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Wine industry contributes $220bn to US economy

By Rachel Arthur

- Last updated on GMT

Wine industry contributes $220bn to US economy

Related tags Wine industry Economics

The wine industry contributes $219.9bn to the US economy a year, making it a ‘major economic engine’, according to Wine America. The industry also provides nearly a million direct jobs.

A new report unveiled by Wine America this month shows the economic contribution of the wine industry to the US economy in 2017, and is the first detailed study of its kind.

US wine industry

  • 10,236 winery facilities across all 50 states
  • 677,629 acres of vineyards in 49 states
  • Supports 1,738,270 jobs
  • Total annual wages exceed $75bn
  • Nearly 43 million tourist visits to wineries
  • More than $17.6bn in tourist expenditures
  • Generates a total of $36.5bn in total taxes, including more than $19bn to the federal government and $17.4bn to states and localities.

“We have long known intuitively that our industry’s economic impact was enormous, but it’s nice to now have hard numbers which illustrate that,” ​said Wine America President Jim Trezise. “As our industry grows, so will our many contributions to the American economy.

“Wine is the ultimate value-added product, which preserves precious agricultural land, provides American jobs, attracts tourists, generates taxes, and enhances the quality of life”.

Nationwide industry

California is by far the largest grape and wine-producing area – accounting for around 85% of the country’s total output. Here, the wine industry generates close to $71.2bn in total economic activity.

However, wine is produced in every single US state, and the industry is growing rapidly in regions where public officials have created a business friendly climate to promote industry growth, says Wine America.

The economic impact study measured direct, supplier, induced, and total output including jobs, wages and taxes.

Of the total impact ($219.9bn), the wine industry’s direct impact is $84.5bn; the supplier impact $58.8bn; and the induced impact $76.6bn.

The wine industry provides nearly one million direct jobs (998,496) and over $33.5bn in annual wages. When supplier and induced figures are included, the totals are 1,738,270 jobs and $75.8bn in wages.

“The broader economic impact flows throughout the nation, generating business for firms seemingly unrelated to the wine industry,”​ says the report. “Real people, with real jobs, working in industries as varied as farming, banking, accounting, manufacturing, packaging, transportation, printing, and advertising depend on the wine industry for their livelihoods.”

John Dunham, of John Dunham & Associates of New York, which conducted the study, said: “The American wine industry is a major economic engine, generating investment, jobs, tourism, taxes, and ancillary benefits to suppliers and local communities across the nation.

“The production, distribution, sale, and consumption of American wine benefits many sectors of the US economy.”

Wine America is the national association of American wineries. 

Top economic contributor: California

California’s wine industry, which boasts a total of 4,581 wine producers and 560,000 acres of vineyards, generates close to $71.2bn in total economic activity.

The industry directly employs 259,602 people, and generates an additional 90,102 jobs in supplier and ancillary industries which supply goods and services to the industry, and whose sales depend on the wine industry’s economic activity. Ultimately, 485,056 jobs are created and supported by the wine industry.

“The California wine industry provides good jobs, paying an average of $51,600 in annual wages and benefits. The total wages generated by direct, indirect, and induced economic activity driven by the wine industry are $25bn,”​ says the report.

Tourism also provides a major boost: the ‘wine country’ regions generate 23.6 million tourist visits and $9.7bn in annual tourism expenditures, benefiting local economies and tax bases.

Related topics Markets Beer, Wine, Spirits, Cider

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