UC releases new cost study for growing winegrapes.

UC Agricultural Issues Center has released a new study on the cost and returns of establishing a vineyard and producing winegrapes in the northern San Joaquin Valley.

The cultural practices described represent the establishment and production operations, as well as materials of a well-managed cabernet sauvignon vineyard in this region. The costs, materials, and practices shown in this study will not apply to all farms. Growers, UC ANR Cooperative Extension farm advisors, and other agricultural associates provided input and reviewed the methods and findings of the study.

The hypothetical 200-contiguous-acre farm is located in Crush District 11, which includes San Joaquin and Sacramento counties. The economic life of the grower-owned-and-operated cabernet sauvignon vineyard used in this cost analysis is 25 years. Vine management includes hand operations such as pruning, suckering, shoot removal and positioning. The grapevines are mechanically trimmed and harvested. This study does not include cluster thinning, but other winegrape varieties may require thinning due to compactness.

The authors describe the assumptions used to identify current costs for establishment and production of the winegrapes, material inputs, cash and non-cash overhead. Ranging analysis tables show profits over a range of prices and yields. Other tables show the monthly cash costs, the costs and returns per acre, hourly equipment costs, and the whole farm annual equipment, investment and business overhead costs.

The new study is titled “Sample Costs to Establish a Vineyard and Produce Winegrapes- Cabernet Sauvignon Variety, San Joaquin Valley North, San Joaquin and Sacramento Counties – 2016.”

Free copies of this study and sample cost-of-production studies for many other commodities are available. To download the cost studies, visit the UC Davis Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics website at http://coststudies.ucdavis.edu.

The cost and returns program is funded by the UC Agricultural Issues Center, which is part of UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and the UC Davis Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics

For additional information or an explanation of the calculations used in the studies, contact the Agricultural Issues Center at (530) 752-4651, Jeremy Murdock, jmmurdock@ucdavis.edu or UCCE San Joaquin County Farm Advisor, Paul Verdegaal, psverdegaal@ucanr.edu.