Reuters.com reported on Aug. 7 that Italy, a major wine producer, is hoping to cut back on premium wine production in the upcoming harvest season to raise prices as the new crown virus pandemic hits wine sales and leads to a glut of stocks.
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In Italy, demand for wine is expected to fall by nearly a third as city closures force hotels, restaurants and bars to close for months at a time, and as tourists are virtually absent. Wine exports are also down. Manufacturers fear a loss of about 1 billion euros this year, or 9 percent of total sales. Italy aims to cut production by about 5 percent from last year and has set aside 100 million euros to compensate vintners who have discarded 15 to 50 percent of their grapes, but the winemakers" association says the funds may not be enough.
France's wine industry has been hurt by a trade dispute between the United States and the European Union. Italian wine has not been affected by the tariffs, but officials said concerns about the policy change led to an increase in exports to the U.S. and a drop in prices earlier this year.