The vineyards suffering in Waipara, New Zealand's driest place

Wine growers around the country are feeling the effects of climate change.

Along with higher temperatures, the $1.5 billion industry is now having to deal with more extreme weather events.

Last year, NIWA's longest recorded dry spell was in Waipara, North Canterbury, which is the home of 80 vineyards - including Greystone Wines.

General Manager Nick Gill moved from Australia to work here. His vineyard produces 18,000 cases of organic wine every year, its location in the valley providing the perfect climate for growing.

The coast is only 9 kilometres away, but the Teviotdale hills provide protection from the cool easterly winds and leave the valley open to warming north-westerlies.

This warm air and the clay limestone soil is ideal for growing grapes, but the region is prone to long dry spells.

In 2018, NIWA recorded the longest dry spell in the country in Waipara, with 36 days of nothing but fine weather.

Vineyard manager Cindy Arthur says it was hard to work with the dry conditions.

"It was pretty crazy; it's pretty hard for the vineyard crew out here working in 30+degC every day."

But despite the dry spell Waipara did receive rainfall last year, recording its second wettest year on record. Mr Gill says it takes planning to survive through the dry spells.

"I think you just have to plan ahead as well as you can and be ready to resource the farming operation as the weather changes."

Extreme variations in weather are set to continue as climate change takes hold, but the staff at Greystone Wines say there'll always be a steady flow of wine.