In the 1990’s, wine production which had been typically 70 % white, 30% red, changed to 60% red, 40% white, to reflect new tastes. International wine makers and consultants arrived to improve the overall quality- dealing with which types of grapes to grow, where to plant the vines and how to craft world class wines. Growers invested in state of the art equipment and modern techniques replaced less professional methods. It was during this time that a proliferation of wineries took place all over Israel. In fact, 85% of all operating wineries in Israel today were founded in the last decade!
There are currently over 25 commercial wineries and over 150 boutique wineries in Israel where wine making has become a personal obsession with wine makers striving to produce world class wines. This exciting surge in boutique ‘start ups’ notwithstanding, the three largest wineries account for 75 % of the annual harvest; the top 5 wineries total 84 % of the harvest, and the top 11 account for 95% of the total annual harvest.
Facts About the Wine Industry:
Hectares: 3,800 ha. (9,500 acres; 38, 000 dunams.)
Harvest 2005: 45,483 tons
Wine Market in Israel: $ 175 million dollars (20% imports.)
Consumption in Israel: 7 litters a head
2005 Export of Israeli Wines ($m): $ 13.8 million
Main Importers of Israeli Wines: 1. U.S.A; 2. France; 3. U.K.; 4. Germany; 5. Canada