Bordeaux wine producers yesterday voted to boost flagging prices by supplementing EU distillation subsidies and borrowing EUR15m (US$18.5m).
"The aim is to reduce stocks, and get a better price for our wine," said Andre de la Bretesche, director of the Bordeaux and Bordeaux Supérieurs Union, which represents almost half the area's total production.
The union says 320,000 hectolitres of wine must be pulled from sale and distilled, to return prices to EUR1,000 a tonne - or 900 hectolitres - from current levels of EUR600-700.
The loan will boost the EU distillation subsidy EUR450 a tonne to EUR800-900.
Repayments will be financed by union members, who will pay E1.10 per hectolitre of wine approved as AOC by the union, over the next five years.