports of crop size are mixed among all countries, the biggest concern is coming from Argentina.  It seems that the previously reported weather conditions have had a dramatic effect on harvest size.   We are awaiting official numbers, but it is clear that this crop will be significantly smaller than previous years.  Likewise, Chile is reporting smaller returns from the vineyard, and the outcome is similarly attributed to the El Nino affect during the growing season.  Australia and New Zealand both report strong harvest numbers, but South Africa joins Chile and Argentina with lower volume expectations for the 2016 season.
The Northern Hemisphere sales season is well underway.  Sales of bulk wine in North America appear to be strong and moving at a faster pace than those of Europe.  The strong U.S. dollar has certainly helped U.S. importers find opportunities around the globe.  Despite receiving much needed rain this winter, drought conditions continue, albeit on a less severe scale. 



08 February, 2016

As we approach the harvest season in the Southern Hemisphere, weather conditions have some concerned in selected markets.  Chile and Argentina both have experienced cold and wet springs and an early summer.  Australia and South Africa are experiencing hot and dry summer seasons.  Bulk inventory remains stable in most of the markets in the Southern Hemisphere, with some value-end wines increasing in stock. 
The suppliers in the Europe are reporting warmer than normal winter seasons, which has caused for some concern about the coming 2016 harvest.  It is very early to make any predictions, as the frost season is still to come.  The California crop report will be released later in the week, and most expect that the report will show a decline in volume from the previous year. 


2015 California Winegrape Crush; A Tale of Two Harvests: Valley vs Coast
08 February, 2016

The Preliminary California Grape Crush Report released today reveals the overall California winegrape crush was down for a second year in a row. 2015 came in 5% lower than that of 2014 at 3,699,242 tons. The average winegrape price was also down, by 11%, from 2014 to $680. However, after looking at the numbers it is clear that 2015 was a tale of two harvests, the Valley districts were up overall by 5% with pricing down yet the Coastal areas were down significantly, by 29% with pricing up in general.

The state tonnage yields for Cabernet Sauvignon were down 11% from 511,000 tons to 455,000 tons (or an equivalent of 3.9 million cases of wine). The most dramatic Cabernet Sauvignon decreases were in Napa (-24%), Sonoma (-28%), Monterey (-41%) and SLO/Santa Barbara (-37%) – the exact appellations that have seen the most volume expansion over the last 5 years and where the industry really needed a healthy crop. – Chris Welch

Chardonnay, the largest variety in the state, was down substantially by -11.8% to a total of 633,000 tons, making it the lightest crop since 2011. The Chardonnay crop size was down the equivalent of 6 million cases, helping to erase the last 3 years of surpluses especially in the Coastal regions. Notable shortages were seen in the premium regions of Napa, Sonoma and Monterey which were down sharply between 26 to 32%. Overall quality was very good due to excellent ripening conditions during the harvest. – John White 

Pinot Grigio tonnage actually grew again this past season by 1.7% to 184,985 tons. Supply of Pinot Grigio remains tight and future plantings are needed. Consumer demand for Pinot Grigio continues to absorb all the volume produced here, along with substantial volumes coming from off shore. – John Ciatti

With a 25% lighter Pinot Noir Crop in both the interior and the coast one would think pricing on this varietal would be stronger. However, despite the lighter crop the Pinot Noir price in general was down 5% but still managed to be the highest price per ton of all varieties. – Todd Azevedo

The California Zinfandel crush was up 9% in 2015 totaling 387,958 tons. The majority of that increased volume came from District 13 which was up 31% from 2014 and mostly used for White Zinfandel production. District 11 (Lodi) which made up one third of the state’s production was down 4.8%. – Johnny Leonardo

The market continues to drop dramatically for domestic White Grape Juice Concentrate due to decreased industry demand in both the food beverage and value wine market segments. Because of these factors we expect to see continued massive pullouts of generic White grapes used for raisins and juice stock. With only 162,000 tons crushed, (92k of raisin varietals and 70k of table grapes) 2015 is the smallest crush on for White Grape Juice Concentrate on record. We’re still seeing very solid demand for Rubired grapes in the domestic wine industry. 2015 crop increased to 279,500 up 15.4% from 2014. – Greg MaGill



The Ciatti Company is the world’s largest and most comprehensive bulk wine and grape brokerage. Aside from its home base in San Rafael, California, seven additional offices around the world provide clients the kind of information and intelligence that today’s competitive global wine industry demands.

The company, founded in 1972, has deep roots in the wine industry, both in California and the countries in which the company operates. The current partnership includes industry professionals with over 135 years of collective experience including: John Ciatti, Greg Livengood, Glenn Proctor, John White, Chris Welch and Steve Dorfman.



04 January, 2016

As the 2016 year begins, the team at Ciatti wishes you and yours all the best in the coming year.  Once again, we thank you for your continued support of our company, and we appreciate all of our clients, friends and business associates.  Have a very happy and prosperous 2016.
The 2015 year, like almost every year in the grape and bulk wine market, was a series of peaks and valleys.  While supply was ample, and harvests strong in places like Chile and Australia, markets remained very active.  Buyers from China and North America jumped in and took advantage of good pricing and broad selection of many varietals.  For the most part, prices held firm, and grape markets look strong going forward for these two markets.  All agree that the 2015 crop in California was smaller than it has been in recent years, and while we wait for the official February California Crop Report to give us an actual tonnage number, we know that the market has been very active, as buyers have moved to shore up supply.  European markets have been active, with more supply coming from France and Italy, while the Spanish harvest declined slightly in volume.  Overall, given current demand for wine throughout the world, the supply from 2015 began to move us back towards balance.  



20 November, 2015

Visit Colorado these days and you can smell change in the air. It's the scent of legal marijuana for recreational use. If you're a resident 21 or older, you can walk in to a state-licensed store and buy up to an ounce of pot. But what does this mean for the wine industry? READ MORE

10 November, 2015

The annual Bulk Wine Fair in Amsterdam is once again coming up on the calendar. Given the recent crop estimates in Europe, many are expecting the Italians will be making their offers in full force. All harvest estimates seem to be holding steady through the end of the growing season. Both France and Italy look to have taken in much more fruit than last year, while Spain and The United States seem to have taken a step back in volume. The lighter crop in the United States has caused some increased market activity, especially in the premium coastal regions.

Activity in the Southern Hemisphere market is mixed. While Chile, Australia and New Zealand all seem to have good market movement, South Africa and Argentina continue to be a bit slower. Diageo continues to move towards exiting the wine business, as it was recently announced that their wine holdings in Argentina have been sold.

Read the full report HERE

19 October, 2015

The 2015 Northern Hemisphere harvest is coming to an end. Estimates are coming in from around the globe and the results are mixed. Italy and France seem to have enjoyed a good year, in terms of both quality and quantity, while Spanish suppliers are reporting lower yields and smaller production than those seen in 2014. The report in California similarly describes a year of lower yield and a decrease in overall production. We won’t know until the official reports are released, but the expectations of lower available volume in Spain and California have served to ignite activity in the bulk market...

To Read the Full Report CLICK HERE

Ciatti Company is Seeking Used Oak Barrels
05 October, 2015

The Ciatti Company is  looking for used oak barrels for Clients. If you have quantities of 50 or more oak barrels available to sell over the next 2-3 months, please let us know.

Specifically, we are looking for barrels that fit the following criteria;

  • Used oak barrels –  59 gal size
  • Prior wine type: both red and white wine acceptable
  • Age: 5-8 years old
  • Recently emptied
  • Price:  Subject to Age & Condition

 If interested in selling, please email Rob Bolch at: rob@ciatti.comPh. 1 707 738 4866 Email:

14 September, 2015

“Like sands through the hourglass, so are the days of our lives” was a quote television catchphrase from a long-running soap opera, which is appropriate for this global market update. 
With harvest in full swing in the Northern Hemisphere, buyers are truing up inventories and ensuring all programs will have good quality supply.  The question at hand is:  what varietals will be short, what varietals will be long, and from where?
Meanwhile, all is now known about the 2015 Southern Hemisphere harvest, and suppliers are readying their wines for wine contract shipments and for the sampling of wines not yet sold.  Overall, due to both supply and economic factors, we see a break in the logjam of over-supply, with buyers looking ahead to 2016 purchases.
For avid readers of this global report, please pay special attention to the South Africa page, where there is another African country profiled, and to the Buyer’s Page on Alcohol products from our contributing partner, Andy Bivona.
Another busy trade show season starts with the Bulk Wine Exhibition in Amsterdam November 24th and 25th.  See you there!


07 August, 2015

August has brought the heat to the Northern Hemisphere. All across Europe, reports are of very high temperatures, and growers, specifically in Spain, are concerned about the potential affect on crop size. Problems with ripening have been reported, and we will find out in the coming weeks if the European crop will be down significantly from last year. Similarly, in California, reports are beginning to come in regarding crop size, and early indications are for a smaller than average year in some areas of the state. Predictions vary by region, but the coastal regions appear to be experiencing a light harvest year.

Official 2015 crop numbers are beginning to be reported in the Southern Hemisphere, with Australia giving an average sized crop. The supply side has not changed much over the past few years in Australia, with the premium areas seeming to be enjoying the majority of the profitability. South American suppliers welcome the recent snow, which would appear to relieve the water shortage conditions that have been in effect.

The bulk market has been very active over the past thirty days, with buyers in Europe and North America taking advantage of great buying opportunities. Currency fluctuation continues to move pricing in both directions and buyers continue to search for the sweet spots. The market seems to be moving again towards balance, and given the hot weather in Europe and the anticipation of an average to slightly less than average forecast in California, it seems unlikely that we will be far out of balance for the remainder of 2015.


13 July, 2015

July brings the “Dog Days of Summer” to the Northern Hemisphere.  The Greeks and the Romans believed that the “Dog Days” were an evil time.  Here’s how John Brady’s Clavis Calendaria put it: “The Sea boiled, the Wine turned sour, dogs grew mad, and all other creatures became languid; causing to man, among other diseases, burning fevers, hysterics, and phrensies.”  While the wine does not appear to be turning sour, some suppliers in selected markets are moving wines at deeply discounted rates in order to make space for the coming harvest.  Vintage predictions vary in the Northern Hemisphere, with the general theme being that most suppliers expect to have an average or slightly larger than average intake. 
The markets of the Southern Hemisphere remain active, with many buyers finalizing contracts in South America and New Zealand.  Prices in South Africa on red wines have moved, with the help of currency values, into an area that makes them very attractive to buyers in Europe and North America. 
As currency fluctuation has become such a large part of the bulk wine market in recent years, all eyes are now on Greece during these Dog Days of Summer.  We don’t expect to see boiling seas or souring wine, but we may see some “hysterics and phrensies” in the currency market in the coming weeks. 
The bulk market is moving at a normal pace for this time of year, and pricing movement will depend on financial markets and the actual size of the coming harvest in the Northern Hemisphere.  It remains a good time to be a bulk buyer, but grape producers around the world are constantly evaluating their prospects, and plantings have significantly slowed in most regions.  


15 June, 2015

While the summer is just starting in the Northern Hemisphere and trade fair season is drawing to a close, thoughts have turned to earnest selling of new vintage wines and the upcoming harvest.  The major fairs in Europe are the Bulk Wine Exposition in Amsterdam in November, ProWein in Germany in March, VinItaly in April, London Wine Trade Fair and VinExpo in Bordeaux, which is starting this week.  While some expand and others wane, the opportunities to develop relationships and global business, remains at the heart of all of them.  The Ciatti stand in Amsterdam, Prowein and London had strong activity as always, and Ciatti representatives at the other major and minor shows around the world report strong interest and growth opportunities for the global consuming public.

It is clear, after talking to suppliers from all around the globe, that there is ample supply of bulk wine in the market.  Discussion of lower-priced offers continues.  Given the general oversupply, however, the trend towards higher and more premium priced programs has piqued the interest of buyers seeking to exploit the trend.  While this remains problematic for larger supply areas, it confirms the trend toward “premiumization" around the world, and the rising prices for varietal wines in premium and super-premium growing areas around the world.

Markets in the Southern Hemisphere remain active, with pricing in Chile, South Africa and Australia continues to be attractive to global buyers.  Argentine suppliers continue to struggle and concentrate production has decreased in favor of wine.  Upcoming crops in both Europe and the United States look decent so far, but as the old saying goes: “It’s a long way 'til harvest". 


13 May, 2015

Harvest is coming to an end in the Southern Hemisphere and most volume estimates remain unchanged.  The total crop size for all of the Southern Hemisphere should fall short of the 2014 result.  Argentina and New Zealand are experiencing the biggest declines in volume, while South Africa and Australia look to be very similar to the previous year.  Chile has rebounded from a frost‐stricken 2014 crop, but looks like it will not reach the same levels as the historic 2013 harvest.

Bulk market activity has been strong in many Southern Hemisphere markets, especially in New Zealand, as the small harvest has prompted buyers to take early action.  Chilean prices have proven to be very enticing to international buyers, and many contracts have been closed over the past month.  Australia is reporting strong export numbers, and suppliers at the value end of the market are experiencing growth in demand.  

In the Northern Hemisphere, the talk continues to be about the drought in California.  While the dry weather conditions remain, no significant decrease in the coming harvest is expected.  Growers remain confident that they will produce an average sized crop, and buyers and sellers are acting accordingly.  The bulk wine market remains very active in France, and inventory remains low on most varietals.  Spanish and Italian markets also remain active, particularly on the higher quality wines.  In total, the bulk market is active and pricing has stabilized in ... Read the full report HERE

Do you have winegrapes for sale in 2015 and/or beyond?
01 May, 2015

The Ciatti Company is in the process of updating our winegrape inventory database and would like to know if you have winegrapes for sale for 2015 and/or beyond.

