(Contributed by Gregg McPherson) Californian’s have much to be thankful for – great weather, fabulous beaches, soaring mountains, and a thriving economy. Many people focus on Silicon Valley and the amazing technology that is produced there when they think of what drives California’s growth. Not as many people realize how important the wine and grape growing industry is to the people of the state. These are mostly small to medium family businesses that provide quality jobs and a product that is loved across the US and around the world. California’s wines generate roughly $32 billion in retail sales. That is a staggering number.
The good news is that California’s vineyards and wineries have grown steadily since the end of prohibition. This growth is accelerating as we reach the late 2010’s. Here are some of the key financial, agricultural and employment highlights of California’s wine industry. We hope these numbers give you a greater appreciation for just how important this industry is to the state and the country. Created by the California Winery Advisor, publisher of the popular Best Wine Club Guide.