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France to pour away £170m of wine in desperate bid to stem tumbling prices as sales crash
- The popularity of craft beer and the cost-of-living crisis have been blamed
- Despite a dramatic drop in sales, the production has continued to rise
The French government is set to pour away millions of litres of wine – and will even rip up vineyards – in a bid to stem tumbling prices after falling sales.
A rise in the popularity of craft beer, the cost-of-living crisis, and the after-effects of Covid lockdowns have been blamed for a dramatic drop in sales.
But production has continued to rise, leading to a glut of unsold wine threatening to push down prices.
Major wine-producing regions, particularly the famed Bordeaux area of France, are struggling.
The French government has announced a £170 million plan to buy up huge quantities of the excess, which will be destroyed.
The French government is set to pour away millions of litres of wine – and will even rip up vineyards – in a bid to stem tumbling prices after falling sales
A rise in the popularity of craft beer, the cost-of-living crisis, and the after-effects of Covid lockdowns have been blamed for a dramatic drop in sales
The alcohol content will be recycled to make hand sanitiser, cleaning products or perfume.
READ MORE: Wine and spirit drinkers will pay more but cost of weaker drinks has fallen as alcohol duty changes come into force today – but how much has YOUR favourite tipple risen by?
French agriculture minister Marc Fesneau said the fund was ‘aimed at stopping prices collapsing and so that wine-makers can find sources of revenue again’.
But he stressed that the industry needed to ‘look to the future, think about consumer changes… and adapt’.
A large proportion of the French money – £135 million – is coming from the European Union.
Figures from the European Commission say wine consumption for the current year is estimated to have fallen 15 per cent in France, seven per cent in Italy, ten per cent in Spain, and a staggering 34 per cent in Portugal.
However, production in the EU has risen by four per cent.
The Commission said the worst affected areas were those producing reds and rosés from regions of France, Spain and Portugal.
The fall in consumption is part of a trend for people preferring beer and other drinks.
Also, sales have not bounced back after the pandemic shut many restaurants and bars.
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