Giboulot fined €500 for not spraying
7th April, 2014 by Rupert Millar
Burgundian winemaker Emmanuel Giboulot has been fined €500 for refusing to spray his vines against the leaf-hopper virus.
According to thelocal.fr, Giboulot (pictured) was sentenced today (Monday 7 April) at a court in Dijon. Taken to court by the French Ministry of Agriculture for not spraying pesticides on his vines, he had been facing a maximum fine of €300,000 and six months in prison.
His refusal to spray to protect against a disease known as flavesence dorée, which is spread by leaf hopper insects, was likened to “refusing a mandatory vaccination” by local authorities.
As a biodynamic producer Giboulot refused to comply with the ministry of agriculture’s order to spray against the disease-carrying insects when a small outbreak of flavesence dorée was discovered in the south of the region in summer last year.
He appeared in court in late February and was immediately championed by local groups and even Greenpeace.
Flavesence dorée first surfaced in France in Armagnac in 1949 and has since spread to every vineyard region save the Jura, Alsace and Champagne. There is no known treatment for it save killing the carriers with pesticides and all infected plants have to be uprooted and burned.