Jun 14, 2023

Climate change focus for Hawke’s Bay wine

As evidenced by the disastrous impact from the recent Cyclone Gabrielle, Hawke’s Bay (including it's wine growing community) is seeing significant impacts from increased weather variability. A severe drought in 2020 followed by difficult (particularly wet) growing seasons through 2022 and 2023 have brought discussions on climate change further to the forefront.

At a national level, New Zealand’s Sustainable Winegrowing certification program educates our winegrowers on climate change and provides the industry with strategies for reducing carbon emissions across both winemaking and viticulture. It also provides a framework for tracking and reviewing key metrics on an annual basis, such as fuel usage and other steps taken to minimise our carbon footprint.

New Zealand’s National Institute for Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) has worked with the wine industry to model climate change projections for each wine growing region, including Hawke’s Bay. While the industry works to reduce our direct impacts on climate change, this work sets a scientific baseline on which we can make plans to adapt to those changes that are already occurring.

Within the Hawke’s Bay Winegrowing community, there has been an increased focus for sustainability on;

  1. Improving our ability to manage increased disease pressure
  2. Managing scarce regional water resources, particularly for dry years
  3. Recovery from the recent severe weather events

There is also more focus on approaches for regenerative viticulture (such as healthier soils and increased levels of organic matter) and increasing biodiversity in vineyards planned for the near term as well.

To learn more about Hawke’s Bay wine climate and soil visit the Hawke’s Bay Wine website, or discover more about our wine region at Hawke’s Bay Great Wine Capital and follow us on Instagram.