About Wine

California Wine Facts

Wine Education
Written by Fred Swan
Sunday, 03 May 2009 23:50

California crushed about 3.8 billion tons of wine grapes in 2011.

The amount of white wine grapes crushed has not changed much in the last 20 years. The amount of red wine grapes crushed is 2.5 times greater now than it was in 1988.

California is the 4th largest wine producer in the world. The top three are France, Italy and Spain.


California produces more than 90% of all U.S. wine.

95% of all U.S. wine exports are from California.

California wineries shipped 554 million gallons of wine in 2007. That’s an increase of 31% since 1997.

82% of those wine shipments are for the U.S. market. The retail value of the U.S. sales was $18.9 billion.

The total impact on the U.S. economy of the California wine industry was $125 billion in 2007.

The industry accounts for 875,000 U.S. jobs. Just over 300,000 of those are in California.

The industry pays $13 billion in state and federal taxes.

It attracts nearly 20 million tourists to California per year generating $2 billion in revenue for the state.

Top 20 California Wine Grapes by Crush Volume, 2007


Top 20 California Red Wine Grapes, 2007

Source for all data above: USDA, NASS, California Field Office and the Wine Institute.


top 20 California White Wine Grapes, 2007


In 2007, there were 2,687 bonded wineries in California. Nearly all are family-owned.

In 1999, there were only 1,364 bonded wineries.

In 1970, there were just 240.

Source for bonded winery data: U.S. Tax and Trade Bureau and Wine Institute