Euro­pean wine in loss due to weather

Down to Earth - - THE FORTNIGHT -

EUROPE'S WINE pro­duc­tion has dropped to lev­els un­seen since World War II af­ter ex­treme weather bat­tered top pro­duc­ers in Italy, France, Spain and Ger­many. To­tal wine pro­duc­tion across the Euro­pean Union is es­ti­mated to be 145 mil­lion hec­tolitres in 2017, down about 14 per cent from last year's lev­els. Vine­yards have been badly af­fected by ex­treme weather events rang­ing from hail and frost to drought. Italy's pro­duc­tion fell to 40 mil­lion hec­tolitres, down about 26 per cent, while France's out­put fell to around 37 mil­lion hec­tolitres, about 18 per cent be­low last year. Spain's out­put dropped to an es­ti­mated 36 mil­lion hec­tolitres, down 20 per cent from 2016, while Ger­many's is es­ti­mated at 7.5 mil­lion hec­tolitres, down from about 8.5 mil­lion hec­tolitres. The 2016 har­vest was al­ready one of the low­est in 30 years. The Euro­pean Union's Copa-Co­geca farm union has said that while quan­tity would be less, the qual­ity of the har­vested grape was nev­er­the­less ex­pected to be very good across Europe, which should make for ex­cel­lent wine. It added that the com­bi­na­tion of good wine and lower quan­ti­ties meant that prices were also likely to rise.

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