We are constantly talking with and receiving new inquiries from winegrape buyers across the state and it is important for us to have an updated list of available winegrapes at the ready when speaking with these buyers.

If you have winegrapes available for 2015 please call, fax or email this information to Jennifer Forrest in the Ciatti office.  Jennifer can be reached at phone 415/458-8865, fax 415/458-5160 or Email


We appreciate you thinking of Ciatti when you have the need to buy or sell winegrapes.

09 April, 2015

The Harvest season is moving along in the Southern Hemisphere. Reports on volume are mixed, as Chile expects to have rebounded from a short 2014 crop, Argentina and New Zealand look to be down, and Australia and South Africa seem to be holding steady. Quality looks good in most regions, with some issues reported in selected markets. Bulk wine volume is balanced to slightly long in many Southern Hemisphere markets, but sales activity has been brisk in recent weeks.

In the Northern Hemisphere, the French market continues to be very active, with prices holding firm on most varieties. Prosecco and Pinot Grigio sales have been strong from Italy and the falling Euro has helped with exports to the United States. California reports sufficient inventory for most items, and the continuing drought remains high on growers’ lists of concerns. The bulk market has picked up pace in California and older inventory is beginning to disappear.

CLICK HERE for the full April 2015 Global Market Update

11 March, 2015

The bulk wine market remains active and the supplies of most varietals and generics from around the world are plentiful. This should make for some very dynamic conversations at the impending ProWein fair in Dusseldorf, which starts Sunday, March 15th. This fair continues to grow and has proven to be one of the most substantial events for suppliers and buyers alike. We look forward to seeing all of you at the show. Please come visit us at the Ciatti stand: Hall 9 A17. We will have bulk samples to taste from all regions.


The Argentine government has revised the initial crush forecast numbers, confirming a harvest of 2.6 million metric tons. They have also communicated that they plan to subsidize the price of Criolla grapes with $0.75 per kilogram (US $0.087) and also give $1 (US $0.11) to the wineries that export generic white wines. They have also announced that 35% of grapes are required to go to be made into grape juice concentrate. All of these measures are intended to remove up to 200 million liters of generic white wines in Argentina, in order to keep the price stable and growers quiet. The price for other grape varieties is similar to that of last year, even though inflation continues to increase. Meanwhile, sales remain quiet.


02 March, 2015

The Ciatti Company is  looking for used oak barrels for Clients. If you have quantities of 50 or more oak barrels available to sell over the next 2-3 months, please let us know.

Specifically, we are looking for barrels that fit the following criteria;

  • Used oak barrels –  59 gal size
  • Prior wine type: both red and white wine acceptable
  • Age: 5-8 years old
  • Recently emptied
  • Price:  Subject to Age & Condition

 If interested in selling, please email Rob Bolch at: rob@ciatti.comPh. 1 707 738 4866 Email:

Do you have Winegrapes For Sale for 2015 Harvest Year or Beyond?
23 February, 2015

The Ciatti Company is in the process of updating our winegrape inventory database and would like to know if you have winegrapes for sale for 2015 and/or beyond.

We are constantly talking with and receiving new inquiries from winegrape buyers across the state and it is important for us to have an updated list of available winegrapes at the ready when speaking with these buyers.

If you have winegrapes available for 2015 please call, fax or email this information to Jennifer Forrest in the Ciatti office.  Jennifer can be reached at phone 415/458-8865, fax 415/458-5160 or Email

We've include a quick FORM that you can use to fax over if you are interested otherwise feel free to get the information to us in any format that is convenient for you. Click here to access the form.


We appreciate you thinking of Ciatti when you have the need to buy or sell winegrapes.


Global Market Update - February 2015 Volume 6 Issue No. 2
18 February, 2015

 The California grape crush report for 2014 was released on February 10th, and results were generally in line with expectations. The crop was down in volume from the record 2013 harvest, with reds retreating more than white varieties. Export sales are driven by the grapes coming from the San Joaquin Valley, and intake numbers were down for almost all varieties across the board in that region. We don’t expect a big change in market pricing due to the release of the crop report, as most producers had already estimated that the wine grape crop would be very close to the 3.9 million ton number that was reported yesterday. The French bulk market remains very strong, with prices trending in an upward direction on most varietals. The small crop in Southern France has caused many buyers to move quickly, and supply does not seem capable of meeting current demand. We have seen a lot of action in the Italian market, with Pinot Grigio and Prosecco wines now at the top of many buyers list of needs. Spanish producers are also reporting low inventory of 2014 wines and prices have remained stable. Harvest has begun in the Southern Hemisphere. Argentine suppliers continue to face very tough economic headwinds. Despite those issues, Good harvest conditions give hope for exceptional quality in 2015, and producers continue to have good product to market. The weather has been slightly less cooperative in Australia, with reports of mildew being made in some parts of the country. Producers are hopeful that the relative weakening of the Australian dollar against the US dollar will result in a boost in export sales. The harvest is not yet underway in Chile, but expectations are for a crop that will be larger than that of last year. The bulk market remains steady, with good opportunities for buyers in many markets. Suppliers and buyers alike are getting ready for what should be a very eventful ProWein in March.


To view the entire report CLICK HERE

California Market Report February 2015
13 February, 2015

North Coast Overall the 2014 harvest will go down as one of the most bountiful in the history of Napa and Sonoma Counties. The last three years have produced historically large crops and that has gone a long way in replenishing some of the inventory in the market that had been depleted by the shorter 2010 and 2011 harvests. We continue to see average grape prices rise for most of the varieties in these areas with especially large jumps, 5-7 %, for Cabernet in Sonoma and Napa. The demand continues to be strong in Napa and Sonoma because case sales of wines over $15 per bottle has been strong for the last two years. There are some areas that are weaker than others though – with concerns centered on Chardonnay and Merlot. We believe the market is relatively balanced and that continued increased demand should work through the available inventory. 

To view the entire report CLICK HERE



11 February, 2015



Despite preliminary concerns of drought 2014 California Winegrape Harvest healthy but not huge

(February 10, 2015, San Rafael, CA) – The Preliminary California Grape Crush Report released today reveals the 2014 winegrape crush was down 7.9 % to 3,910,178 from the 2013 record high winegrape crush of 4,245,852 tons.  This is welcome news for the California wine industry which currently has large volumes of older vintage bulk wine available for sale.

Cabernet Sauvignon has continued to see more plantings in many areas of the state, in the central valley a few years ago and more recently on the North Coast and Central Coast.  2014 will go down as California's third largest production of Cabernet with a total of 510,958 tons, only the 2005 and 2013 were larger.  As with other varieties this will be the third year in a row we have seen healthy production from Cabernet in the state.  Demand for Cabernet over the last year has continued to be extremely strong in the North Coast for both bulk and grapes where there is little available inventory and strong demand by buyers, but in the rest of California and especially the Central Valley the demand has weakened somewhat and is not nearly as strong.   – Glenn Proctor

Chardonnay weighed in with another above average harvest at 715,712 tons and with statewide average pricing holding steady.  This makes the third year in a row that California’s predominate variety produced a healthy sized crop, thus keeping winery tanks brimming with wine destined for both case good demands and surplus bulk.  The total Chardonnay harvest was down only 5.6% and variable region to region, with notable decreases in Lodi, and increases in Monterey.  Overall quality was very good to excellent. – John White

Pinot Grigio tonnage was up a mere 1.7% to 181,800 tons.  Given the continued sales growth in the US Market, Pinot Grigio will remain a very tight variety.  88% of all the Pinot Grigio grapes are grown in the interior of California. – John Ciatti

Even with decreased yields, down 6.5%, from the record harvest of 2013 the California Pinot Noirgrape market remained strong. Pricing increased very little from the 2013 to 2014 harvests, up less than 1% to an average of $1,784.  On the Central Coast Pinot Noir had another vintage for the record books coming in at 90,552 tons, Monterey making up more than 68% of the total tons crushed. North Coast Pinot Noir grapes were down approx. 16% from the previous vintage. While pricing increased, up 5% from the previous year.  Sonoma County makes up roughly 70% of the Pinot Noir tonnage in the north coast. – Todd Azevedo

After two consecutive large harvests, the state’s 2014 Zinfandel production saw the largest decrease in total tons of any major variety. California produced a total of 354,810 tons down 24% from the record crush of 2013. While the North and Central Coast percentages were down significantly, the largest decrease in volume came from the Interior regions with Lodi down 30% and the Fresno/Madera area down 17.4%. - Johnny Leonardo

With the 2014 harvest the Rubired grape crop continues to remains marginally stable as most of these grapes have been planted under long-term contracts and yields remain large enough to be financially viable.  While these grapes are very hardy, we are starting to see some quality issues in the areas that have higher concentrations of salts in the ground water due to the lack of underground aquifer replenishments. For these reasons we are not surprised by the volume decrease of 5.3%. 2014 volume was 242,204 tons vs 255,640 in 2013.  In addition we saw a price point drop to an average of $301.48 vs. $327.41 which we are assuming was due to lower color and sugar bonuses.

2014 Raisin and Table grape crop will go down as one of the smallest harvest in the last decade. With a total volume crushed of all Generic Whites coming in at 250,259 tons, down almost 50%.   – Greg Magill


The Ciatti Company is the world’s largest and most comprehensive bulk wine and grape brokerage.  Aside from its home base in San Rafael, California, seven additional offices around the world provide clients the kind of information and intelligence that today’s competitive global wine industry demands.

The company, founded in 1972, has deep roots in the wine industry, both in California and the countries in which the company operates.  The current partnership includes industry professionals with over 135 years of collective experience including: John Ciatti, Greg Livengood, Glenn Proctor, John White, Chris Welch and Steve Dorfman.


Contact: Ciatti Company, Lora Parnell, 1101 Fifth Ave # 170, San Rafael, CA  94901 Phone (415) 458 – 5150 Fax (415) 458-5160

Twitter @CiattiCompany


California Department of Food and Agriculture will release the Preliminary Grape Crush Report for 2014 harvest on Tuesday, February 10, 2015 at noon
09 February, 2015




Ciatti Global Wine & Grape Brokers Comment


(February 6, 2015, San Rafael, CA) – The California Department of Food and Agriculture will release the Preliminary Grape Crush Report for 2014 harvest on Tuesday, February 10, 2015 at noon. 

The Ciatti Company will be supplying information regarding our interpretation and analysis of these results and will be available to provide comments and answer any of your questions immediately following its release.

Please call Glenn Proctor at the Ciatti Company 415-458-5150 for remarks and insight.  We will also be issuing a formal Press Release by 2 pm with further information and observations.


The Ciatti Company is the world’s largest and most comprehensive bulk wine and grape brokerage.  Aside from its home base in San Rafael, California, seven additional offices around the world provide clients the kind of information and intelligence that today’s competitive global wine industry demands.

The company, founded in 1972, has deep roots in the wine industry, both in California and the countries in which the company operates.  The current partnership includes industry professionals with over 135 years of collective experience including: John Ciatti, Greg Livengood, Glenn Proctor, John White, Chris Welch and Steve Dorfman.


Contact: Ciatti Company, Lora Parnell, 1101 Fifth Ave # 170, San Rafael, CA  94901 Phone (415) 458 – 5150 Fax (415) 458-5160

Twitter @CiattiCompany

03 February, 2015

The Ciatti Company is  looking for used oak barrels for Clients. If you have quantities of 50 or more oak barrels available to sell over the next 2-3 months, please let us know.

Specifically, we are looking for barrels that fit the following criteria;

  • Used oak barrels –  59 gal size
  • Prior wine type: both red and white wine acceptable
  • Age: 5-8 years old
  • Recently emptied
  • Price:  Subject to Age & Condition

 If interested in selling, please email Rob Bolch at: rob@ciatti.comPh. 1 707 738 4866 Email:

January 2015 Ciatti World Report
05 January, 2015

Good morning and welcome to the start of 2015, at least on a calendar basis. While we all tend to work harvest to harvest, the Ciatti World Report hopes to capture the ongoing fluctuations in the wine business from a supply side month to month around the globe!

As we did last year, we would like to offer you this first report of 2015 as a primer to what may be next for us in the global wine business. The year of 2014 had many bumps and grinds along the way, with larger or perhaps larger than expected harvests in some areas of the world, while in a select few markets the supply stream was down a bit. The great news is that the wine business continues to grow year over year, as people continue to savor our wines the world over. Regardless of the growth in the Craft Beer and Spirit categories, we continue to attract drinkers who see the value in the lifestyle that wine offers them on a daily basis. We have often stated that we may have a bit of oversupply today (country and varietal dependent of course), but we also have increased consumption, just not at the level that can keep up with the volumes created between 2012‐2014. To that end, we need to drink our way through it collectively. Luckily, consumers of our wines are looking for us all to continue to produce quality wines for many years to come. We at Ciatti will continue to do our part in moving us towards a balanced position through brokering or drinking or both!!

Finally, remember, this January 2015 World Report offers a consolidated view from the year that was, with some predictions for the year that may be. So, sit back, enjoy an early cup of coffee and start the year off with us!

We hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and we look forward to a fruitful 2015 (pun intended!)



