Grape Harvest 2016/2017’s official opening in the state of Rio Grande do Sul (RS) on the morning of this Saturday (4) was marked by optimism due to the great volume and quality of the raw material that can now be verified. Monte Belo do Sul received the event in which Governor of RS, José Ivo Sartori; Agriculture, Husbandry, and Irrigation Secretary, Ernani Polo; and Mayor Adenir José Dalle, as well as the parliamentarians and mayors from municipalities of the Serra Gaúcha region were present.  The president of the Brazilian Wine Institute (Ibravin), Dirceu Scottá, mentioned the expectation of a harvest that should exceed the 600 million kilos predicted at the beginning of the harvest. The director cited the break which reached 57% in the last harvest as one of the factors, along with the economic crisis and tax increases – especially IPI – for a retraction that reached 18% in Brazilian wine product sales in 2016. “This scenario shows that the market no longer accepts tax and price increases. Ibravin has been concentrating efforts to decrease production costs, to increase productivity, and in promotional activities to take back growth this year,” he projects. Scottá cited that the sector’s maturity made it possible to arrive at a consensus regarding the grape’s minimum price with a readjustment of 18%, actions to expand Technical Assistance and Rural Outreach (Ater), and the arrival of the Safe Food Program (PAS) Grape for Processing for wineries and viticulturists.
Governor Sartori guaranteed that the state is a partner of the wine sector, stimulating expansion of production areas and technological aggregation which are evermore present in agricultural activity. The governor also sees the harvest’s fruits that were opened this Saturday with optimism. “We need to look ahead but also recognize the efforts of our ancestors who made it possible for us to get her in conditions to celebrate yet another vintage wine. The wine sector is of immense importance to the economy and culture of our state,” he spoke.
Secretary Ernani Polo reiterated the government’s partnership with Ibravin, citing the Vitiviniculture Development Fund (Fundovitis) as fundamental to the qualification and promotion of Gaúcho wine. “Ibravin has done an excellent job, making suggestions to the government so that policies for agriculture come to the front with greater agility,” he said, referring to the Agro + RS program, which aims to simplify processes and service norms of the productive sector so as to reduce bureaucracy in the public sphere and stimulate economic growth.
After the official announcements, including the welcoming speech of the mayor of Monte Belo do Sul, Ademir Dallé, the retinue made the symbolic harvest at Famiglia Barbieri vineyards, location of the harvest’s official opening in RS.

YEAR VOLUME (millions of kg)
2011 709,6
2012 696,9
2013 611,3
2014 606,1
2015 702,9
2016 300,3