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Wine is an alcoholic beverage made from fermented grapes. The natural sugar of grapes gets converted in to ethanol and carbon dioxide, which is the result of fermentation. The alcoholic concentration in wine ranges from 5.5%-15%. Also, there are mainly two types of wine, namely the red wine and white wine. Sometimes rose wine is also categorized as the third category; but not in demand as compared to the red wine.
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According to the data, it is estimated that France produces up to 60 million hectoliters of wine per year, which is packed in around 8 million bottles. These bottles are then utilized in every occasion around the corner of the world.
France Wine Market
As such, there are many French winemakers or producers, but the tops one always rule the market. thus, here’s a list of France top winemakers who are not only producing the finest wines but are also in demand because of their classic and exotic taste that pleases the customers, in every aspect.
- Château Lagrange: it is also the name of the red wine, which is produced in the winery Bordeaux region, in France. It is one of the oldest wine producers, which produces 3 types of wines, namely, Grand Vin, Les Fiefs de Lagrange and Les Arums de Lagrange. The last one is the white wine which is produced by the same company but in small quantities. The company utilizes the vineyard which is spread over 110 hectares of area.
- Château Gruaud- Larose: this wine is also produced in the winery of Saint Julien appellation, in the Bordeaux region of France. The company owns a vineyard of 82 hectares.
- Château Margaux: the estate of the company is situated in the commune of Margaux on the left bank of Garonne in the Medoc region. The company also produces white wine, which is named as Pavillon Blanc du Château Margaux and Pavillon Rouge du Château Margaux. The domain of this wine is extending up to 262 hectares, out of which 87 hectares are entitled to Margaux AOC declaration.
- Château Léoville- Las Cases: it is another very famous wine from Bordeaux region of France, which produces quality wine. It is also the name of the red wine that is being produced by this property. The company also produces with a separate name as Clos du Marquis. The company owns 97 hectares of vineyard area for its production.
- Château Pichon Longueville Comtesse de Lalande: it is also known as Pichon Lalande or Pichon Comtesse. It is a winery in Pauillac appellation of the Bordeaux region of France. The wine is also named as per the area. The second wine produced by this company is available by the name Reserve de la Comtesse.
- Pétrus: it is another Bordeaux wine estate, which is located in Pomerol appellation, near the eastern border to Saint Emilion. It is widely accepted as the outstanding wine of the appellation and accounts to the most expensive wines in the world. The company has 11.4 hectares of vineyards that produce enough wine for consumption and distribution.
- Château Duhart-Milon: it was previously known as the Château Duhart Milon Rothschild. The wine produced by this company is classified under the Quatrièmes Crus Classés in the Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855. The Château has 175 acres of area, which is cultivated with different varieties of grapes. The second wine produced by this company is labeled as Moulin de Duhart.
- Château Haut-Batailley: this company owns 22 hectares of area which is utilized for the plantation of grapes for wine production. This wine is also placed in the Bordeaux Wine Official Classification of 1855. It is also produced in the Paulliac appellation of the Bordeaux region.
Growth factors of France Wine Market
There are numerous factors that are essential during the plantation of grapes, which are thus responsible for the quality of wine, as grapes are the primary and essential raw material required for the production of wine. Some of them are listed below:
- Location: grape is basically a temperate zone fruit, but the fruit is capable of growing in the semi-tropical regions too. Hence, the hillside or the slope area is preferred over the plains areas for grapes cultivation. Also, the slopes or the slants do not retain excess moisture in the soil, as the water gets drained down.
- Climate: it plays a major role in the cultivation of grapevine plantation. Each and every species of grape has its own ideal environment and growing conditions, which vary from country to country. The basic requirement of grapevine is 1300-1500 hours of sunshine and approximate 690 mm of rainfall, round the year to produce a grapevine quality that is suitable for winemaking process. Ideal temperature in summer should be 22° C, which enables the fruit to ripe. Whereas for winters, it should be around 3° C, which will accelerate its growth rate and will allow the grapevine to enter the resting phase. Caution is, if the temperature falls below that, and then there are chances that the vine or the plantation may be injured. Humidity also plays an important role, and thus, 60% to 80% humidity is also categorized in the ideal growth of the grapes.
- Soil: the quality of soil also plays major role in the grapevine production, as it provides nourishment to the plant with the help of the root system. The root system absorbs all the essential minerals and other components from the soil and utilizes it in the normal growth and functioning of the plant. The most favorable soil conditions include the aeration, moderate facilities, good drainage system, and loose texture of the soil. Also, the ideal soil should also have the required amount of calcium, potassium, iron, magnesium and other important minerals.
- Grape species: all the grapes are different from each other in terms of color, size and shape. However, a good wine has balanced juice content along with the extinct aroma and required flavor. Hence the plantation should be cared, so as to maintain it disease free and disease resistant for the best quality wine.