17 November, 2014

The harvests have all come to an end in the Northern Hemisphere, and it looks as though
France has regained its position as the largest producer in the world. French growers looked to
have rebounded from disappointing volume results in 2013 with a much better looking crop in
2014. While all regions did not participate in the gain, as Languedoc notably did not have large
output, the French growers overall are feeling good about the size of the harvest. The second
factor allowing France to regain its status as top producer is the size of the harvest in Spain.
The Spanish harvest is down measurably from 2013, and this decrease in volume seems to have
helped balance the previous over‐supply situation. Quality and volume both seem to be an
issue in Italy, as adverse weather conditions have caused for a very difficult harvest in 2014.
California growers agree that the crop this year is a good one, but not nearly the size of the
record crop from the previous year.
Many producers in the Southern Hemisphere are now nearing the end of the frost season, and
despite some reports of frost, no major damage is expected from the larger production regions.
While it is still very early for harvest estimates, most areas are reporting normal growing
seasons thus far.
The bulk market continues to move forward, and many players will meet in Amsterdam in the
coming days. Please come visit the Ciatti stand at the show, and we look forward to seeing
those of you who will attend.






Global Market Update - October, 2014
13 October, 2014

Harvest is coming to an end in the Northern Hemisphere, and like the Southern Hemisphere earlier in the year, it looks to be smaller than the volume produced in the previous year.   Spain and Italy both look to be sharply down on volume when compared to 2013, while France looks to rebound from the small crop of last year.   Estimates from the United States are now coming in, and California looks to be down, as expected, from the record setting crop of 2013.   Based on current estimates, the combined Northern and Southern Hemisphere crops should be much closer to the results of the previous five years average, compared to the much larger than average crop of last year.  

The bulk market for exporters continues to be slightly on the slower end of the activity spectrum, with plenty of stock available in most markets.   Sales have picked up a little over the past thirty days, as harvest reports from the Northern Hemisphere have been less than enthusiastic in regards to volume. Given the smaller harvest globally in 2014, expectations are that the available wine inventories will move from a long position back towards balanced.

Read the full report & current Ciatti pricing

Global Market Update - September 2014
17 September, 2014

It’s harvest time in the Northern Hemisphere, and early estimates compared to the previous year are beginning to be reported. The overall European harvest looks like it will be down, as Spain and Italy are both looking to take a step back from strong 2013 results. Predictions are for a lower than average crop in Italy, with some serious quality concerns.  Spain is expecting a crop of average size, after the huge crop last year. France looks to be having a larger crop that least year, near the historical average. Most estimates have the California crop coming in smaller than last year, but perhaps similar to the 2012 crop. The drought in California does not appear to have had a major effect on this years’ crop, but many fear that continuing lack of rainfall could have a large impact on 2015 results.

In the Southern Hemisphere, Argentine suppliers continue to struggle with difficult economic conditions.  Opportunities for varietals like Malbec have increased, but the outside economic influence has many concerned about the future.  New Zealand suppliers continue to enjoy strong world‐wide demand, and it seems that supply will allow for an increase in sales.  All eyes in Australia are on the unfolding story at Treasury Wine Estates, as multiple bidders attempt to purchase the company. 

Read the full report & current Ciatti pricing

California Market Report - September 2014
09 September, 2014

The 2014 Harvest is in full swing. The good news is that the crop looks to be solid but not a bumper crop. Given the current levels of wine the industry has in tanks, this is a positive thing. Activity continues to be the weakest for both grapes and bulk wine in the Central Valley. We believe a moderate crop will help to stabilize the market in the future, especially if we continue to see case good growth. Quality looks good so far, and harvest has been earlier than normal throughout the state.

Our thoughts go out to our friends in Napa. Even though there was damage and loss, we are so grateful that there was no loss of life. We know you will all continue to move forward and prosper.

Full report

Ciatti World Grape Report for the Month of August 2014
11 August, 2014

With tanks full around the world, we decided to offer a brief respite from the detailed version of the Ciatti Global Market Update. If you are reading this in the Southern Hemisphere we hope you are settling in for a nice winter as the wines finish and ready themselves for sale. If you reside in the Northern Hemisphere we hope that you are well rested from your summer vacations and ready for an eventful harvest season.

In the following pages, we hope that our direct and to the point, albeit abbreviated country comments will offer you some quick insight into the market as we see it today. As an added bonus however, Greg Magill has taken this opportunity to do a country by country round up of the World of Concentrate.

We would like to thank you all for being loyal readers, and will bring you a full and detailed report in September.

Read the full report here!


Global export pricing: USD per liter

Currency Conversion Rates as of August 11, 2014

For list of prices click here!


July Ciatti Global Market Update
11 July, 2014

While the world has cheered, cried, yelled, screamed and held its collective breathe during the 2014 FIFA World Cup, we at Ciatti have not been immune to the fever of this year’s play. The verbal rivalry between countries has been, well, somewhat less than reserved and in some cases downright bitter……but then again, the most ardent of them was from Canada.

The bulk market has been much the same.  Inventories are, in general, available from around the world, so the competitive spirit is alive and well on the brokering front to get as many people the wines they need from around the world.  Higher‐end wines have fared better during this time, while more commercial areas still have a ways to go in order to work through the 2012 and 2013 inventories that are currently in tank.  We feel that while inventories are firm, the good news is that we continue to consume wine at an increasing rate, in spite of the surge of craft beers and spirits.

So, while you are waiting for the final game between Germany and Argentina to begin, please take a look at some very good stats by country and a great Buyer's Corner that focuses on the expanding Asian market. Finally, while watching the game, remember the legendary English footballer's Gary Lineker's famous quote:

"Soccer is a game for 22 people that run around, play the ball, and one referee who makes a slew of mistakes, and in the end Germany always wins."

Full Global Market Update

July Export Market Pricing

Ciatti World Report June 2014
16 June, 2014

The summer has begun in the Northern Hemisphere, and the London Wine Trade Fair has come to a close. The annual fair has now moved to a new location in the heart of London, and this new venue seems to have sparked new energy to what had been a fading event. The Ciatti stand was busy for most of the three day event, and we thank those of you who had the opportunity to visit us during the show.

It is clear, after spending several days with suppliers from all around the globe, that there is ample supply of bulk wine in the market. Most of the talk of oversupply revolved around the market situation in Spain. Rumors of low priced offers were confirmed, as many suppliers have very attractive offers on both generic and selected varietals from the La Mancha region.

Markets in the Southern Hemisphere remain active, with Chilean and Australian pricing continuing to be attractive to global buyers. Argentine suppliers continue to struggle, and it appears that the government will again study ways to offer support to the market. 

The direction of the bulk market will now be dictated by the size of the coming crops in both Europe and the United States, and buyers and sellers alike now wait to see how those crops will size up. Predictions vary, and weather can change expectations quickly, but we know the next sixty days will be interesting.

Read the full report

California Market Report - June 2014
03 June, 2014

There is a strong level of optimism in the industry about future growth. But given the past two large crops and the expected average plus crop of 2014 the market for grapes and wine has slowed. These challenges seem to be greatest in the Central Valley where large amounts of bulk wine remain on the market. Three large crops in a row could lead to a significant short term supply correction over the last half of the year.

California Wine & Grapes by Region

North Coast


As we look back at the first half of 2014,we can definitely say Cabernet Sauvignon isthe most in demand variety in the North Coast. Current grape inventories, especially in Lake, Mendocino, and Sonoma are verytight. In general terms the overall market for grapes has been as healthy as one could expect coming off of two back to back large vintages. Other varieties have also had some activity, Pinot Noir, Zinfandel, Sauvignon Blanc, and premium appellated Chardonnay have seen relatively strong demand. Transaction activity was brisk from mid January to mid April. The market has slowed somewhat as we seen expectations for an above average crop become more probable. We have seen buyers be more hesitant the last 4 weeks and unwilling to chase anything but Cabernet Sauvignon.No one knows how big the 2014 crop will end being at the end of the season – but the potential for another above normal crop has caused a slow in the early season activity. Also, harvest has the potential to be 2-3 weeks early!

Bulk Wine

The North Coast bulk market has been a bumpy ride depending on what you were selling and from where. Here are some highlights to demonstrate that point:

Cabernet Sauvignon: Strategies to source Cabernet Sauvignon from anywhere in the North Coast continues to dominate the headlines. Sonoma and Lake Counties continue to sizzle with lot after lot continuing to sell withlittle difficulty. After seeing little movement in the first two months of the year, 2012 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is selling in the $30 - $38 per gallon range with brisk sales and 2013 Napa Valley Cabernet sales are now getting going in the $26 - $32 per gallon.

Merlot: For as hot as Cabernet is, one would think the Merlot market would not be as tepid as it is. There is still carry over stock from 2012 that can at least be used as a Cab blender, can it not? Sonoma County Merlot is readily available at $12-$15 and Napa Valley at $15-$18. Mendocino and Lake County are quiet butthere have been a few sales in the $7-$10 range.

Chardonnay: Mendocino and Lake County Chardonnay sales continue to be sluggish with sellers today willing to take a $5 California appellation price in order to get some inventory moved. Sonoma County Chardonnay sales have really picked up since February with good volumes moving between $12 - $16.

Pinot Noir: Two record harvests in a row? Another good crop on the way? So what? Pinot Noir continues to see demand from all appellations with Russian River and Sonoma Coast leading the way. Pricing has been in the $20-$25 range with some higher end barrel lots exceeding $30. For a buyer, the opportunity for Pinot Noir today looks to be in Carneros, where there is at least decent inventories to build on.

Zinfandel: The two big harvests in a row have not been kind to the Zinfandel bulk market. Prices for Sonoma County Zin has been all over the board. Some larger lots moving in the $12 range and some higher end lots moving closer to $20. But there seems to be limited demand at the moment, soit will be interesting to see what happensover the summer as to whether this product can move at close to a decent price.

Central Coast


The Central Coast has seen a lot of activity over the past two vintages. Entering the 2014 season,over 70% of the available fruit has been contracted. This year buyers have continued to look atCabernet Sauvignon, but many sellers are trying to bundle other varieties such as Merlot, Chardonnay, and White Riesling with Cabernet Sauvignon.Buyers have tempered their demand for Central Coast Chardonnay, with potential yields looking healthy and ample supplies on the bulk market. Pinot Noir was a hot item in the first quarter of this year, but activityhas slowed after set. Prices for Pinot Noir have continued to remain steady to date. One area we have seen demand growth in is District 6 (North Section of Central Coast AVA) , with more buyers moving into the area to source their Central Coast labels. Grape activity has slowed on the Central Coast, from earlier in the year. The reduced activity is a combination of both larger amounts of Bulk wine supply and the potential size of the 2014 crop.

Bulk Wine

Bulk wine inventories on the Central Coast still remain in ample supply for most varieties. Most activity has been focused on Cabernet Sauvignon; however asother Coastal regions have seen large price increases, Central Coast supply remains available and prices for Cabernet Sauvignon have remained relatively stable at $12 to $16. Monterey Pinot Noir has also kept up with the action and moves in the $15 to $18 range, whileselect lots of Santa Barbara Pint Noir have commanded considerably more. Early year activity in Pinot Grigio hascleaned out most remaining inventories which had been selling in the $7 to $9 range. On the other side of the spectrum we have larger inventories of Coastal Chardonnay which moves steadily yet moderately at $8 to $12 and Merlot, which has had limited sales in the $7 to $9 range. Central Coast buyers seem to be cautious and watchful of storage space as we proceed towards another harvest. 

Lodi / Central Valley


The Interior region vineyards have made it through bloom and appear to have an average set. Bunch counts by variety seem about average with some varieties showing slightly larger counts than last year in the Southern Interior. As you travel North, cluster counts tend to be slightly off versus 2013. Lodi, Chardonnay looks good and seems to have normal berry sizing, but Zinfandel seems to be significantly lighter and have lower cluster counts. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot look average at best but have seen some shatter as a result of a mid May heat spell. With summer temperatures approaching and the drought affects still uncertain, individual bunch size may struggle to have average weight. Buying activity has been slow with only a few buyers for select varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon, Petite Sirah, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, and Pinot Grigio. Most of the grapes are under long term contracts in the Valley and selling uncontracted grapes has been a challenge so far this year.

Bulk Wine

Inventories of Central Valley varieties are readily available. Overall movements this year have been less than robust and these inventories are becoming "heavier" as we head into the summer months. We feel the effect of the two large harvests of 2012 and 2013. Wineries with full tanks have been absent from buying on the open market. This is causing concern and capacity problems for many speculative sellers. Specifically we have had demand for Pinot Grigio, Cabernet Sauvignon and other heavy reds, with moderate movement. Many other varieties including Muscat, Zinfandel and Sauvignon Blanc have seen sparse activity, surprising as those were the hottest items a couple of years back. Chardonnay sales have been slow in the valley, hurt by readily available amounts of coastal Chardonnay. An "average" valley crop overall would be welcomed and a hopeful reality given the current statewide drought conditions.


Partner/Broker John Ciatti M.415/264-0762

Partner/Broker Steve Dorfman M.707/321-3843

Partner/Broker Greg Livengood M.415/497-5032

Partner/Broker Glenn Proctor M.707/337-0609

Partner/Broker Chris Welch M.415/298-8316

Partner/Broker  John White M.415/250-0685

Broker  Todd Azevedo M.415/265-6943

Broker  Johnny Leonardo M.415/717-4438

Broker Greg MaGill M.559/977-4040

Ciatti World Report May2014
14 May, 2014

Updated reports are coming in on harvests around the world. The government projections in Argentina have changed dramatically over the past month. Earlier crop reports had projected a 30% decline in volume, but new reports now estimate only a 6% decline from the previous year. In Italy, an updated harvest report now shows that they had a much larger than previously reported crop in 2013, and now holds the title of largest wine producer in the world. Chile continues to report a significantly smaller crop than last year, while Australia and South Africa are expecting average returns. 

The California bulk market has experienced some slowdown, especially in the central valley region. Inventories remain high on several varietals, and storage capacity will be at a premium. Crop estimate reports are mixed in California and it remains to be seen what effects, if any, the draught will have on the coming crop. 

