As France and Spain close their borders in a bid to slow the spread of the coronavirus, one thing is managing to slip through controls and that is French Sparkling Wine. In 2019, France exported almost five million bottles of the stuff to its neighbour Spain.
ONE quick look at the graph below verifies this, over €3.2 billion euros of wine was sold online from France up to March 2020 and this figure takes into account the Coronavirus crisis! As the lockdown is extended then wine consumption increases, it’s a win-win situation for wine producers.
France’s government ordered most businesses to close March 14. Groceries, pharmacies and gas stations were exempted; restaurants and bars were not. Officials had asked people to stay indoors a few days earlier, but warm weather brought thousands to Paris parks on Saturday. “We are just at the beginning of this crisis,” French President Emmanuel Macron said in an address to the nation. In spite of all our efforts to break it, this virus is continuing to propagate and to accelerate.”
Bordeaux vintners had already been dealing with the cancellation of their annual en primeur tastings. Now the region is turning all visitors away. “Our family, who is proud to be ambassador of l’art de vivre à la française, is seriously impacted,” said Florence Cathiard, co-owner of Château Smith-Haut-Lafitte and several other wineries. “Hotel, restaurants and spa closed, [wine] boutique closed. Only the people in the vineyard and in the cellars are working.”
One thing is for sure, everyone is hoping this nightmare will soon, before that happens,
à votre santé!