2009 Top Grape Growers

Welcome to the 2009 edition of American/Western Fruit Grower’s Top Grape Growers report. We survey the nation’s largest grape growing operations annually for inclusion in this report, and the list is ranked according to 2008 acreage owned or leased by one company that is responsible for maintaining it.
In addition to the 2008 acreage, the list includes acreage changes from last year. Total, there was a net decrease of 4,666 acres for all the companies on the list. Farmland Management Services in Turlock, CA, # 20 on our list, had the largest increase, gaining 1,321 acres since last year.

Water Management

The current drought conditions in California mean water conservation is top of mind for growers across the region, and our Top Grape Growers are no exception.

One grower, Robert Abercrombie of Trinchero Family Estates in St. Helena, CA, # 6 on our list, shed some light on what his operation is doing to conserve water.

For the last five years, the company has been involved with Lodi Rules, a certified sustainable winegrape growing program that focuses on irrigation.

“At Trinchero Family Estates, soil moisture monitoring is obtained through neutron probe readings, which are taken once a week during the growing season, and we have neutron probes strategically placed at all of our vineyards,” Abercrombie says. “Neutron probes measure the amount of water in the soil to a depth of 5 feet. This information, along with the rainfall and ET (evapotranspiration) we track at each of our vineyards, helps us make good decisions on when to irrigate and how much to irrigate. Our goal is to give the vines just enough water to ripen the crop through reduced deficit irrigation and reduce the amount of excess vegetation, which is the result of over-irrigation.”

In addition, Trinchero Family Estates uses pressure bombs in some of its vineyards to measure the amount of water stress a plant is under. The operation also evaluates its irrigation equipment regularly to ensure efficiency. “We have had pumps rebuilt because of poor efficiency from pump tests,” Abercrombie says. “Emitter output is measured annually, and we also tear into a few emitters to see what’s going on in them. This has saved water and electricity, which is what we strive to achieve.”
 

 

Top Grape Growers

Rank
Company Name
Year Founded
Grape Acreage
Crops Grown
Total Acreage
2008 Rank (Acreage Change)
1
Bronco Wine Company, CA  1973 35,000* Winegrapes 35,000 1 (+300)
2
Gallo Vineyards, CA
 1933
15,000* Winegrapes
15,000  
2 (-8,000)
3
Beringer Vineyards, CA
1876
9,590* Winegrapes   9,590 3 (n/c)
4
Monterey Pacific, CA
1992
7,846 Winegrapes, Lemons  7,952 4 (+459)
5
Vino Farms, CA
1973
7,353* Winegrapes
7,353
5 (n/c)
6
Trinchero Family Estates, CA
1948
6,500 Winegrapes   6,500  6 (n/c)
7
Delicato Family Vineyards, CA
 1924
6,400 Winegrapes   6,400 8 (+500)
8
Giumarra Vineyards, CA
1930
6,400 Table Grapes 10,000 7 (n/c)
9
Kautz Farms, CA 1948 5,800 Winegrapes, Cherries
5,860
 9 (n/c)
10
Sun World International, CA 1976 5,406 Table Grapes, Stone Fruit
7,104
10 (+406)
11
Delano Farms, CA 1989 5,000* Table Grapes
5,000  
10 (n/c)
12
Scheid Vineyards, CA 1972 4,800 Winegrapes
4,800
13 (+150)
13
Creekside Land Company, CA 1996 4,500 Winegrapes
5,100
15 (+500)
14
Anthony Vineyards, CA
1972
4,400 Table Grapes
4,400
14 (+200)
15
J & L Farms, CA
1990
4,000 Table Grapes
4,000 
15
Sun Pacific Farming, CA
1969
4,000 Table Grapes 10,000
17
Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, WA
1986
3,951 Winegrapes 3,951 19 (+951)
18
Beckstoffer Vineyards, CA
1970
3,811 Winegrapes 3,811 16 (+301)
19
Lucich Farms, CA
1974
3,500* Table Grapes, Pistachios
6,000
17 (n/c)
20
Farmland Management Services, CA
1986
3,338
Winegrapes, Almonds, Walnuts, Pistachios, Apples, Pears, Prunes, Cherries
30,073 24 (+1,321)
21
Stokes Farms, CA
1954 
3,255
Winegrapes, Pears, Cherries
4,945
18 (n/c)
22
Valley Farm Management, CA
1973 
2,800 Winegrapes 4,945 20 (n/c)
23
Gerawan Farming, CA
1938 
2,787 Winegrapes, Juice Grapes, Table Grapes, Stone Fruit 9,002 10 (-2,220)
24
Premiere Entities, c/o Westchester Group, CA
1986 
2,376 Winegrapes, Almonds, Pistachios, Cherries, Apples 12,705 21 (-4)
25
Lent-Burden Farming, CA
1993
2,360 Winegrapes, Almonds, Walnuts 6,232 25 (+470)
*estimated acreage    n/c = no change

 

Topics: , , ,

Leave a Reply

2 comments on “2009 Top Grape Growers

  1. We have developed and patented a portable highly accurate, low cost sugar tester for each picker to ensure table grapes are picked at the right time. It works on SG with a special buffer solution. This system is more reliable than the taste method. We can be contacted on the above email for more information