Full World Report, May 2014 - Ciatti Pricing, May 2014

Ciatti World Report April 2014
16 April, 2014

Producers in much of the Southern Hemisphere are now in the last stage of their 2014 harvests. Reports remain unchanged out of Argentina and Chile, with both countries reporting substantial decreases in output from the previous year. Australia also looks to be slightly down, however, New Zealand producers continue to expect larger numbers than last year. South Africa is holding steady with reports for an average sized crop and good quality in most regions.

The bulk market in the Northern Hemisphere continues to be varied, based on region. Spanish suppliers are struggling under the weight of very heavy supply. Spanish pricing has continued to drop over the past month, with many expecting further declines in May and June. Conversely, the French market is quite strong with limited supply, especially for white and rose wines. California producers are looking towards the 2014 harvest, and production capacity seems to be the greatest concern at this time.

The annual ProWeinshow in Germany was once again a very well attended and successful wine fair. More than 48,000 wine professionals visited the show, and most of the 4,830 exhibitors had very active stands. Bulk wine buyers were active during the event, with many transactions being finalized over the three-day period. The Ciattistand was busy, and we thank all of you that were able to visit us this year. We look forward to seeing many of you again in London in June.

Full World Report April 2014 & Ciatti Bulk Wine Pricing, April 2014


Ciatti World Report March 2014
14 March, 2014

It was reported in February that producers in both Chile and Argentina were expecting smaller than average harvest results. Updated reports confirm that volumes will be light in both markets. The bulk wine market has already reacted, with prices in both markets ending their recent downward slide, and now have now stabilized or even increased for some varietals. Australia and South Africa are moving through their harvest seasons, and reports are mixed regarding volume results. The intense heat, followed by rain, caused for a pause in the harvest in Australia. South African producers have also had some difficult weather conditions. Predictions in both markets are for crops that will be similar to, or slightly smaller than, last year. Despite the adverse weather conditions, both markets are reporting good quality for grapes that have come to the crushers.!

Spain appears to be the one bulk market that is currently experiencing over supply. Pricing has been soft, and European buyers are finding good deals on many varietals. California finally received much needed rain in February, however, draught conditions remain, and most feel that the crop size will ultimately be determined by the coming frost season.

The bulk market remains active worldwide, and both buyers and sellers are very excited about the upcoming ProWein show in Germany. We look forward to seeing all of you at the show, and please come visit us at the CiattiStand. We are located in Hall 2, and will have bulk samples to taste from all regions.

Full March 2014 Report (pdf)

Ciatti pricing March 2014 (pdf)

Ciatti World Report February 2014
21 February, 2014

After several months of a relatively low level of activity, the bulk market “broke out” in the middle of January. Buyers, perhaps concerned about potential supply issues in California and the Southern Hemisphere, ramped up their purchases over the past few weeks. Suppliers in California continue to look for drought relief, as 2013 proved to be the driest year for California in recorded history. There continues to be a debate about the potential size of the drought-affected 2014 California crop. Both Chile and Argentina are reporting lower crop projections, as frost and other weather issues appear to have damaged yield potential in both markets. Australia and New Zealand both could see healthy outputs, although some growers in Australia may face some issue caused by the recent heat wave.

Suppliers seem to be gaining renewed strength, as demand numbers look promising in many markets. Chile has reported a record volume of exports in 2013, and current bulk pricing makes the Chilean market extremely attractive for red wine buyers. South African suppliers have a low level of carryover stock, and growers are hoping for a large harvest, as the weakening Rand continues to make South Africa a popular target for buyers from Europe and North America. European market reports are varied, as ample supply exists in Spain and Italy, while the demand is currently greater than supply in France.

It appears that the bulk market has found a pricing floor in many markets, as prices are now holding, and in some cases starting to strengthen. Actual crop sizes in the Southern Hemisphere will certainly help solidify pricing in the short term, but the view for the long term continues to be a balanced market.

Read the report

California Grape Crush Report - February 2014
11 February, 2014

With a deeper look into the grape crush report, certain themes emerge that are in line with what we’re seeing in the bulk wine and grape market as well as what we’re reading and hearing about in case good sales. Certain varietals stand out as being longer than others, with both Muscat and Chardonnay posting strong numbers again in 2013.  Muscat Alexander jumps off of the page, with year over year volume growth of 60%. The additional California Muscat production could prove to be problematic, as its growth coincides with already existing international Moscato inventories and an overall softening of Moscato demand at the retail level.

Analysis on pricing reveals that it was almost uniformly down in the Central Valley (see pricing for Districts #11 - #14, and #17), while pricing was uniformly up in all Coastal appellations (see districts #1- #8).  This parallels what has been going on in each category, as lower cost wines from the Central Valley have been struggling due to higher cost of goods coming off the short 2010 and 2011 harvests.

In the end, the quality of the 2013 vintage should be pleasing to both winemaker and consumer and the quantity in the Central Valley should help in the short term to keep imports for certain varietals at bay.

What the future holds regarding the expectations for the 2014 crop will certainly make for a dynamic market after coming off two back to back record harvests.

Read the full report

Global Market Update January 2014 with 2014 projections
13 January, 2014

As 2013 comes to a close, most will remember the year of large crops across the globe and the market that began to shift back to the favor of the buyer. The Southern Hemisphere produced record crops in several markets, and with the exception of France, growers in the Northern Hemisphere experienced bountiful harvests as well. Buyers returned to the market in full force, taking advantage of pricing that had not been seen in recent quarters. Despite reports of potential global wine shortages, the market ends the year 2013 in a balanced to long position.

Demand continues to be strong for wine in many markets, and wineries were able to weather the storm of higher bulk pricing in 2011 and 2012. Margins were squeezed, and many struggled with price increases. Hopes are that growth will continue with ample supply to meet future demand. 

The team at the Ciatti Company thanks you for your support during the 2013 year, and we wish everyone a successful 2014.

Read the full report

Selling or buing bulk wine or grapes? Call us 415-458-5150

10 December, 2013

The bulk wine market continues moving at a moderate pace, as we head towards the end of the year.

Activity has been strong in France, as buyers have come out of the starting gate at a brisk pace. The

2013 vintage is proving to be larger than the historically low 2012 crop, and buyers are competing for

varietals across the board. With regards to pricing, France appears to be the one market that is

currently experiencing pricing moving in an upward direction. California buyers are picking their

contract lots, and export activity has increased, as prices have become more attractive for buyers in

Europe and Asia.

Producers in the Southern Hemisphere are busy preparing for the 2014 vintage, and projections are for

good crops in most markets. The business climate in Argentina remains difficult, and pricing in the bulk

market is beginning to reflect projections for a difficult time ahead. Frost damage in Australia has been a

concern, but most continue to believe that the crop will be of good size.

The market appears to have stabilized, but the full effect of the large crops in Spain and California are yet

to be felt. Predictions vary as to the direction of pricing, but most feel that any downward pricing

movement will be gradual and limited.

For the full report go to our webiste





California Market Report - November 2013
22 November, 2013

Long term demand continues to support the overall market. Weakness remains in some areas of the Bulk Market. Questions regarding potential effects of the 2013 crop size, cleanliness of planting material, and consumer demand are still being answered.


For the full Ciatti report CLICK HERE.

November Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
15 November, 2013

It appears that the biggest news for the wine market this past month was generated by a report concluding that the world is heading into a wine shortage. There certainly were no shortages of opinions on the subject, and the great debate rages forward. Most suppliers in the bulk market are not feeling any sense of a great shortage on the horizon, as most supply markets continue to trend towards a long position. Expectations are for reports to reveal a very healthy sized crop in the northern hemisphere, and Spain leads the way with an estimated record crush. California estimates continue to be for a very strong harvest year. France , while showing a step forward from last year, will essentially have an average to below average year.


For the full Ciatti Company - Global Market Update, CLICK HERE

Upcoming Speaking Engagements
08 November, 2013

Johnny Leonardo, Broker at Ciatti Global Wine & Grape Brokers will be participating as a speaker during the State of the Grape Industry Semiinar at the Tree & Vine Expo, Tuesday November 12th, 2013 at the Stanislaus County Fairgrounds in Turlock, CA. for details copy and paste this link to your browser


October Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
11 October, 2013

The bulk market continues to be very active in October. September marked a turn in market activity, as buyers jumped on opportunities in several regions. With prices retreating to levels that many would not have foreseen only a short time ago, the volume of bulk sales increased dramatically during the end of the second quarter.

After producers in the Southern Hemisphere turned out a very productive harvest, we now have reports that European and US producers will follow with a bountiful 2013 crush. California processors are filling tanks, and are looking forward to having product to offer in the coming selling season. French buyers anxiously await the new harvest white wines, as inventories from the previous year have proven very difficult to find. Questions remain as to how big the crops will be in the main three European regions, but all agree that it will be bigger than last year.

The frost in Chile has made headlines over the past several weeks. While we are certain that damage was most certainly done to many fruit crops, including grapes, the actual damage to the overall grape crop remains to be seen. Certain varieties will certainly see a large decrease in volume, while others may have escaped without major damage.

For the full Ciatti Company - Global Market Update, CLICK HERE

September Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
09 September, 2013

As the calendar flips to September, activity is high in the bulk market. Falling prices in the Southern Hemisphere have caused many fence-sitting buyers to make commitments. Chilean suppliers are quickly closing contracts, as bulk pricing looks unstable and inventory looks to be headed to a long position. Argentine producers are still fighting against a difficult economy, as inflation continues to cause a series of problems in the wine business. Australian and South African markets remain active. Reports of favorable growing conditions in Australia are causing concern over a potential future oversupply.

In the North, California crop estimates continue to be strong, as many believe that the harvest will approach the record number of 2012, but not quite equal it. Overall, the bulk market has plenty of supply across all regions. Some varietals still command strong prices, while others seem to be headed for close out type pricing. Buyers are taking advantage of the many opportunities now in the market and all sides hope that the result of reduced bulk pricing will mean greater sales at the retail level.

For the full Ciatti Company - Global Market Update, CLICK HERE

Ciatti Company is looking for a Customer Account Representative!
23 August, 2013

The Ciatti Company, a leading Global Wine and Grapes Brokerage with offices in 8 countries seeks a Customer Account Representative for headquarters in San Rafael, CA.

Job Description Summary: To create a partnership with brokers in order to maximize effectiveness and efficiency through enhanced communications and better information management. The objective of this role is to help brokers and the Ciatti Company provide premier customer service to our internal and external customers. Therefore, providing the value to our clients which keeps us relevant in the marketplace and ultimately enhancing our ability to close deals.

Minimum Requirements:

Bachelor's degree (B. A.) from four-year college or university and minimum five years related experience and/or training; or equivalent combination of education and experience.
Must possess strong work ethic and a positive attitude
Self starter with a high sense of urgency and ability to work with minimal supervision
Ability to manage multiple/competing tasks and to exercise independent judgment while seeking supervision where appropriate
Excellent verbal and written communication skills and able to communicate effectively with foreign offices
Ability to calculate figures and amounts such as discounts, commissions, percentages, and volume
Ability to apply concepts of basic algebra and geometry
Ability to solve practical problems and deal with a variety of concrete variables in situations where only limited standardization exists
Ability to interpret a variety of instructions furnished in written, oral, diagram, or schedule form.
Ability to define problems, collect data, establish facts, and draw valid conclusions.
Proficient with MS Office Suite (Outlook, Word, Excel, Access and PowerPoint)
Keyboard efficiently - Type 40 WPM.
Software applications - Must possess the ability to quickly learn new software applications.
Must be able to lift 40lbs (a case of wine)
Must have a valid California Driver’s License with clean driving record required
Ability to work in a team environment
Excellent organizational skills with great attention to detail
Ability to work overtime and flexible hours as needed
Salary Information: 

Contact Information:

August Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
09 August, 2013

August marks the beginning of harvest in the Northern Hemisphere, and in California the crush is well underway. Forecasts continue to call for a large crop, and questions remain about processing capacity meeting the total demand from California growers. European growers all expect to outperform the 2012 harvest, but weather conditions in France have been the cause of some concern. Coupled with the largest Southern Hemisphere crop in many years, and with strong expectations in the North, the total outcome of the 2013 harvest should alleviate any fears of supply shortages.

Activity has picked up in the bulk market, with many international buyers out in force. Relatively attractive bulk pricing in most markets has pushed buyers into the market. Very good buying opportunities remain in several markets, as New World suppliers are now working hard to retain the volume gains in recent years.

Wine sales in the United States remain strong. However, bulk wine imports have dropped from the highs of 2012. The previous year’s numbers were a reaction to a very small 2011 California crop, and the shipments in 2013 are more reflective of normalized market conditions. Bottled imports remain strong, and increases are expected as the US dollar gains strength relative to the currencies of many wine-producing nations.

For the full Ciatti Company - Global Market Update, CLICK HERE

July Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
09 July, 2013

July in the Northern Hemisphere signals the time for winemakers to prepare for another harvest. Despite a recent heat wave, it appears that California will see another large crop. After a record 2012 crop, the producers in California now wonder if they will have enough storage capacity to handle all of the incoming fruit. Europeans are expecting to bounce back from the disappointing volume results in the 2012 harvest year, but weather conditions continue to make it difficult to predict the size of the crop.

The bulk market has seen a shift over the past several months, and buyers continue to see pricing move in their direction. Opportunities seem to be available in most producing markets, and buying activity has increased over the last few weeks. Despite recent reports of global under production, the bulk market appears to have plenty of product available to fill the needs of all brand owners. The market continues to be in balance, with some varietals heading towards a slightly long position. Overall, most markets seem healthy and most buyers and producers speak of the near future with optimism.

