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Review of Burgundy vineyard boundaries questioned by producers

By Vitisphere June 19, 2019
Review of Burgundy vineyard boundaries questioned by producers
Bruno Verret has represented the Burgundy appellation producers’ organisation since April 2019. - crédit photo : DR

or the Burgundy appellation producers’ organisation, the national institute for controlled appellations (INAO) is trying to force through its project to demarcate the Burgundy (Bourgogne) appellation area. The organisation is contesting the substance of the case, and believes that the criteria adopted, which were presented to it in November 2018, do not respect the foundations of an appellation, such as the history and “significant” customs of Burgundy wine production over time. For example, the enquiry board has reportedly only chosen an uninterrupted production period of eight years to meet the requirements of customary practice.

An institute guided by fear

A number of Burgundy localities such as Dijon would thus be removed from the production area, while others, located in Beaujolais, “with no historical relationship with Burgundy and its quality products built up over the decades”, would be allowed in. “This is outrageous and unacceptable: over 10 years, the entire aspect of the appellation would change and the people who have constructed it would be excluded”, said Bruno Verret, the organisation’s annoyed chairman.

In summary, INAO is reportedly considering minimising human input in favour of natural factors, i.e. soils and climates. “Is the Burgundy appellation simply about growing Pinot noir or Chardonnay in a temperate climate on clayey limestone soils?” asked the organisation. For Burgundians, this is not just carelessness - they feel that the new boundary review offers a way for INAO to avoid possible future conflicts or appeals. “We are suffering the unfortunate consequences of political and legal handling of the project, chosen by INAO to avoid being sued”, continued Verret.


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