Grapes Stories
(Photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
Grapes
May 13, 2016
Just How Many Acres Of Grapes Have Been Planted In California?
Nat DiBuduo of Allied Grape Growers says reports may be misleading and there are more than 48,000 nonbearing acres coming into production. Read More
Convex landforms in Virginia are advantageous for grape growers as shown at this summer vineyard meeting. (Photo credit: Tremain Hatch)
Grapes
May 13, 2016
Virginia Looks To Boost Wine Business Through Grants
More than $800,000 is up for grabs for those interested in expanding or adding new vineyards in Virginia. The Virginia Read More
Partial rootzone drying: Two emitters deliver water alternately to either side of a vine’s rootzone. (Photo credit: Yun Zhang)
Grapes
May 13, 2016
Irrigation Method Can ‘Trick’ White Grapes
Washington State University scientists believe they have discovered a sweet spot for irrigating white wine grapes. Dr. Markus Keller, a Read More
Brown marmorated stink bug. (Photo credit: USDA)
Crop Protection
May 6, 2016
Scouting Tips For Growing Grape Pest Threat
Grape growers should be on the lookout this fall for two pests that are popping up in vineyards along the Read More
red blotch featured image
Crop Protection
April 27, 2016
Vector Transmitting Red Blotch Virus Found
Researchers at the University of California, Davis (UC-Davis) have found the vector that seems to be spreading grapevine red blotch, a Read More
Vineyard Labor Downsized GP
Grapes
April 25, 2016
Vineyards Honored For Sustainability
California Green Medal recognizes wineries and vineyards with a focus on sustainability. Read More
Botrytis in 'Riesling'

Photo: Wikimedia commons photo
Grapes
April 22, 2016
Spring Rains Could Increase Phomopsis And Botrytis Infections On Grapes
Areas that don't typically see many infections could be in for a surprise this year, thanks to a wetter spring. Here are some tips to keep these diseases at bay. Read More
The Latest
Grapes
May 24, 2016
Sea Change Coming To California Winegrap…
Vines continue to be pulled from the state’s interior, while planting is expected to increase along coast and in Delta area. Read More
Disease Control
May 19, 2016
Native Plants Reduce Need For Vineyard W…
Scientists in eastern Washington are finding drought-tolerant alternatives to roses at the end of vineyard rows that not only save Read More
Grapes
May 18, 2016
Minnesota Has New Cold-Hardy, Lower-Acid…
The University of Minnesota has released a new cold-hardy grape that holds promise for winemakers wanting to make dryer wines Read More
Grapes
May 13, 2016
Just How Many Acres Of Grapes Have Been …
Nat DiBuduo of Allied Grape Growers says reports may be misleading and there are more than 48,000 nonbearing acres coming into production. Read More
Grapes
May 13, 2016
Virginia Looks To Boost Wine Business Th…
More than $800,000 is up for grabs for those interested in expanding or adding new vineyards in Virginia. The Virginia Read More
Grapes
May 13, 2016
Irrigation Method Can ‘Trick’ White Grap…
Washington State University scientists believe they have discovered a sweet spot for irrigating white wine grapes. Dr. Markus Keller, a Read More
Crop Protection
May 6, 2016
Scouting Tips For Growing Grape Pest Thr…
Grape growers should be on the lookout this fall for two pests that are popping up in vineyards along the Read More
Crop Protection
April 27, 2016
Vector Transmitting Red Blotch Virus Fou…
Researchers at the University of California, Davis (UC-Davis) have found the vector that seems to be spreading grapevine red blotch, a Read More
Grapes
April 25, 2016
Vineyards Honored For Sustainability
California Green Medal recognizes wineries and vineyards with a focus on sustainability. Read More
Grapes
April 22, 2016
Spring Rains Could Increase Phomopsis An…
Areas that don't typically see many infections could be in for a surprise this year, thanks to a wetter spring. Here are some tips to keep these diseases at bay. Read More
Grapes
April 21, 2016
McManis Family Vineyards: Treating Emplo…
It’s no coincidence that more than half the full-time vineyard workers at McManis Family Vineyards have been with the company for 20-plus years. Read More
Grapes
April 21, 2016
Are Muscadine Grapes The Next ‘Super Fru…
UF/IFAS researchers are seeking to expand market, educate consumers. Read More
Grapes
April 20, 2016
Samuel Filler Named New York Wine & …
Filler will take over beginning in January, replacing long-time President Jim Trezise. Read More
Grapes
April 15, 2016
Using Wastewater For Vineyard Irrigation
New research shows wastewater could be a sustainable solution for irrigating vineyards. Read More
Grapes
April 15, 2016
Cornell Researcher Wins Award For Helpin…
Marc Fuchs receives the New York Wine & Grape Foundation 2016 Research Award for addressing and combating grapevine diseases. Read More
Grapes
April 7, 2016
New Technology Guides Vineyard Managemen…
VinSense LLC has received a grant from the National Science Foundation to fund expansion of a software program that helps growers make irrigation and other vineyard management decisions based on climate, weather, soil variation, and other factors. Read More
Grapes
April 7, 2016
New Program Helps Pennsylvania Vineyards…
Grape growers in Pennsylvania’s Lake Erie basin are being invited to participate in a new program called VinES (Vested In Environmental Sustainability). The goal of the program is to reduce pollution into Lake Erie while increasing growers’ profitability. Read More
Grapes
March 31, 2016
Three Tips For Preventing Trunk Disease
Trunk disease can be avoided with proper preventative measures. It may require an investment of time and money upfront, but you’ll save on replanting costs in the long run.  Read More
[gravityform id="62" title="false" description="false"]