France reclaims title as world’s largest wine maker

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French Wine

France has reclaimed its crown as world’s biggest wine producer after a poor 2014 harvest saw Italy’s wine production plunge 15 percent.

French vignerons will produce around 46.2 million hectolitres of wine, about 6.16 billion bottles, this year, up 10 percent from a year earlier. Italy, whose winemakers have out-produced France’s for the last two years, will produce 44.4 million hectolitres of wine in 2014, according to figures released Thursday by the Paris-based International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV).

Total world wine production is set to fall 6 percent this year to 271 million hectolitres. Spain, which leapfrogged France into second place in 2013, will see its wine production fall 19 percent this year to 37 million hectolitres, the organization said.

In the United States, the world’s fourth-largest wine maker, output fell four percent to 22.5 million hectolitres compared to last year after an earthquake in August and poor weather in September in California, OIV said.

Large producers Bulgaria and Romania saw their output plunge by 30 percent and 20 percent year-on-year respectively, having suffered particularly adverse weather conditions.

The OIV said total global wine production fell 6 percent to 271 million hectolitres in 2014 compared to 2013.

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