Bad weather and overabundance: increased risks for Italian wines

Bad weather and overabundance: increased risks for Italian wines

Lights and shadows following the grape harvest

In the last few months, bad weather hit Italy. From August to the first days of November there were many floods and storms that caused considerable inconvenience for Italians, in addition to tragic consequences such as those of Casteldaccia. Of course, also the economy has suffered, particularly the wine sector.

The concern for the outcome of the grape harvest was really high, but the latest data from Coldiretti show that there has been a 16% increase in production compared to last year - which was one of the worst of the postwar period. Even the Assoenologi, in early September, released positive forecasts for the 2018 grape harvest.

What happens if there is too much grapes?

As we know, these predictions proved to be accurate and the widespread data from Coldiretti, Cia, and Confagricoltura talk about good quality and quantity of grapes harvested. In some areas, the harvest even turned out to be all too abundant, to the point that this overabundance of grapes resulted in a 30-40% fall in prices.

A funny example is the episode of a winemaker from Treviso who, not knowing what to do with all the grapes, decided to sell it online at 60 cents a kilo. This news, however amusing, certainly launches an alarming signal on the speculation that is taking place as a result of this overabundance.

The other side of the coin: the "Southern Situation"

But if on the one hand there has been an extremely positive production, in other parts of Italy the situation is diametrically opposite. Bad weather has killed a lot of grapes in some areas of the peninsula, especially in the south.

Sure enough, many regions affected by the floods have seen a decline in wine production. For example, the production of Primitivo and Negroamaro in Puglia decreased by 30% according to Cia estimates. Coldiretti too has launched the alarm, stressing that in some areas, such as the province of Taranto, the production fell even by 60%.

However, Puglia is not the only region hit by storms and floods in recent times: also some areas of Calabria, Sardinia, Sicily - which has suffered violent floods in recent weeks - and a small part of Veneto have received damage during the harvesting period and the previous months.

The risk of counterfeiting increses: is this EU's fault?

The risk of decreasing the production of wine in some areas certainly causes serious damage to both the domestic economy and the export market. One of the consequences of this reduction in production is, for example, the reduction in the use of seasonal workers. As far as exports are concerned, a gap could be created between supply and demand, with the consequence of a possible increase in counterfeiting and the proliferation of fake "Made in Italy" wines.

To that you can add the amendment of regulation 607/09 on wine labeling prepared by the EU Commission, which provides for the possibility of inserting only the vinification area on the label and not the cultivation area, further increasing the risk of counterfeiting. Our article on to the issue explains in detail why this choice of the European Union is a very serious threat to Made in Italy.

Fabio Guida

CEO di Followine, quando ha un po' di tempo scrive quattro righe.

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