Bordeaux Harvest "Worst Since 1991"

The 2013 grape harvest in Bordeaux is predicted to be the smallest since 1991 due to the adverse weather conditions, according to the iconic region’s wine trade body.

The Comité Interprofessionnel des Vins de Bordeaux (CIVB) confirmed on Friday that the combination of a spate of unseasonal hailstorms and a poor spring had reduced the size of this year’s crop by 1 million hectoliters of wine; a 20% decrease on 2012.

“In terms of volume, the 2013 harvest is going to be the worst since 1991,” said Bernard Farges, president of the CIVB.

Compared to previous vintages, a crop in the low 4 million hectoliter range is very small. In 2011, the Bordeaux region produced 5.46 million hl of wine, 5.71 million in 2010, and 5.74 million in 2009.

Coulure, a form of poor fruit set whereby the smallest berries on a bunch fall off immediately after flowering due to cold wet conditions, has been credited as being one of the major factors behind the dismal harvest in 2013. .

The condition is believed to have caused a loss of around 800,000 hectoliters, while the hailstorms of the summer wiped out an additional 200,000 to 300,000.

Farges added: “These are two different problems. The impact of coulure has affected all vineyards. The hail was concentrated in one area and some growers won’t have anything to harvest at all."
At the beginning of last month. one of Bordeaux's most important white wine growing regions, Entre-deux-Mers, sustained serious damage after a huge hailstorm ripped through the region. An estimated €20 million worth of damage was sustained and the hailstones were reported to be as big as cricket balls. Not only were many of the vines stripped bare, but birds were said to have been killed during the storm.
Main image by mescon

Written by: Ben Moss

Ben Moss 


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