For the full Ciatti Company - Global Market Update, CLICK HERE

June Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
07 June, 2013

After many months of very strong pro-seller conditions in the bulk market, signs are now pointing towards a time when buyers regain some control. With strong harvests being reported across the board in the Southern Hemisphere, and a record sized 2012 crop in California, the bulk market is now experiencing a softening of prices in most markets. All countries are now reporting either stable or decreasing prices across all varietals, with the exception of dry white wine in selected markets.

The world economy continues to be a concern, especially in Europe, and Government policies in Argentina have severely impacted the local wine industry. Given the headwinds of the economy and more abundance in supply, the market picture seems somewhat less positive than it did only a few months ago.

There are more opportunities for buyers today than we have seen over the past couple of years. In addition, many feel that with a lower cost supply structure, overall demand will increase in the near future.


For the full Ciatti Company - Global Market Update, CLICK HERE

May Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
10 May, 2013

The month of May brings spring in the Northern Hemisphere and high hopes for the 2013 vintage. May also brings the results of the Southern Hemisphere harvest. The April 2013 World Report predicted strong numbers, and was correct indeed. All major supply countries had harvests that were nearly equal to, or greater than that of last year. Quality is looking good, even excellent, all around the world.

Spring in California has come early this year, with some flowering already taking place. One grower commented that things are as early as 2004, which was well ahead of the average. There still remains a long time until the 2013 harvest harvest, but thus far things are looking good. Europe is finally emerging from the coldest winter in fifty years, and hopes remain high for a good harvest.

For the full Ciatti Company - Global Market Update, CLICK HERE


April Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
16 April, 2013

April marks the end of harvest for much of the Southern Hemisphere, and all predictions call for strong numbers across the board. All major supply countries are expecting harvests that are nearly equal to, or greater than that of last year. Argentina should see the largest increase in production, as the 2012 vintage year was much lower than the average. Chile looks to increase on its record 2012 crop, with Australia and South Africa looking to match results of previous years.

The annual ProWein event was held in Germany in March, and buyers and sellers of bulk wine were active. The trade show was well attended, and most of the exhibitors seemed happy with the results. Most agree that despite low 2012 harvest numbers from Europe, pricing on the bulk market continues to soften, giving buyers relief from the historic highs that were experienced over the past several quarters. While generic wines are short of supply, most varietals are balanced, with some trending towards a long position.

Thank you to everyone that visited the Ciatti stand at ProWein. We look forward to seeing many of you next month in London.

For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.


March Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
11 March, 2013

The 2013 harvest has begun in the southern hemisphere, and hopes remain high in most markets. South Africa is reporting strong numbers in most regions. However, some areas have seen disease-causing weather events. Overall, the crop should be above average and of good quality. Argentina is looking better than last year, with expectations for a much larger crop than last years disappointing result. Chilean forecasts are mixed, with weather problems causing for some uncertainty. The Australian harvest is in full swing, and again, no major decreases in volume are expected.

The effects of the large California crop are setting in, as new opportunities are now being presented in the bulk wine market. Prices in some areas are decreasing slightly, and most varietals are now available in the spot market. The grape juice concentrate market remains active, as buyers continue to look across the globe for supply.

The market looks to be in balance for most varieties, as both buyers and sellers seem to be finding enough opportunity to keep the market moving quickly. The ProWein show in Germany will be underway in a matter of weeks, and expectations are for a lot of activity.


For the Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.


California Market Report - February 2013 Volume 2 Issue 2
22 February, 2013


Market Snapshot

Crush Report Overview 

What surprised us was not that this was the biggest grape crop in California history, but rather that there was a 20% increase in average grape price. How wineries are going to digest these big volumes at higher prices remains to be seen. There could also be some pullback in the valley market if bulk imports continue to increase at last year’s rate which was the equivalent of forty million cases.

Crush Report Highlights:

-The state 2012 Pinot Noir crop size reached its highest yet of 247,000 tons up 45% overall from 2011. Monterey and Sonoma county Pinot Noir crops were up over 85% vs. last year. We experienced yields per ton on Pinot Noir in many areas that were not thought possible.

-The 2012 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon crop was both the biggest in history and saw a historic high in pricing.

-The Sonoma County Chardonnay crop was up 54%.

-Zinfandel saw the largest price increase of core varieties, up 25%.

California Wine & Grapes by Region

North Coast


In 2012 we saw significantly above average crops in both Napa and Sonoma centered on Pinot Noir (up 85% in Sonoma), Chardonnay (up over 50% in both Napa and Sonoma), and Merlot (up over 45% in both Napa and Sonoma). We expect that this crop size will balance the market for grapes as we continue on in 2013. Other parts of the North Coast we're not as heavy such as Mendocino and Lake County which is somewhat the opposite of the 2011 harvest. Grape prices should remain stable because we have seen a good level of early interest. Also, there were many long term grape contracts entered into last year, so the amount grapes available for purchase vs last year will be reduced. As always, concerns around crop size, frost, rain, and other issues that could affect the 2013 crop will continue to be topics of observation as we move towards summertime.


The large 2012 vintage North Coast grape harvest has brought a "return to normalcy" in North Coast bulk wine pricing after the run up in pricing in calendar years 2011 and 2012. Because of that run up in the previous two years, we don’t see a large carry over inventory of previous vintage bulk wines which will help maintain a floor for North Coast bulk wine prices. The one exception to that lack of carry over inventory is 2011 Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon of which we see a large volume on the bulk market. Coupled with the biggest Napa Cab crop in history (just surpassing 2005 at 70,935 tons) that is of very good quality, these 2011 Napa Cab bulk wines could prove challenging to move at the previously expected prices.




With the 2012 harvest, the Central Coast region strikes a balanced position in wine grape supply. The abundant 2012 crop follows a drastically short 2011 harvest which was down more than 25% when compared to 2009 and 2010. The

2012 harvest has relieved some short term problems for California wineries that had needs for Paso Robles Cabernet Sauvignon, or Monterey Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The intense buying activity that started a full year prior to the 2012 harvest gives the impression that this trend will continue in 2013. The biggest take away from the Grape Crush Report was the increase in grape pricing.

Cabernet and Merlot prices were up 15% overall, and Chardonnay prices were up 7% on the Central Coast. This price increase was typical of what we saw throughout the rest of the state.


The wine quality from 2012 harvest is excellent, after favorable harvest weather allowed for fully mature fruit. Bulk wine inventories for the Central Coast are back to normal levels after ‘empty winery cellars’ were once again filled to capacity.  Buying activity is strong for the major varieties of Chardonnay, Cabernet and Pinot Noir. Bulk pricing seems to be returning to normal levels after last year’s highs. Within the last six months, Central Coast bulk pricing has fallen by approximately $2/gallon and seems stable. The total Central Coast districts crushed an additional 158,000 tons which would equate to 27 million more gallons of wine when compared to last year.

Going forward in 2013, we expect to see bulk wine pricing more in line with where average 2012 grape prices were -

with the one potential exception being 2012 Sonoma County Pinot Noir, as it was such a large crop (up 85% over 2011 tonnage). We have already seen that bulk wine price fall below the equivalent of average 2012 grape pricing.

Cabernet Sauvignon bulk wine that is competitively priced will still be in high demand in 2013, as evidenced by the scarcity of 2011 product from Sonoma, Mendocino, or Lake County.



As the state’s total winegrape crush increased an impressive 20% from 2011, the Interior (districts 9, 11, 12, 13, 14, 17) saw less of an increase jumping up 13%. The Southern Interior had single digit gains of only 4%. The Northern Interior was up 32% but this was after a 2011 harvest which was down significantly. Lodi had tremendous growth in Zinfandel (up 53%), Chardonnay (up 39%), and Cabernet (up 36%). As a result of a two year buying frenzy which brought a wave of multi-year contract signings, the valley currently has the largest quantity of grapes under contract in more than a decade. Availability is slim and a bit unknown as renegotiations on expiring contracts have been taking place. Pricing is solid but appears slightly disconnected between buyers and sellers leaving both sides evaluating their needs.


With the increase in production, wineries have recovered from the bulk shortages of 2011 and now have inventory available. The Valley crushed 84,000 more tons of Chardonnay, 80,000 more tons of Zinfandel, and 53,000 more tons of Cabernet then in 2011, an increase equivalent to 77,000,000 gallons of wine. As a result, overall pricing has softened, decreasing on average of 20%. Carry-over of older vintages is virtually non-existent with wineries focusing on current vintage. Quality appears very good although there is some variation due to transitioning of Zinfandel vineyards. With increased production, wineries may now be able to relieve some the pressure of imported bulk wine and may also seek export opportunities which has been limited over the last two years due to lack supply.


11 February, 2013

(San Rafael, Calif.) – February 8, 2013 - The Preliminary California Grape Crush Report released today shows the 2012 Winegrape crop reached an all-time high of 4.014 M Tons, which was surprising given the limited amount of new planting in the state.  This production was needed given the shorter crops from the previous two years and the growing consumer demand for case goods.  This will provide supply to wineries and bring the overall market back into balance as we enter 2013.

The state 2012 Pinot Noir crop size reached it’s highest yet of 247,000 tons up 45% overall from 2011.  Monterey and Sonoma county Pinot Noir crops were up over 85% vs last year. We experienced yields per ton on Pinot Noir in many areas that were not thought possible.

Quality for 2012 should be outstanding, with winemakers with many years of experience saying this is the best quality year they have ever seen.

This large California crop was driven by historically high yields in the Central Coast, Napa, Sonoma, and Lodi.  The Central Valley was up but just slightly over last year. 

The Cabernet crop in California was the largest since the historical 2005 crop.  Demand continues to remain strong and we will see more new planting over the next few years.  The 495,622 tons harvested was needed for growing case good sales.

Bulk wine imports, which grew to approx. 40 M equivalent cases in 2012, will continue to effect the demand for California grapes in the future.  This large increase in imports has been partly due to the recent grape price increases.

The grape and wine market, with the healthy 2012 crop, have moved into a balanced position and wineries and growers should be able to see mutual profitability.  The larger crop and inventories should push the bulk wine market pricing down from the highs of last year, but may have less of an effect on grape pricing.  However much of these pricing changes will depend on case sales growth over the next year.

Consumers should see more availability of California wine in the market place and the larger crops of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay state wide should help to keep prices stable.

2012 Grape Pricing increased by upwards of 20% in many areas of the state.  Multiple buyers where caught needing supply and drove the rise in pricing in these areas.  Wineries are now trying to decide if they will pass these costs of goods increases to the consumer or adjust their margins. 


Please call Glenn Proctor or John White at the Ciatti Company 415-458-5150 for further discussion, and insight.

The Ciatti Company is the world’s largest and most comprehensive bulk wine and grape brokerage.  Aside from its home base in San Rafael, California, seven offices around the world provide clients the kind of information and intelligence that today’s competitive global wine industry demands.

The company, founded in 1972, has deep roots in the wine industry, both in California and the countries in which the company operates.  The current partnership includes industry professionals with over 135 years of collective experience including: John Ciatti, Greg Livengood, Glenn Proctor, John White, Chris Welch and Steve Dorfman.



415 458 5150

Lora Parnell

Glenn Proctor Broker/Partner 

John White Broker/Partner 


For the full California Report, Click Here.

January Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
02 January, 2013


All of us here at Ciatti would like to welcome you to what we hope will be a prosperous year for all. For the first month of the new year, we thought we would take a look back on the year that was, and do some prognostication about what might be in store for 2013. Therefore, in the pages that are to follow, we have changed a few things for this month only. Starting in February, however, we will resume the regular monthly sections.

For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.

December Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
18 December, 2012

As 2012 comes to a close, the recent wine news has been dominated by reports of crop shortages in Europe. As expected, we have seen a lot of activity in the bulk market, with particular interest in South Africa and Chile. Generic wines, both white and red, have been the targets of European buyers, as they look to supplement their recently depleted stocks. Much of the industry talk has been about the global wine shortage and how this shortage will affect the bulk wine market. While we agree that global wine production will be down in 2012, our view is that dramatic price increases likely will be confined to European markets. Supply excess or shortage is now varietal dependent, with some varietals heading into short-term over supply.

California wineries continue to report that the harvest was of good quality and that volume was up in most areas. Chilean suppliers have seen much of the their generic inventory move to Europe, and new Cabernet Sauvignon offers are looking attractive to buyers across the globe. Argentina awaits the 2013 harvest, hoping to bounce back from a disappointing year regarding harvest volume. South Africa has continued to be a strong source of supply for North Americans and Europeans alike, and contracts for 2013 wines have been abundant.

Despite the supply problems now facing Europe, the bulk market continues to offer many options for those needing wine supply. We now look forward to the 2013 Southern Hemisphere harvest, and indicators are pointing towards solid results across the board.


For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.


November Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
16 November, 2012

The harvests in the Northern Hemisphere have come to a close, and growers across Europe continue to report very weak volume results. France and Italy were hit especially hard, and the shorter crop has caused for increased pricing. In North America, the California crop looks to be large, and we believe it will be the largest wine grape crop in California history. Due to this larger than normal harvest, Californian pricing is expected to moderate from the historic highs of the past twelve months.

In the Southern Hemisphere, sales continue to be brisk in South Africa , as buyers have jumped into the generic white and red varietal markets. The activity from buyers has been strong in both Europe and North America . The Chilean market remains active as well, and while the varietal market has seen increased activity, the generic inventory was heavily depleted by Spanish demand. Prices remain strong in Australia for red wine, while buying opportunity exists for Chardonnay and other white wine.

