Michel Baldassini: “The whole point of drafting an action plan to combat vine die-back is to implement it!”

Tuesday January 12 2016 by Vitisphere

One year ago, in December 2014, the French wine industry announced it would be launching a nationwide initiative to combat grapevine trunk diseases. The announcement was followed last July by a review of current understanding and experience of vine die-back, conducted by analysts Bipe. Funded by the national appellations board CNIV, the review is designed as a springboard so that concrete measures can be taken. “Today, our plan of action is nearly complete and will revolve around three main pillars: research, plant material and wine growers”, announced Michel Baldassini who has been tasked with industry coordination at CNIV. “After defining our objectives and courses of action, we now need to define funding. It will need to be commensurate with the challenges we face because the whole point of drafting an action plan is to implement it!” The roadmap will be presented on April 7, 2016. “The document aims to provide guidelines for calls for projects over the coming decade”, explains CNIV, which has revealed four main lines of research: “The fight against the most significant pathogens in vine die-back; the physiological instruments that have an impact on productivity levels and/or longevity; better control over production of vines and their introduction into vineyards; the socio-economic challenges and levers”.

Vine die-back, which includes diseases such as black dead arm, esca and Eutypa die-back reduces French wine production on average by 4.6 hectolitres per hectare per year according to CNIV. A parliamentary report by MPs Catherine Quéré and Jean-Marie Sermier estimates that 1 billion euros in turnover are lost every year due to the diseases.


[Source: Vitisphere; Photo: BIVB]


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