Sector of Loire Valley Expects Very Low Vine Production

    Many of



Coast vineyards were negatively impacted by frost this spring, as we reported yesterday here on


     Frost also did some damage in

France, according to Decanter.


     The Muscadet vineyards at the western end of the


Valley have had their potential 2008 harvest reduced by half following a severe spring frost there.


     Although reports of the damage caused by the frost varied, initial fears that around half of the vintage had been wiped out have now been confirmed.


     Elodie Besseas, of the regional wine trade group Interloire, said vines around Bouaye, southwest of

Nantes, were so badly hit, “the loss is up to 100 percent.”


     “At the moment, we are looking at a 50 percent loss overall,” Besseas, who is technical expert for the


Valley vineyards from

Nantes to

Blois, told “There are considerable variations from sector to sector. This month, once the flowering is over, we will be able to produce a final estimate of the size of the 2008 Muscadet vintage.”


     Producers echoed Besseas’ findings.


     “This is the worst frost since 1991,” Jerome Choblet of Domaine des Herbauges said. “The damage to the buds is between 60 and 80 percent. Because the frost occurred much earlier than in 1991, we hope that the second-generation buds will develop well and make up a lot of the deficit.”


     Muscadet has already suffered from small harvests in both 2007 and 2006. Last year’s harvest was down by 16 percent due to frost and mildew.


     “We have no stock,” said Choblet.


     Besseas also said that there had been some frost damage farther up the valley in

Anjou, which includes the appellations of Savennieres, Coteaux du Layon and Saumur-Champigny. Although the damage is expected to be much less than that in Muscadet, it will be some time before its extent is known.

Posted in Wine Region Profiles
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