According to The Drink Business, the famous champagne brand Moet (Mot Chandon) recently suffered a bizarre attack on its vineyard in Champagne town A. 14 sheep and a solar panel were stolen from the vineyard.
Photo courtesy of: Le Wine Guest
When a shepherd who manages the sheep on behalf of Moët & Chandon showed up at the vineyard on January 2, he found that the solar panels had been removed from the fence in the garden, and the sheep that had been in the vineyard were also missing.
The stolen vineyard was used by Moet to conduct trials on sustainable farming. Last February, Moet Hennessy announced that its entire wine division would stop using herbicides by the end of 2020 and that it intended to invest 20 million euros to establish a research center focused on sustainable viticulture at a new Champagne research site.
In order to stop using herbicides and avoid using other chemical or mechanical means that could also achieve weed control, the winery put a number of sheep into the vineyard, the same 14 sheep that were the subject of the theft.
Several wineries around the world use this regularly in their vineyards, such as the British sparkling winery Nyetimber and Yealands wine in Marlborough, New Zealand, which uses a small sheep breed called Babydoll that ensures it does not eat the low-hanging bunches of grapes.
In addition to placing sheep, the winery also installed a solar electric fence to ensure security, and the stolen battery panels were used to generate electricity for the fence.
The police have not yet found the suspect who stole the sheep and battery panels.