Though concerns remain about the performance of the country's top winemakers, Australian exports continue their seemingly non-stop ascent. Figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics yesterday showed that over A$2 billion fo wine was exported from the country in 2001-2002.

Volumes came in at 418.4m litres. The exact total of value was A$2.105 billion.
Unsurprisingly the UK remains the largest market for the wine, accounting for 48.2% of the total. The US, though, now accounts for 22.2%.

A greater number of red grapes were once more harvested than white, 893,131 tonnes versus 860,757 tonnes.  And the main varieties for winemaking were Shiraz (326,564 tonnes), Cabernet Sauvignon (257,223 tonnes), Chardonnay (256,328 tonnes) and Merlot (104,423 tonnes).

And the area in Australia under vine continues to increase, up 9.8% for the year. All states except Tasmania contributed to the rise.