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New and better breeds to preserve Champagne



It is well known that climate change is a global phenomenon that affects every one of us, including our agricultural processes and therefore our precious wine. The industry has already suffered many consequences because of this environmental problem and will continue to do in the future. However, for our luck, many people, including scientists and farmers, are thinking in new ways to change the wine market, specifically of our beloved champagne, and have joined forces to achieve a significant result.

As published by the Vinetur, the National Institute of Agronomic Research (INRA) in collaboration with the French Institute of Vine and Wine of Montpellier, will develop a program that is scheduled for the next 15 years with the sole objective to create 4 to 5 new grape varieties that will be capable to adapt to the climate challenges that will come in the future.

"We work on the long term, and the fundamentals of the grape varieties of our denomination could definitely change", said Thibaut Le Mailloux of Champagne Committee, composed of the winegrowers and production houses of the region. "Research must absolutely start now because in 25 years it will be too late."

In 2015, the first breeds fertilized with grapes were ended. Last June, the second crossing experiment concluded. This hybridization process should result in 4,000 seeds that are intended to be cultivated within the next 6 years in various experimental plots in the region. It is estimated that by 2030, and after several tests, analysis and tastings, the French catalog will be able to annex from four to five new breeds and then inscribe them in the DO Champagne.

Scientists have a duty to monitor all these processes to preserve the typical characteristics of these wines. The primary objective is to preserve the style of a good champagne and all the tradition that this means.

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Comments New and better breeds to preserve Champagne

Champagne is creamy in texture and unwaveringly delicious. The effervescence is welcoming without being brash. It’s the obvious choice for special occasions and celebrations, but, at times, an expensive one.
Travis Chia Travis Chia 06/01/2017 at 09:24
While it is true that some French researchers and viticulturists are trying to come up with a new hybrid better adapted to a warmer climate I don't believe the French producers of Champagne will change what they do now. If ever there was a region more bound by both law and tradition I don't know of it. New grape varieties? Who will be the first to try them? I can't think of a producer that would break with tradition. In the time it takes for the climate to change there will be a whole new generation or two drinking the wine. I believe that consumer taste and preference will evolve as the climate does. God bless the Champenoise.
Thomas Kruse Thomas Kruse 09/01/2017 at 19:53

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