Q: What’s the largest wine state?
OK, that’s an easy one: California, in all ways.
Q2: What’s the second largest wine state?
Washington…New York…Texas? Yes, and no, in different ways.
WineAmerica’s 2022 National Economic Impact Study vividly demonstrates the incredible value-added nature of wine and its huge contributions to the American economy: $276 billion in 2022.
The study also details the wine industry’s economic impact in each of the 50 wine-producing states, including how that impact varies in different ways.
Let’s first acknowledge that California is by far the largest wine state, accounting for some $88 billion of the $276 billion national total, or nearly a third. We also credit the Golden State for its many contributions in putting the United States on the world’s wine map.
But wine is also vital to the other 49 states, especially in what I’ll call the “second tier”, arbitrarily defined as New York, Oregon, Texas, and Washington. So…who’s #2?
- Washington (in wine producers and vineyard acres)
- New York (in tourist visits and expenditures, and taxes)
- Texas (in total economic impact: $20.35 billion)
Texas?…How could that be?
I asked Victor Fung of John Dunham & Associations, who explained that it has to do with wholesale and retail sectors in that huge state, which accounts for 141,235 jobs and $6.71 billion in wages. Texas has the fewest wine producers (443) of all four states, and the second fewest tourist visits and expenditures, but that doesn’t matter in the total picture. The large population (#2) and plethora of restaurants and retail outlets throughout the Lone Star state more than make up for that. Texas is #2 (after CA) in wholesale impact and #3 (after CA and FL) in retail, accounting for the large amounts of jobs, wages, and total output.
To give you a more complete picture in summary fashion, below is a quick table of rank in various categories, with the Population figure based on national statistics including all 50 states, and the others ranked from 2 to 5 based on the metrics in our study (remember: CA is #1).
NY OR TX WA
Population Rank 4 27 2 13
Wine Producers 4 3 5 2
Vineyard Acres 4 3 5 2
Jobs 3 5 2 4
Wages 3 5 2 4
Tourist Visits 2 4 5 3
Tourist $$ 2 4 5 3
Total Taxes 2 5 3 4
TOTAL IMPACT 3 5 2 4
FYI, the total impact figures are:
- TX: $20.35 B
- NY: $14.93 B
- WA: $ 9.51 B
- OR: $ 7.18 B
That combined $51.97 B is nearly 20% of the national figure, so including California the five largest states account for about half of the national impact, with the other 45 states accounting for the rest.
But…and this is vital to understand…every state’s wine industry is important to its economy–not only in dollars and sense, but also as a source of regional pride and quality of life. Detailed data and related information for all 50 states is on our website.
The New York Wine & Grape Foundation has already taken advantage of that by publishing that state’s statistics as the lead story in its weekly newsletter. We encourage all other state associations to do the same.
Wine–the All-American Art Form