San Diego County Vintners Association releases 2023 Economic Impact of Wineries report as it celebrates San Diego Wine Week culminating in Wine Festival on Sunday, May 21
SAN DIEGO – May 18, 2023 – The San Diego County Vintners Association (SDCVA), a trade organization dedicated to supporting the local winemaking community, released the 2023 San Diego County Economic Impact of Wineries report today as it celebrates San Diego Wine Week starting May 15, ending with a wine festival on Sunday, May 21.
According to the report, County wineries realized about $49.1 million in gross sales last year, an 11% jump over 2021, representing an all-time-high. The number of active and planned wineries in San Diego County rose to 166 in 2022.
Newer and expanding wineries led industry job growth with an estimated 709.5 jobs in 2022, a 6% annual increase, while yields from last year’s harvest dropped slightly. Wineries also report moving past COVID-19 with 45% indicating business has returned to normal levels. Still, inflation and prices are a concern, and some wineries have adjusted by operating with fewer employees. Wildfire insurance coverage is a major issue for local vineyard owners with 54% stating insurance rates have increased.
“I am glad to see that the wine industry continues to flourish in San Diego County. We must continue to support and protect our wineries as they not only strengthen our local economy but bring our communities together. I am grateful to the San Diego County Vintners Association for their continued advocacy and commitment to this industry,” says San Diego County Supervisor Joel Anderson.
California Assembly Member Marie Waldron says it’s been a challenging year for vintners between a slowing economy, declining industry sales, and competition from spirits.
“Yet the San Diego wine industry continues to thrive. As a member of the Assembly Select Committee on Wine, I fervently support the vibrant wine making industry, which continues to make valuable contributions to our economy and culture,” Waldron says.
Locally distilled spirits continue to pose possible competition to County wine sales. San Diego County distilleries generated about $25.1 million in 2022, a $6+ million jump over 2021.
“Amidst the challenges of inflation, San Diego’s thriving wine industry remains resilient, beckoning tourists, generating employment, and playing a pivotal role in our vibrant agricultural tapestry. These vital contributions bolster the vitality of our local economy,” says San Diego County Supervisor Jim Desmond.
San Diego wineries are optimistic about the industry’s growth, particularly as supply chain issues seem to have passed for local wineries.
“The county’s wine industry is flourishing. During San Diego’s Wine Week, culminating in a wine festival and tasting, we celebrate our local vintners and the rich culture, economic strength, and world-class wines crafted throughout the County,” says SDCVA President Ray Schnorr, co-owner of Highland Valley Vineyards.
Bonnie D. Shaw