Moscato demand in the United States remains strong; however, we are hearing reports that demand is beginning to level off. It remains to be seen how the new California plantings will affect the overall Muscat market, but expectations for the future are for a general price decrease in Muscat bulk wine.


For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.


October Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
17 October, 2012

As the 2012 harvest season continues in the Northern Hemisphere, expectations remain very low for the European crop results. All estimates for Italy, France and Spain are for a significant decrease in production, when compared to the 2011 harvest. It is believed that we will see a net decrease of one and a half million metric tonnes from the big three in Europe. The bulk wine market has already begun to feel the effects.

Spanish buyers are moving quickly through Chile and generic wines are quickly disappearing. Chile experienced a historically large crop in 2012, and it looks as though the fears of potential oversupply have now fallen away, replaced by the excitement of a very active market. The varietal market has yet to move from a price perspective, but the bottom end of the market has certainly moved in an upward direction.

The California harvest is well underway. Growers and buyers alike are expecting a large harvest of high quality. The current bulk inventory of California wine remains very low. Therefore, a large harvest would provide welcome relief for California bulk buyers.

For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.


September Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
13 September, 2012

European economic concerns have dominated the headlines over the past several months, and now concerns over European harvest sizes are the big news in the bulk market. Industry experts in Italy, France and Spain are all calling for 2012 crops to be smaller than those of the 2011 harvest. Given the relatively balanced market that we have today, significant crop reductions in these three regions could send the market back into a short position. The California crop looks to be much stronger than last year, and perhaps this larger harvest will, in part, balance some of the losses now expected in Europe.

For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.


California Market Report - August 2012
21 August, 2012

The 2012 wine grape crush is upon us with most larger Central Valley wineries already crushing fruit and the balance gearing up to start next week.  The crop appears to be good-sized but not enormous.  Overall, market activity for both bulk wine and grapes has slowed as wineries prepare for harvest.  With so many bulk wine and grape commitments made earlier in the year, buyers appear to be digesting their earlier buying activity and are proceeding more cautiously until harvest unfolds a bit further.

Wine Market Overview

Earlier this year when the industry saw the bulk wine market drastically heat up after the 2011 harvest, one wondered what this meant to the long term structural fundamentals of the wine business and is this a new reality going forward?  The (multi?) million dollar question at that time was (and is): for those that were forced to pay a higher cost of goods on the bulk wine market, were they going to be able to see that higher return at the retail level?  And if not, what does that mean to maintaining the margins at which they were accustomed to working?  As the old saying goes, water finds it’s own level, and with what looks to be an average to above average sized crop on the horizon for 2012, we are  trending back towards bulk wine pricing that probably makes more sense commensurate to what the consumer is seeing on the shelf.  At the least, we are not trending upward in pricing as we were in the first quarter of 2012.

Please contact the us if you would like to subscribe to our bi-monthly California Market Report.






August Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
13 August, 2012

For the majority of the Northern Hemisphere, August marks the beginning of the harvest season. Reports are mixed for the upcoming crop, when compared to that of 2011. California continues to look strong, as both grape pricing and volume indications remain high for the 2012 crop. Italy is looking to rebound from a very small 2011 harvest. France seems to be down slightly from the larger than average crop last year. After experiencing challenging spring weather conditions, Spain is predicting double-digit decline in production for the upcoming harvest.

Reports are in from the Southern Hemisphere and Chile is leading the way with record highs for the 2012 harvest. The crop was the largest crop in Chile to date, showing a 20% increase in production over last year. Prices have held for wines of good quality, but opportunity for buyers certainly still exists. The Australian wine industry has also released official numbers for 2012 and the crop is up slightly over that of last year.

The bulk market remains active, with some slowing during the summer months in the Northern Hemisphere. Buyers are being more selective, now that their options have increased over the previous couple of months. Some are predicting a market correction in the near future, but as sales continue to be strong, it remains to be seen how far the market will pull back from its recent highs.


For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.

For the full Ciatti Company – Pricing Grid, click here.

California Grape Report - June 2012
07 August, 2012

Below, please find an example of the information that was included in our Inaugural Edition of a California Grape Report to be published bi-monthly.  The next issue, August 2012, is in the works now and will also include a California Wine Market Report.  If you are interested in subscribing to this report please send an email to with "subscribe to California wine & grape report" in the subject.

Grape Market Overview

As we all now know the market started to drastically change in late 2011 before harvest.  It has continued to accelerate and we are now in one of the most active and dynamic markets we have seen in the last 10 years.  Planting contracts are being offered in many  areas of the state and wineries have begun to secure and purchase vineyards which we have not seen for a few years. How far and fast this goes is a hard question to answer.  But it appears for the near term and the 2012 harvest things will continue to be tight – even with the above average crop that many in the state are beginning to predict.  Longer term we expect the market to come back  into balance.  We continue to see wineries look to overseas opportunities to supplement their supply needs.

2012 Crop

Estimating crop is always a difficult and an inaccurate exercise.  The initial thoughts on this years crop is that it will be bigger than last year especially in the Coastal areas and in the Northern  Interior.  The weather to date has also been cooperative with many areas 3 weeks ahead to date of where we stood last year.  But much of the reason for the larger expected crop is the market itself.  Buyers need the supply and growers are leaving on extra buds to meet those desires.  In line with this – we are hearing reports to date that the Cabernet Sauvignon crop looks fairly healthy throughout the state.

We still need to get through set and sizing before we can really know what to expect this harvest.


June Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
20 June, 2012

During the past two years of producing this update, we have seen the global economic world continue to remain in a state of flux. Nimble producers that have kept a flexible sourcing model in this evolving world continue to prosper.

Currently, European economic concerns dominate the headlines; opportunities have now presented themselves in the bulk wine markets. As investors move away from the euro, and towards the relative safety of the dollar, the resulting gain in dollar strength has made several import markets more appealing. Wine from South Africa has attracted the most attention as the SA rand dropped significantly in value against the rebounding dollar. Chardonnay and dry white wine seem to be attracting the most interest from buyers today. The Australian dollar and Chilean peso have also seen relative weakening against the dollar, and wines from those countries are beginning to tempt buyers as well.

The Southern Hemisphere harvests are all winding down, and it appears that we have mixed results. South Africa and Chile look to be above average, Australia is reporting an average harvest, and Argentina and New Zealand have come up short. Producers are starting to make estimates in the Northern Hemisphere, and it is believed that California is looking at a larger than average 2012 crop. Recent storms in France have impacted several areas with varying degrees of crop damage and the extent of the damage is yet to be determined but could affect future crops. Germany and Spain have been experiencing mild temperatures and minimal rainfall. This has allowed for good bud break and fruit set, which should result in an average crop for both countries. While uncertainty remains regarding supply availability, activity remains strong, and prices are holding in most markets.

A big plus for all of us in the global wine industry is that demand for wines around the world remains relatively strong. Consumer thirst for wines from well-known producers in both new brands, in addition to tried and true labels, continues to grow. Paying close attention to all economic, supply and demand factors, as well as remaining agile, seems to be the current key to success.

For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.

For the full Ciatti Company – Pricing Grid, click here.

July Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
20 June, 2012

July marks the middle of summer in the Northern Hemisphere, and expectations are for healthy crops across all of the major producing regions. After a disappointing 2011 crop, especially in California and Italy, a larger crop would be welcome relief to many buyers in the bulk market. Prices moved higher at a rapid pace in California over the past twelve months. It appears that a plateau has been reached, and some pricing softness exists for certain varieties in the commercial growing areas. Italy looks to rebound from last year’s small crop, which should help take some of the pressure off of the recently overheated market in Spain. French producers in the Languedoc saw a larger than usual crop in 2011, and are still looking to move some white inventory. The economy in Europe continues to be a cause for alarm in the bulk market, as buyers continue to send messages of concern about pricing and corresponding consumption levels.

For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.

For the full Ciatti Company – Pricing Grid, click here.

May Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
23 May, 2012

The harvests in the Southern Hemisphere are winding down, and the results look to be mixed. Chile is leading the way with what looks to be a strong harvest from a volume perspective and Australia and South Africa also look to have come through with strong results. The expectations are not as high in Argentina and New Zealand, as the growers are seeing lower than average intake.

The bulk markets continue to move at a brisk pace, however the first month of the second quarter showed slightly less activity than the very fast paced first three months of the year. Prices continue to show strength, but it appears that we are experiencing a plateau in many markets and buyers are now pushing back on some of the recent price increases.

The U.S. market has been a strong source of demand for many wine companies throughout the world, but recent reports indicate that there is growing resistance to price increases in the retail market. While supply relief may be some time away, nursery sales indicate that California growers are working to catch up with demand.

The London Wine Trade Fair is only weeks away, Ciatti will once again have a stand, and we will be bringing new samples from the 2012 Southern Hemisphere harvest. Please come by and see the quality of the new wines.

For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.

For the full Ciatti Company – Pricing Grid, click here.

April Grape and Bulk Wine World Report
04 April, 2012

April is here, and as spring in the Northern Hemisphere begins, we realize that we have already experienced a very active 2012 market. First quarter activity hit a three month high in March as the

Prowein show in Germany proved to be as eventful as expected. Buyers and sellers did not hold much back in the first months of 2012, with early commitments being made in markets across the globe. With demand numbers remaining high in the United States, many feel that strong sales will continue into the foreseeable future.

The Southern Hemisphere harvests continue, and the supply picture is slowly coming into focus. It appears that Chile and South Africa will both have good to slightly larger than average crops, and that most regions of Australia have escaped a difficult summer weather season. Argentina and New Zealand both look to be down on volume this year, but quality reports are good across the board.

The producers in the Northern Hemisphere are moving through their 2011 stock, with some interesting opportunities now presenting themselves, especially in the French market. Wine in most northern countries remains available, but pricing seems to be causing slightly lower levels of activity. California continues to be very tight on supply, and the 2012 harvest can’t come soon enough for most players in that market.

For the full Ciatti Company Global Market Update, click here.

For the full Ciatti Company Pricing Gridclick here.


Bulk Wine Opportunities
04 April, 2012

The harvests in the Southern Hemisphere are moving into full swing. Chile, South Africa and Australia all look to be having normal sized harvests, while growers in Argentina now expect numbers to be down significantly from last year. It is still early in the harvest season, but buyers have been actively searching for 2012 offers, and many will commit early.

For the full Ciatti Company – Global Market Update, click here.

For the full Ciatti Company – Pricing Grid, click here.



California Grape Crush Report – Videos
06 March, 2012


Ciatti Company shares observations about the preliminary California Grape Crush Report specific to the North Coast, Central Coast, and Central Valley. See more here.

2011 WINEGRAPE HARVEST DOWN – Get the Ciatti Company perspective
13 February, 2012

The Preliminary California Grape Crush Report released today shows the total crop of winegrapes harvested in 2011 was 3.34 million tons, down 7% from 2010. Total tons of all grapes crush was 3.87, down 5% from 2010.

“The California Bulk Wine and Grape Market has tightened extremely quickly over the last 6-12 months. Driven by the fact that 2011 harvest was down 7%, the second below average crop in succession, and healthy sales of wines with consumer friendly pricing and taste.”

- Glenn Proctor, Broker/Partner, Ciatti Company

"Based on the lower than normal California Winegrape harvest in 2011, international supply will be looked at with great interest as their harvests progress. February marks the beginning of the Southern Hemisphere¹s harvest. This supply could provide options to the short California harvest.”

- Steve Dorfman, Broker/Partner, Ciatti Company

“Thompson seedless grapes crushed in 2011 were at historically high pricing and Grape Juice concentrate domestically has continued to remain at very high price levels. While there are still small quantities of concentrate available in the states, the pricing remains very firm. “

- Greg Magill, Broker, Ciatti Company

“Overall production in the Northern Interior was down compared to last year which was one of the lightest crops in 3 years. The Clarksburg/Delta was up slightly while the Lodi region was down overall almost 6% giving that region its second light year in a row with some varieties such as Zinfandel down a staggering 25%. The Southern Interior showed an overall decrease from 2010. Demand for grapes in all Interior regions remains strong with spot market grape prices reaching their highest price in over 10 years. Planting activity is also the strongest it's been in a decade despite the lack of supply of planting material and the competition to plant other crops. No matter the size of the overall crop in the Southern and Northern Interior, it wasn't going to be enough to fuel the current demand.”

- Johnny Leonardo, Broker, Ciatti Company

"The greater Central Coast saw a surge of buying activity late in the 2011 harvest. This activity has not been seen in the Central Coast since the 2008 vintage. With the overall crop down 26% in the Central Coast buyers are making a concentrated effort to purchase fruit early. Cabernet Sauvignon and Pinot Noir look to be the hottest grapes on the market with Chardonnay a close second.”

- Todd Azevedo, Broker, Ciatti Company

“The North Coast grape harvest (Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, and Lake Counties) turned out to be one of the smallest harvests since 2008 and 2004. Crop levels were down by 13% overall and harvest dates were typically 2 to 4 weeks delayed. This was a culmination of unseasonable weather: rains during May-June bloom season, cool summer temperatures, and unforgiving early October rains. The smaller crop size and delayed ripening made for a challenging year for both growers and wineries and calls for brix enhancing concentrate and alcohol were common during the crush season. Brix and alcohol levels may have been down, but the longer ripening season gave resulting wines full flavor and colors. Spot market grape pricing and bulk wine pricing continues to be volatile as buyers continue to secure inventory. “

- John White, Broker/Partner, Ciatti Company

“Regardless of these numbers presented today; the real story is the demand that we see in today’s grape and bulk (wine) markets. We need large production and or more vines planted to sustain our current growth levels.”

- John Ciatti, Broker/Partner, Ciatti Company

Please call Glenn Proctor or John Ciatti at the Ciatti Company 415-458-5150 for further discussion, and insight.

