French MEP Éric Andrieu advocates de-alcoholised wine, ingredients labelling and planting authorisations

Monday October 26 2020 by Vitisphere

 “Vines are perennial plants and they require a clear roadmap”, stresses Languedoc MEP Eric Andrieu. “Vines are perennial plants and they require a clear roadmap”, stresses Languedoc MEP Eric Andrieu. - Photo credit : Permanence d'Éric Andrieu

The CAP discussions starting at the European Parliament have numerous consequences for the wine industry…

Éric Andrieu: The main change for the industry is an extension to the end date for planting authorisations, from 2030 to 2050. Vines are perennial plants and they require a clear roadmap, especially in times of crisis.

In your report, you also suggest broadening the definition of wine, so that de-alcoholised wines under 8.5% ABV can be called wine.

I introduced the idea, which has not been an easy topic for the [wine] industry. You have to look at things objectively: demand is changing. Wine is increasingly being drunk as an aperitif, in styles that have lower alcohol content. At the moment, only drinks with 8.5% ABV and upwards can be called wine. If we refuse to accept change, the (wine) industry could miss out on a potential market.

My conclusion is that de-alcoholised wines between 0.5 and 8.5% ABV should stay in the wine category (outside PDO and PGI). Some regions are considering vine removals - we should be heading towards greater diversification and production of a broader range of products.

Another important change is that calorie and ingredients labelling will become mandatory on bottles of wine...

The rationale is the same. Today’s consumer needs to know the ingredients that go into what they eat and drink. At the start [of discussions], the [wine] sector was uptight, but we have reached a good compromise. The answer is to provide calorie information on the label, with a symbol that allows energy value to be specified as a nutrition statement. Producers will provide ingredient information, either on the label or in a digitised format using a QR Code.

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