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Sonoma County Zinfandel Update - VFA Gets It Right Again

Sonoma County Zinfandel Update

In 2013, District 3 Zinfandel sold for an average of $2498.88 per ton. In case you’re not familiar with the USDA’s pricing districts, District 3 consists of Sonoma and Marin Counties. I had predicted that average price per ton would rise to $2586.23 in 2014. In fact, it did rise, but only to $2543.78 – about $46 or 1.8%, outpacing an inflation rate of 0.8%, according to Department of Labor data. Yields, on the other hand, fell by 22%. Average Brix levels came in at 25.9 degrees in 2014, quite a bit higher than 2013’s 25.3 degrees, which would partially explain the lower yields. So, how did my price prediction fare?

How Close Was the Prediction?

Actual average price was 1.64% lower than VFA’s predicted price. I like to see my predictions fall within 2% and worry about the model if the prediction is more than 2.5% off, so this one goes in the Win column.

Where Did Actual Numbers Fall in VFA’s Probability Distribution

As you know if you read this blog regularly, 68% of predictions should fall within one standard deviation of the prediction. This prediction was off by .48 standard deviations, a good number. That means that my model predicted a 32% chance that prices would be at this level or lower and a 68% chance they would be at this level or higher. The model also predicted a roughly 89% chance that prices would rise, which they did. If these numbers were used for scenario analysis, they would have fallen well within the 60% probability range that I use as my narrowest range estimate.

Anyways, I’m satisfied with this model and its predictions. I’ll check back in tomorrow with a look at another variety-district analysis. Cheers.

Music played during the creation of this blog post (all, fittingly, Sonoma grown):

Enjoyment Has Occurred, The Pine Needles

Detoxify, John Allair

Paper Airplanes, Mr. December

Clancy Never Learned His Lessons, David Hamilton

Church Street Blues, The Brothers Comatose

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