Bordeaux storm far worse than thought

The damage to vineyards in Bordeaux from a 10-minute hailstorm last Friday is now thought to be in the region of 20,000 hectares.

Hail damage to grapes in the storm. Credit: Gavin Quinney

Hail damage to grapes in Entre-deux-Mers after Friday’s storm. Credit: Gavin Quinney

Initial reports put the damage at 5,000 hectares, but AFP now reports that, after an official assessment, Gironde’s Chamber of Agriculture revealed it to be far worse than initially thought.

Some 7,000 hectares of vines in Entre-deux-Mers have been stripped of their entire crop, with Bernard Farges, president of the CIVB, describing the storm as “brutal” and “intense”.

According to the CIVB, only around 20% of the producers affected are insured, and those who aren’t look set to loose hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Stéphane Defraine, president of the Entre-deux-Mers Winegrowers Union, believes the storm has cost local growers in the region of £17m.

AFP reports that around 200,000 hectolitres of wine has been lost through the storm in what was already shaping up to be a smaller crop than 2012 in Bordeaux.

Château Bonnet, owned by André Lurton, lost virtually all of its 300 hectares to the storm, while Gavin Quinney of Château Bauduc lost “at least 50%” of his crop.

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