The Scotsman – Grapes of wrath for French vineyards as millions of bottles are destroyed

MORE than eight million litres of this season’s production of Beaujolais wine is being turned into near-pure alcohol for use in disinfectants, cleaning products or fuel additives, as French vineyards face up to a massive overproduction crisis.

A chronic wine glut, falling domestic consumption and fierce overseas competition have converged to create a wine crisis on an unprecedented scale. With “lakes” of unsold wine threatening to undermine prices, the European Union has resorted to paying vintners to destroy some of their stock each year, distilling billions of bottles of perfectly drinkable wine into pure alcohol.

Curtsy: Tim Blair, who’s been on about the same problem in Oz.

Note how they’d rather destroy the stuff than drop the prices a little. Sigh.