Wineries Around the World Grapple With Climate Change
Jul 02 2018 | 11:10:26
In our rapidly changing climate—where
weather patterns are less predictable, and drought and heatwaves have become longer and more intense—the world's wine producers can be particularly hit hard.
Vintners in South Africa, France, Australia, California and more find
themselves grappling with the effects of climate change, the
reported, as a tiny swing in temperatures can change the sugar, acid
and tannin content for some grape varieties, making it difficult for
wineries to replicate batches produced in the past.
Spanish brand Familia Torres, which owns wineries in California and
Chile, has seen how a mere rise of 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit over 40 years
has resulted in harvests that are now about 10 days earlier than 20
years ago, company president Miguel A. Torres told the Associated Press.
South Africa, the world's seventh-largest producer of wine, has been hurt by drought and a
water crisis and will likely see wine production dip more than 20 percent this year, according to AFP.
On the flip side, the effects of climate change have been good news for
some Oregon vineyards, where increasingly milder temperatures have
become more suitable to grow grapes for pinot noir.
Now, "we're in the sweet spot," Greg Jones, a climate change and wine
expert based in McMinnville, Oregon, told the Associated Press. However,
if climate trends continue, Oregon's wine could also fall victim to the
same consequences faced by other wineries around the world.
Global Wine Index found that some of the world's finest grapes are
unlikely to survive due to natural disasters, rising temperatures and
other climate change factors. The Mendoza region—Argentina's Malbec wine
country—was ranked as the most at-risk. It was followed by the Kakheti
and Racha regions in Georgia, the southern Cahul region in Moldova,
northwestern Slovenia in fourth place, and tied for fifth are the
Yaraqui Valley in Ecuador and Nagano, Japan.