FRANCE: Government reacts to wine crisis
Following crisis talks in Paris on Wednesday with France's Agriculture minister, Hervé Gaymard, Bordeaux and Beaujolais producers will now be able to add the name of the vine to vin de pays labels.
From 2006, growers in these two regions who produce almost exclusively AOC wines, will be able to sell vin de pays labelled "Burgundy Chardonnay" or "Bordeaux Merlot," for example.
Gaymard said the measure would "contribute to clarifying and simplifying the presentation of French wines on international markets."
AOCs will no longer be able to refer to vines on their labels which, even though already being a prohibited practice, is used by some growers.
President Bordeaux's wine trade federation, CIVB, Christian Delpeuch, called the measure "a very good step in the right direction."
Other crisis measures include a 50% increase from €10m to €20m in public aid for the promotion of French wines, especially for exports. However, Delpeuch expressed his disappointment at the promise of extra funding which, according to him, would change little, adding that everything would depend on what the government was prepared to put up front financially.
The crisis talks also discussed the possibility of allowing curled strips of wood in barrels to aid the ageing process and irrigation of vines.
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