One Crémant’s loss is another one’s gain

Friday September 22 2017 by Vitisphere

Last year we harvested 295,000 hl of Crémant d’Alsace. This year, we’ll be lucky if we reach 230,000 hl”, announced Hervé Schwendenmann, chairman of the Crémant d’Alsace producers’ organisation. With harvesting in the region now over, it has been confirmed that volumes were undermined by frost in April and drought, both of which have caused a 22% shortfall this year.

Despite this, Crémant output fared slightly better than the region as a whole, due to category adjustments that affected still wines. Alsace is expecting to harvest 850,000 hl, down 28% on 2016. Many producers have chosen to supply growth markets or were enticed by high prices for Crémant must which have risen from 2.2 euros/litre this time last year to €3/litre. Even this won’t be enough though: “If we manage to sustain our markets, it will be a huge achievement”, admitted Schwendenmann.

In Bordeaux too, “producers rallied round Crémant to ensure supplies to a growth market”, stressed Dominique Furlan, chairman of Crémant de Bordeaux and of the Vignerons de Saint Pey de Génissac. “We should produce between 40,000 and 45,000 hl compared with 65,000 hl last year”.

Stability in Burgundy and the Loire Valley

Conversely, Crémant production in Burgundy and the Loire Valley should be stable. “Conditions were more favourable than in 2016”, summed up Pierre du Couëdic, director of the Crémant de Bourgogne producers’ organisation. “We should harvest 150,000 hl, on a par with last year”.

The same cautious optimism was shown in Anjou-Saumur, the home of Crémant de Loire, where volumes are expected to be in the range of 126,000 hl as in 2016. 

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