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Shortfall of 2012 harvest sparks price hikes in Burgundy

Bourgogne Aujourd’hui recounts that conversations in Burgundy have revolved around wine prices ever since the remaining grapes were picked last autumn. Price increases have so far been confined to transactions between growers and négociants, with bulk wine trading at levels 8% to 27% higher depending upon appellation. Only Chablis, they report, shows a more modest increase of 5%. The publication explains that prices of the top level of Burgundy – premiers and grands crus as well as some AOC villages – have increased in a “spectacular manner” in recent years; the same is not true of regional appellations. The 2012 vintage, however, may be an historic juncture. They quote Louis-Fabrice Latour as saying it is important to break through the “psychological barrier of 10 euros, 10 pounds or 10 dollars for the consumer.” Latour also indicates that the response from the trade so far is “we’ll see what the market will decide.” He suggests the ultimate increase may be around 15% for red wines and will affect stocks of 2011 as well. Michel Barraud, president of a Mâconnais cave, believes the price hikes of white wines will be more moderate.

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