Winegrapes grown in the Central Valley have an agricultural value of more than $345 million which contributes to the $5.4 billion of overall value for crops grown in the region.
While milk is still king of the crops at $1.2 billion in value, grapes are second in San Joaquin County’s top 10 crops and near the top 10 in Stanislaus County, according to the most recent crop reports issued by the agricultural commissioners offices in both counties.
However, grapes weren’t always this successful: in the past 15 years a grape glut, due to over planting, contributed to a winegrape malaise. Among the causes were lower prices, imported chardonnay by wineries which hurt local chardonnay producers and hammered the domestic market, growers having to custom crush or take what wineries offered at the crusher, and inconsistent contracts.
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