The Ciatti Company is the world’s largest and most comprehensive bulk wine and grape brokerage. Aside from its home base in San Rafael, California, seven offices around the world provide clients the kind of information and intelligence that today’s competitive global wine industry demands.

The company, founded in 1972, has deep roots in the wine industry, both in California and the countries in which the company operates. The current partnership includes industry professionals with over 135 years of collective experience including: John Ciatti, Greg Livengood, Glenn Proctor, John White, Chris Welch and Steve Dorfman.

Contact: 415 458 5150
Lora Parnell
Glenn Proctor Broker/Partner
John Ciatti Broker/Partner

The Bulk Wine Shelves are Bare!
08 February, 2012

The Shelves are Bare: Many bulk suppliers have less wine in tank due to the light 2011 harvest, and as a result there are fewer bulk lots for sale compared to years past. The most apparent needs are for affordable wines and grapes to be funneled into value-priced brands. Wineries are forced to explore new supply relationships by sourcing wine and grapes from different appellations.

Sticker Shock: The other reality is the new pricing for those wines and grapes that have hit the market. Initial offerings are substantially higher than last years, causing issues with profitability and ultimately sustainability. One would expect a need for some form of price increase at the wholesale and ultimately consumer level in the near future.

Visit: for more information.

2011 Vintage Supply Falling Short of Demand
04 January, 2012

Harvest finally ended well into November with Central Coast Reds and the last of the interior-located Rubireds being crushed. North Coast wineries might have salvaged the harvest with a lot of hard work; only time and tasting will tell.

California – Buyers are looking to secure longer term contracts to protect against shortages. Most European buyers will not pay this year’s higher prices and most California suppliers believe that the market is going into a short position for the next few years. The bottom line is there are not enough grapes in the ground to cover demand.

Washington – Nothing should be bought before samples have been approved. The harvest came very late due to cold weather, and when the wine came in, storage and fermentation space were in limited supply. Botrytis,mildew, rot and low brix (<20°) were all problems throughout this year’s harvest.

Oregon - A long cool spring and a cool late summer gave way to measured temperature increases at exactly the right time prior to harvest 2011. This saved what could have been a challenging vintage for Oregon growers. The previous year’s non-bearing acres are starting to come on line and the volumes of bulk wines already available from this vintage reflect an increase in yielding acreage.

Global Market Update
19 December, 2011

The 2011 harvest nears completion. All growing regions are reporting below average yields across many varieties. Zinfandel, Sauvignon Blanc, and Cabernet Sauvignon could be at five year lows.

Presidential elections have passed with the incumbent and her party winning with 54% of the vote. This has created many uncertainties over the future of the economy due to high inflation which has caused high costs and a corresponding loss of competitiveness for exports. A devaluation in the near future is expected despite government claims against such action.
An increasing number of Australian suppliers are shipping wine in bulk rather than as a bottled product – 48% bulk vs 51% bottled, a record high. Key drivers for this shift include environmental and economic reasons, economies of scale, the high Aussie dollar and an increasing number of buyer-driven private labels. This change has also caused a negative impact on the value of wine exported from Australia. As the packaging component is no longer included in the FOB value, at a normal cost of around $15 per case or FOB value of $1.70 per litre, Australia’s current export value has softened by $340 million (based on exporting 200 million litres.) Source: WEAR Report September 2011


15 November, 2011

As the Northern Hemisphere producers finish their 2011 harvest, it appears that supply will be put under pressure.  TheCaliforniacrop is by all accounts the lowest it has been in the past three years.  Estimates range anywhere from 9% to 20% down, with the premium areas being hit the hardest. ItalyandSpainare also reporting lower than average harvests, which will likely push buyers into different supply directions. Francelooks to be the one major supply country with a bountiful harvest, and theLanguedocregion looks to be especially healthy.  As Spanish and Italian prices move upward, we expect the French product to look much more attractive to beleaguered bulk wine buyers.

It is still early to predict harvest sizes for the major producers of the Southern Hemisphere, but we are nearing the end of the frost season in some of those markets and hopes remain high for large crops in those markets.  We should have a much clearer picture of size and quality of the Southern Hemisphere crop by the end of November.

Buyers have been busy over the past month, with large volumes of bulk moving out of several markets. Chileexperienced heavy volume activity, with prices stabilizing after a short period of decline.  Activity inArgentinahas escalated as buyers search for deals on generic white wine.  Overall the bulk market remains strong, with stable pricing, and healthy competition for available inventory.

19 October, 2011

Currency exchange and wet weather conditions are the hot topics for October. With the
economic issues in Europe causing a relative weakness in the Euro, and mining
commodity prices showing signs of softening, the U.S. dollar has sprung back to life.
With the dollar realizing new strength against the Euro, Chilean Peso, Australian dollar,
and South African Rand, bulk wine import opportunities for U.S. buyers are beginning to
The harvest in California continues to be troublesome, as rain storms hit most growing
regions throughout the first two weeks of October. Reports out of the San Joaquin
Valley continue to suggest a light crop, with numerous varietals coming under intense
demand pressure. Many international buyers are attempting to secure their California
bulk wine now, as it looks likely that reasonable spot deals will be difficult to find in the
coming months. We continue to see light harvest estimates in Italy, and some weather
related disease problems in Spain, but the Languedoc crop still looks strong. Given the
expected large crop, Languedoc could see renewed interest from buyers in the coming
The Southern Hemisphere continues to offer deals for international buyers, as Chilean
both Generic and Varietal Reds are now priced at levels not seen in the past eighteen
months. Inventory is available, and we have samples moving. The pass has cleared in
the Andes, and Argentine wines are again on the move. Generic White seems to be the
current Argentine play, with quality and pricing attractive on the world market. South
Africa pushes forward with some very interesting offers, as the Rand has lost significant
value over the past few weeks.

U.S. Grape Concentrate Market Report
12 October, 2011

September 12, 2011 - The first week of crush for the GJC market (Thompson’s and naturals) is turning out an average and even a slightly above average crop. Demand is still outpacing supply due to pressure from raisin processors, juice beverage companies, and significant, sustained winery demand. Concerns still remain over the lack of sugar this late in the season: current reports indicate Brix levels between 18-19 Brix, about a week to 10 days behind the normal 20-22 Brix sugar level expected for this time of year. This is causing some concern for raisin farmers who need to cut or lay down their crops before the mid-September crop insurance deadline. There are still a lot of raisin farmers undecided about whether to go green or gamble for the $1700 per ton prices floated by the CA raisin industry. Expect to see movement one way or another very shortly.

2011 Harvest Begins Slowly
21 September, 2011

California’s 2011 Grape Harvest begins, all be it weeks later than normal. Pre-harvest estimates remain below normal for most varieties and regions. Look for total volumes to be well below both 2009 and 2010 levels. This comes at a time when another bumper crop would have been welcomed.

Both Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel vineyards around California seem to have been greatly affected by the spring weather, only exasperating already tight pricing and availabilities. Recent weather patterns have growers hoping for more berry sizing and sugar development. Mildew pressure is evident across the state and more detailed crop estimates will be available next month.

12 September, 2011

As we move into September, the bulk market remains very active, with some signs of change on the horizon. After experiencing many months of a very tight market in Chile, we are now starting to see some movement on pricing in a downward direction. As previously reported, a stronger than expected crop was realized in Chile, and we are now seeing ample volume of red wine hit the market, with pricing that looks to be at a lower level than we have seen in some time.

Bulk wine seems to be available across the Southern Hemisphere, with Australia, Argentina, and even New Zealand showing offers of several varietals. South Africa, which has been in extremely tight supply over the past two years, now seems to be moving back towards a balanced position, with many new offers in the market. After a better than expected southern hemisphere harvest, it now looks like France, particularly the Languedoc region, is going to have a very large crop and white wine prices seem to be reflecting this larger supply. Italy, Spain and the United States (California) are all predicting crops at lower levels than last year, with California showing strong price increases year over year.

Most markets are holding price on the bulk market at this time, but we expect to see some good value opportunities, based on what we are seeing in Chile, and what we expect to see out of the Languedoc. Buyers need to search for the great deals, but we are starting to see them in some markets, and we expect more to be forthcoming.

10 August, 2011

     The global bulk wine market continues to show signs of strength.  The buying activity has remained active, and prices have held firm.  Reports are in from the Southern Hemisphere, and it appears that most supply countries have had a bountiful harvest. Argentina and Chile both showed very solid crop volumes, with Argentina looking to have had a good quality year. The big surprise comes from Chile, where a much larger than expected crop was harvested.  While prices have not fallen dramatically in Chile, it does feel that there may be some downward pricing pressure building.  Australia also experienced a good sized harvest, despite the previously reported weather issues.  Pricing seems to be holding steady in Australia, and it remains to be seen if some of the weather effected bulk wine will be accepted in the international market.  New Zealand also reports a large harvest, and we expect to see ample supply of Sauvignon Blanc on the bulk market. South African growers are already looking ahead to the 2012 vintage, as a dry winter is seen as a cause for some concern.  With a weakening Rand, export opportunities, especially for white wine, are now increasing.

       As we now move toward the harvest season in the Northern Hemisphere, reports are mixed for the upcoming crop.  After two large harvests in California, we now wait to see if the heavy winter and spring rainfall and cooler summer temperatures will bring an average or small harvest in 2011.  Regardless of the size of the crop, the California bulk market remains very tight in the Central Valley, and prices are not likely to move downward anytime soon. We have had some indications of potential mildew problems in Spain, which could cause for some quantity and quality problems, but it is still early to make a call for this market.  France is looking to have a larger than normal harvest, and Italy is predicted to be of average size. 
       The demand side of the market continues to face pressure from the global economy.  The news in Europe and the United States looks grim, as financial markets have been pounded, and fears of a double dip recession arise in the United States.  As costs have increased, margins squeezed, and governments continue to seek increased revenue from alcohol products, expect greater pressure to increase shelf prices.   The consumer has been resilient, but some fear that we may be reaching the tipping point.

03 August, 2011

As Andy Grove, the founder of Intel said, "Leaders have to act more quickly today. The pressure comes much faster".

The supply stream on a global basis remains under increasing pressure. Around the world we are seeing bulk wine demand continue to outstrip supply. There is higher demand for most varietals on a countryby country basis, and pricing continues to be on the rise. The upward trend in pricing may now be moderateda bit by worsening economic conditions in many countries. Historically when we were in the lower end of thesupply cycle, bulk wine prices and subsequent grape prices rose faster than the consuming public was able toabsorb price increases on the shelf. It remains to be seen how consumer demand will be effected by the current production price increases.

Additionally, as a recent Rabobank report points out "the US dollar has been the worst performing currency in the G-10 in the year to date. Despite a huge amount of policy stimulus, US growth has remaineddisappointingly slow.” Rabobank does not expect the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates before themiddle of next year, meaning it will be one of the last central banks to hike rates during the current cycle. “This prospect of record low interest rates for an extended period bodes poorly for the US dollar and is a central reason why the currency has been under pressure so far this year." The US is now the largest wine consuming nation, and 27% of the wine consumed in the U.S. is imported. Production cost increases, combined with lower buying power of the U.S. dollar, will be difficult to pass on to the consumer.

Despite these hurdles, we continue to see sales growth, and with leadership, diligence, and in some cases planting, we can work our way out of the current undersupply in the bulk market, back towards balance.

Argentina: International buyers actively seeking bulk wines & wine grape juice concentrate.
Australia: Crush figures much higher than expected, however quality consistency may be a challenge.
California: Strong buying activity for grapes and bulk wine, as well as increased sales for value-end labels and some higher-end wine programs.
Chile: Harvest has finished with projections of a light varietal crop, but a sizeable generic and table grape crop.
France: Strong interest continues for value brands and Bordeaux Grand Crus.
Germany: Some areas are still recovering from previous frost damage, those unaffected vineyards are showing a strong crop.
Italy: The Italian market continues to maintain the stability that has characterized the past few months.
South Africa: All 2011 wines are ready to be shipped, and early predictions of a light red varietal crop have materialized.
Spain: Due to strong demand, Spanish wines are now in short supply.

Spanish wines now in short supply due to strong demand
20 July, 2011

As expected and feared, June saw the first shortages of bulk wines in some Spanish wineries. Shortages are prevalent for all organic wines as well as conventional white varietals (Chardonnay, Moscatel). Some co-operative cellars have all red wines committed and are no longer quoting for new requests. Generic white stock level is still high and has shown little movement. Spanish producers and negociants are already starting to draw up 2011 pre-harvest contracts with repeat clients. Prices have slightly increased over 2010 but for the moment remain reasonable. Many wineries are waiting for harvest to begin before setting prices.

Posted in France.

Strong Buying Activity for Both Grapes and Bulk Wine
06 July, 2011

Sales data shows continued volume growth within the US market. Larger, value-end labels show strong performance along with the continued rebound of many premium and higher-end wine programs. With little or no pricing relief expected at the retail level, producers have increased pressure on margins and profitability.

Buying activity remains brisk as more wineries seek supply for the upcoming season. Recent reports indicate historic prices for Thompson Seedless, a variety now competing with raisin buyers. This reflects winery demand for all grape varietals and the lack of constant supply. Thompsons, which previously went to concentrate or distillation, are now being fermented into still wine for blending.

Activity in the bulk wine market continues in all regions. Heavy reds, along with floral whites remain in good demand. Bulk Chardonnay activity has started as buyers look for opportunity purchases given a perceived lighter upcoming vintage.

