France reports sharp drop in wine, champagne sales – Yahoo! News

FILE - In this Nov. 20, 2008 file photo, a woman tastes the 2008 edition of a AP – FILE – In this Nov. 20, 2008 file photo, a woman tastes the 2008 edition of a Beaujolais Nouveau wine …

By SCOTT SAYARE, Associated Press Writer Scott Sayare, Associated Press Writer 2 hrs 32 mins ago

PARIS – As wallets grew thinner around the world, fans of Bordeaux, Burgundy and Champagne cut back heavily on their purchases of French wine in 2008, according to French government statistics released Tuesday.

French households drank almost 10 percent less wine last year than in 2007, and exports by French vintners sank 15 percent by volume and almost 30 percent by value in the first quarter of 2009, the agriculture ministry reported.

“It’s a phenomenon of the current economic situation, so we need to be prudent and not sound the alarm,” said Xavier de Volontat, who heads an association of French vintners. “We’ll have to be prudent vis-a-vis our members in the months to come. It’s true that they’re being patient, but they have to be able to get by economically.”

France’s chateaux and vineyards have voiced concerns for their future after seeing orders plunge since the end of 2008.

The same problem here in the US and not much can be done. There is always overproduction worldwide and the products are created with greed in mind. When economies are good, they go like crazy generating too much profit. When economies are bad, the profit goes and the industry people have to pay personally. It is not food any more. It is an easy way to make a lot of money or not.

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