The four cooperative winemaking federations of the Languedoc-Roussillon region of France are calling on government help claiming a drop in turnover for vins de pays and vins de table by FF800m (US$109m) during 1999 and 2001 could cause mounting anger in the vineyards.

According to a report by, the chairmen of the federations have told authorities they will have difficulty containing any anger during the harvest period and are calling for aide in terms of the exceptional distillation of 5m hl of wine at the price of FF19 per hl as well as subsidies for wine growers in difficulty.

The region has said that it is prepared to restructure its vineyards and the wine industry for the second time in 20 years. Winemakers are also proposing to merge into cooperatives in order to compete with the major international wine brands of the new world.

The federations are also calling for early retirement for winemakers over 55 and support for hiring technical staff.

Wines & Spirits in France 2001