- Diseases: grapes are very susceptible to the microbial growth and thus it’s very important to make them free from Odium, frost, hail, different kind of mildews, along with phylloxera, plant virus and Coulure.
- Human factor: it is also very essential for the growth of grapes, to make a perfect wine out of it and thus the factors like irrigation practices, the timing of treatments plays a major role. Not only this, the use and limit if fertilizers, use of rootstocks and pruning practices also lays hazardous impacts on the quality of grapevine, which will, in turn, be responsible for the wine quality.
France Wine Market Trends
The France wine market is tightly regulated by EU and AOC rules. Also, France is currently holding the second position in the production of wine. France wine market is expected to decline by 8-10% in the current year. Thus the overall production of wine is estimated to be 44.1 million hectoliters this year. This downfall in the wine production is due to the spring hit frost in some viticulture areas.
Due to this, the wine consumption in France is also estimated to be declining at the rate of 1.2%every year. On an average, the sales of the wine industry in France have also declined by 8.6%, globally. So the France export ratio was estimated to be of 28.8% of the total wine export, the whose estimated cost was around us $9.2 billion. Lastly, the price for bulk wine in France is also raised from June 2014 till Feb 2016, from 1.04 euro per liter to 1.18 euro per liter.
France Wine Market is expected to grow at a 5.8% CAGR during the forecast period 2018 – 2023. A report is available on Logicresearch.net
With the passage of time, the technology is also getting advanced day by day. Hence this is also a boon to the French wine industry, as it saves the grape plantation and thus makes it fit for the grape vine plantation. Out of which, following are the major ones. Starting from the history to the modern era following changes has taken place:
- The chemicals in disguise: one of the farmer in France, accidently invented the ‘Bordeaux mix’. This is the mixture of the copper sulfate and hydrated lime, which is sprayed all over the plantation and thus saves the grapes. This mixture also plays the role of an effective fungicide, which is now also being used in saving the tomato and potato cultivation.
- Dietary compliment: A team of researchers are now working with the neurobiologists to understand the fascination need of the excess calorie consumption in the diet and also to formulate the best diet design that fits the humans around the globe. Gaining knowledge about human perception and flavor preferences also plays an important role.
- Sensors in demand: sensors are widely used in the grape vines, which are built with the help of the scientific tools that judges the right proportion of the maturity levels of individual plants and thus collects the data, and helps in keeping track of the growth in the right direction. The sensors work with the help of the solar energy and thus transmit the data of growth at equal intervals.
- Machine harvesting v/s hand harvesting: the use and demand of machines, for harvesting the grapevine, is rapidly increasing with time. Their demand is increasing because of their efficiency and mechanism. They are exclusively designed to harvest more quickly and efficiently, with minimal loss and damage to the grapes. Thus, they have dramatically reduced the labor cost at the same time. The bulk wine producers have already replaced the machinery system of harvesting over the manual process, over a decade.
- Sorters in demand: after the harvesting of grapes, the collected berries are placed in the sorter, which sorts the grapes as per the quality. The machine passes forwards the superior quality grapes and rejects the inferior quality grapes, along with the damaged and shriveled berries. The machine makes use of the optical sensors along with the halogen light and digital camera which captures the image and then responds to the acceptance or rejection of the berries.
- Accelerated aging: traditionally, the juice or the wines was placed in the oak barrels for the aging process, which was not only time to consume but it was also very expensive in nature and thus this technique is replaced with sur lie, micro-oxygenation and use of wood fragments; where the wood chips are placed in the aging tanks to enhance the flavor and aging process. On the other hand, the micro-oxygenation process accelerates the aging process of time and saves the economy at the same time. It also lays positive effects on the overall quality of wine too.
- Bubble tag: as the latest technique, and to stop the fraud of the fine wine and its quality, the winemakers have initiated the application of the bubble tag or the proof tag. A proof tag ensures the consumers with its authenticity. It has a unique serial number and a unique pattern of bubbles engraved in polymers, which can never be modified, even by the manufacturer. Thus proves to be the authentic winery tool.
- Packaging innovation: as such, screw caps led to better quality and longevity but the adventure of popping the cork in the air also plays an important role during the packing of wine. Under the French law, the wine closures are only permitted with the natural corks. Thus, not much innovation has been reported in this category.
France Wine Market Overview
The process of manufacturing wine is known as vinification or winemaking. The science of wine and winemaking is also termed as oenology, whereas the person making wine is called as winemaker or vintner. The process starts with the selection of right quality grapes and ends up with the bottling of the finished wine. Mostly the wine is made from grapes, but the wine made from honey is known as mead, where honey is the major and basic ingredient apart from water.
Winemaking can be further divided into two broad categories, namely the still wine production, which is manufactured without carbonation, and sparkling wine production, which involves the process of carbonation, either naturally or manually with the help of an injection.