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May 30, 2022 View:

French wine industry sees record grape harvest this year

The French wine industry is under a cloud in 2020, with declining sales caused by the epidemic and the heavy blow of U.S. trade tariffs that have forced wineries to make large quantities of wine into industrial alcohol and hand sanitizer. A few months ago, the European Union provided all 33 French wineries with permits to convert unsold wine into ethanol to make antibacterial gels.

Photo courtesy of: Wine Click

However, the 2020 grape harvest brings new hope to the winery.

Early signs of Burgundy"s 2020 harvest don't look promising-it started earlier than expected, a sign that many feel does not bode well for Burgundy's harvest, which began on August 12, the earliest harvest in six centuries. But soon, most of France's wine regions are picking much more.

Harvesting began in August in almost all regions, making significant progress compared to 2019, the agricultural industry said in a statement. This can be explained by the fact that the spring was the second warmest season in 120 years, while the winter was relatively warm. This forecast is up 6.3 percent from 45 million hectoliters in 2019. Initial yields were impacted by bad weather, but are close to the five-year average. The grape harvest started particularly early in most wine regions, with a record in Champagne, and began in mid-August. One hundred liters is equivalent to 100 liters, or 133 standard wine bottles, so the forecast is expected to reach 6 billion bottles by 2020.

According to preliminary estimates released last month, the French Ministry of Agriculture is looking at total wine production of 447-45.7 million hectares this year. Worsening drought conditions prompted the ministry to lower its production forecasts for Burgundy, Beaujolais, Côtes du Rhône, the center and southeast, but these were offset by higher yields expected in other regions, thanks to last month's rains.

In the prestigious Bordeaux region, wine production is expected to approach last year's 5.4 million liters, while Burgundy-Beaujolais production will rise 12 percent to 2.1 million, despite a drop in Pinot Noir production.

In Languedoc-Roussillon, by far the largest wine region in France, production is expected to increase by 7 percent over last year to 13 million hectares.