Continued Activity in Bulk Wine and Grape Markets
20 June, 2011

The California market remains active for both wine and grapes. Driven by continued optimism and sales growth, wineries are aggressively sourcing future inventory requirements. These commitments come earlier than in past years and prior to firm indications of the upcoming 2011 crop level.

All premium red wines continue to sell at strong pricing levels. Both value and luxury wine programs have continued to drive this activity. Grape sales have continued in all regions of California. Concerns and the reality of the April frost on our Central Coast have fueled additional commitments around the state.

The Current Market: Where are we now and where are we headed?
13 May, 2011

The mood among California grapegrowers took an optimistic turn at the 2011 Vineyard Economics Seminar, held May 10 at the Napa Valley Marriott in Napa, California. The event was organized by the Wine Symposium Group and co-sponsored by Vineyard & Winery Management magazine.

In the seminar's opening session, Glenn Proctor, partner at the grape brokerage firm Ciatti Co. LLC, gave a cautiously optimistic overview of the 2011 California grape market.

"We're starting to see some positive sales numbers," he noted, citing Silicon Valley Bank's "2011-2012 State of the Wine Industry Report," which forecasted 11%-15% growth in fine wine sales for 2011.

Gone are the gluts of previous years, he said, and wineries are once again looking to buy grapes. "Supply is no longer a dirty word," he said. The grape market is shifting from a buyer's market to a seller's market, and growers are now able to sell their fruit at sustainable prices. "It's a different market today."

Along with a different market, a new breed of grapegrower has emerged from the recession, Proctor said. This "New Grape Seller" has had to adapt in order to survive, and no longer relies on selling grapes as his only means of income. The new grower is a "price maker" instead of a "price taker," and is using more non-traditional methods - such as producing bulk wines and selling case goods - to sell his or her product.

 In the Central Valley, nearly all fruit has been contracted. Grape pricing has increased over 2010, with asking prices rising for remaining supply. Red varieties and muscat sales are "extremely strong," Proctor said, with longer-term contracts being offered to growers.

The Coastal region has experienced a particularly difficult market in the last two years, but it is showing signs of improvement. "Strong early buying activity has focused on reds with improved pricing," Proctor told attendees. However, chardonnay grapes are still difficult to market.

In the Napa and Sonoma regions, there has been strong early activity on Napa Valley cabernet sauvignon, with the market driven by negotiant buyers and repositioned brands. The market is still difficult for chardonnay grapes. Sonoma buying activity has lagged a bit behind that of Napa, with buyers seeking out fruit from specific appellations and only buying at "the right price."

Spot market grape pricing has shown improvement across the state. For example, per-ton prices for Napa Valley chardonnay have increased from $700-$1,300 in 2010 to $1,300-$2,000 in 2011. Central Coast pinot noir prices rose from $750-$1,300 in 2010 to $1,300-$2,200 in 2011. Napa cabernet sauvignon prices increased from $1,000-$2,800 in 2010 to $2,400-$4,000 in 2011.

In an overview of the bulk market, Proctor reported that the market for reds is tight, while the market for whites is getting better. Napa cabernet sauvignon and merlot are in high demand, with buyers moving early to 2010 reds. Overall, bulk market pricing has improved during the last year.

A look at the latest California grape acreage figures showed that non-bearing vines account for just 4% of the state's total acreage - down from an average figure of 10%. That begs the question of what should be replanted, and where.

"The industry right now has to make some decisions about what we want to be," Proctor said. "If we don't replant in an increasing demand market, we will continue to lose market share. (Buyers) will replace us."

To avoid that scenario, growers need to prepare and position themselves for a sustainable and successful future. "Profitability is potentially around the corner, Proctor said. "It might actually be worth being a grapegrower again."

To see more details and the complete presentation, please click this link to download Ciatti's 2011 Vineyard Economics Seminar Report.

GLOBAL MARKET UPDATE – APRIL 2011 Volume 2 Issue No. 4
13 May, 2011

As the first quarter of 2011 comes to a close, we are now watching to see if the current market trends are going to slow, or alternatively, gather momentum. Currently, global wine prices are on the rise and inventory levels continue to push in a downward direction.  Even though economic issues and challenges remain, demand has continued to strengthen in the major consuming markets; leading us to believe that larger harvests by specific countries will not stop the overall tightening of the global marketplace. There are still some issues with certain varieties and in certain areas, but the strength of the market is causing improvement on a global scale. As harvest continues throughout the southern hemisphere, weather continues to negatively influence crop size and in some places quality, which could further strengthen the market.

Wine sales have continued to grow, despite global recessionary conditions, and as we have limited New World production, this demand growth is putting pressure on that production. As global bulk price increases continue, the question remains whether the consumer will be willing to accept price increases on the shelf or will coming bottle price increases negatively affect overall consumption growth? This will be the most important question to answer as the market recovery continues and we try to understand the long term trends.

The Wine Industry appears to be well positioned for growth and while

Argentina: The delayed harvest is finally underway and looks to be larger than the previous few years. The trend of higher demand for red grapes and bulk wine over white varietals is expected to continue. 

Australia: Further rain has caused a large increase in disease pressure, wineries are now looking to harvest as many grapes as possible before disease becomes too prevalent.

California: Bulk wine demand from the San Joaquin Valley continues to outpace supply, causing further upward pressure on pricing, led by Cabernet Sauvignon and Zinfandel. The North Coast has seen an increase in demand for bulk wine, which has caused greater interest in grape contracts.

Chile: Several weeks into harvest, the white grape crop is coming in below average, while the red crop remains unknown. After a slow start, the bulk wine market is seeing renewed levels of activity.

France: Small lots of Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are back on the market but are quickly being purchased by the large suppliers. Sauvignon Blanc remains in oversupply and producers are interested in long term contracts.

Germany: The market has stabilized on higher prices and there are no longer any large lots of wine available. Southern Hemisphere wines continue to be in high demand.

Italy: The Italian bulk wine market has stabilized with Pinot Grigio showing the most activity. South Africa: Warmer temperatures have lowered the harvest volume, however quality remains strong. Almost all 2010 wine has been contracted or is no longer available.

Spain: There is very little Generic Red wine available, however some Generic White remains available. In terms of quality and price, Spain continues to be one of the more competitive countries.

California grape acreage smallest in 13 years
13 May, 2011

California’s total grape acreage has fallen to its lowest level in 13 years, and that is good news for surviving grape growers.

According to the California field office of the USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), there were a total of 842,000 acres of all grapes standing in the state; 50,000 were non-bearing.

That is the lowest non-bearing acreage since 1993.

The 2010 acreage represents a loss of 113,000 acres of grapevines compared to the 955,000 acres standing in 2000. That included 128,000 non-bearing that year.

Low grape prices, especially for raisin and wine grapes, are responsible for this decline. A huge crop in the middle of a downturn is another factor. Wine grape market uncertainty, as well as more attractive crops like almonds, pistachios, pomegranates and others horticultural crops have taken a big roll on California grape acreage. More than 100,000 acres of vines have been bulldozed in the San Joaquin Valley over the past decade and replaced by other crops. Most of that was Thompson seedless.

The wine-type grape acreage for 2010 is estimated at 535,000 acres by NASS.  Of the total acres, 497,000 were bearing and 38,000 were non-bearing. Table grape acreage totaled 94,000 acres with 9,000 non-bearing. Acreage of raisin-type grapes totaled 213,000 acres, of which 210,000 were bearing and 3,000 were non-bearing.

The leading wine-type varieties continued to be Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon.  Flame Seedless was the leading table-type grape variety.

Thompson Seedless continued to be the leading raisin-type variety and was utilized for raisins, fresh market, concentrate, and wine.

The viticultural bloodbath may be over, at least for one season, as supplies seem to be in balance with winery demand. Raisin grape production finally reached equilibrium with demand last year, when for the first time in decades growers received 100 percent of an established field price at harvest. For many years, growers received only a percentage of the field price and the rest went into a surplus pool to be sold at discounted prices.

For wine grapes, prices have been largely less than the cost of production for several years. One reason is the importation of wine in bulk and bottle. That continues with one out of every three bottles of wine sold in the U.S. from foreign grown grapes. Many of these wines are imported by California wineries either as bottled products or bulk which is blended with California wine. Much of this bulk has come into the U.S. from countries with an oversupply. Two years ago so much Chardonnay was imported, it hung over the domestic Chardonnay market for at least two years and some say three seasons. Wineries are opting to buy cheap bulk wine overseas rather than buy it from California growers.

The U.S. recession since 2008 also has had a dramatic impact on wine sales, particularly premium wines. Restaurant wine sales plummeted. Wine drinkers gravitated to lower priced wines with fewer dollars available. As the economy turns around, these value wines continue to be popular since consumers have discovered they can buy good quality wine at bargain prices. Premium wine sales are coming back, but are still lagging behind the value priced wines.

Aggressive buying from wineries

The decline in inventories and increasing overall wine sales are translating to aggressive buying from wineries for 2010 wine grapes, especially for San Joaquin Valley wine grapes, according to Nat DiBuduo, president of Allied Grape Growers, the state’s largest wine grape marketing cooperative.

“Wineries are very active … much more active in March than the last 10 years,” DiBuduo said. There are reports of winery contracts being offered to plant new vineyards. However, it remains to be seen how many growers, burned by years of market malaise, will respond to offers.

“From Lodi south, demand is better for wine grapes, especially for red wine grapes,” he said. Prices are better than last year.

The premium wine grape area of the North Coast is only attracting “tire kickers” but no price offerings, he said. However, there are more inquiries now from wineries for wine grapes from Mendocino and Lake counties than there were for grapes from the same area at harvest time last year.

DiBuduo did not have details on the Central Coast market, but there are reports of stronger demand there. However, the president of Allied said the Central Valley will recover economically faster than the coastal wine grape producing areas.

“I am bullish about wine grape prices this year after being down for so many years. We should be having a good year,” he said.

A huge 2010 crop could derail DiBuduo’s optimism. “We had a large crop last year, yet so far we are still seeing interest from wineries for grapes this year,” he added.

Growers in some areas are expecting a smaller crop in 2010 because weather conditions last year during fruit bud differentiation for 2010 fruiting buds were not ideal.

However, it is “still too early — we are barely at bud break” this season to make a firm prediction about less fruitful vines this year, said DiBuduo.

DiBuduo bemoaned the fact that continued pressure from imports could take the shine off the 2010 crop. According to the Gomberg-Fredrikson Report, bulk imports are down, but there are  more bottled imports coming into the U.S, often imported by California wineries.

“You have to be aware of the total global market — not just bulk wine but bottled wine as well — to understand this local California market,” he added.

“The signs are for a good year. I just hope there is no rain on our parade. Right now at least there is a little more light coming out of the end of the tunnel,” he added.

California Wine Selling Season in Full Swing
13 April, 2011

The grape market in the San Joaquin Valley of California continues to show strong signs of demand out pacing supply. Thompson seedless, the base of the California grape market, looks to be showing a lot of strength in early buying activity. Early indications are for another year of very strong raisin demand, with prices that now surpass the highs of 2010. White Grape Juice Concentrate suppliers were unable to obtain sufficient supply of Thompson in 2010, and with the raisin demand showing continued strength, some believe that this year will be another short supply year for California White Grape Juice Concentrate. The San Joaquin bulk wine market continues to be very active, with strength in volume and pricing on almost all varieties. Despite having two very solid harvests, back to back, the market is showing no signs of lagging, and in fact, pricing looks to be on the rise again for some wines. There seems to be particular strength in the generic end of the market, as generic white wines are being picked off of the market quickly. Cabernet Sauvignon continues to be very strong, with little 2009 inventory remaining, the 2010 action is now in full swing. Zinfandel is very strong today, with both Red Zinfandel and White Zinfandel in short supply. Buyers are having a difficult time finding spot market White Zinfandel, which would indicate that this end of the market is stronger than it has been in several years.

The North Coast of California has seen a strong resurgence in the first quarter of 2011 on all core varietals save Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc. But for Chardonnay, it may only be a matter of time before it catches up with other varietals. As with the rest of state, Cabernet Sauvignon is leading the charge. After 18 months of cautious inventory management by leading brands and larger negociant labels, the bulk wine market, particularly for Napa and Sonoma Cabernet Sauvignon, exploded in January 2011 as many producers who were previously concerned with being caught long on inventory and had shed many higher priced grape contracts are currently scrambling for inventory. With regards to price, Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon is currently trading at $20 - $30 per gallon and Sonoma County Cabernet in the $13-$17 per gallon range. With a lighter 2010 Zinfandel and Pinot Noir harvest, those two varietals have been trading in the $15-$20 per gallon range with strong demand for both. Even Merlot has had a resurgence with all Napa Valley and Sonoma Merlots trading above $10 per gallon and some as high as $16 per gallon. With all of this, we expect to see a much more brisk grape buying season in 2011 because, given the price compression that is happening in the retail sector, it is unrealistic to expect that brands can continue to pay such a high price for the luxury and convenience of "just in time" bottling that a more plentiful bulk market can provide. Those companies with better access to longer term capital would do well to secure supply (or at least a portion of it) in the less volatile grape market during 2011.

Title Name Email Phone
Partner/Broker John Ciatti 4154585150
Partner/Broker Steve Dorfman 4154585161
Partner/Broker Greg Livengood 4154585150
Partner/Broker Glenn Proctor 7073370609
Partner/Broker Chris Welch 4154585168
Partner/Broker John White 4152500685
Broker Todd Azevedo 4152656943
Broker Johnny Leonardo 4157174438
Broker Greg MaGill 5599774040
Broker Dennis Schrapp 9053547878
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After several months of a relatively low level of activity, the bulk market &quot;broke out&quot; in the middle of January. Buyers, perhaps concerned about potential supply issues in ...

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