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French wine producers to lose almost $2.4 bln in sales due to post-winter cold snap

Published: Updated:

At least a third of French wine production this year, representing almost two billion euros ($2.4 billion) in sales, will be lost due to a bout of unusually cold early spring weather, a federation said Wednesday.

National Federation of Agricultural Holders’ Unions (FNSEA) secretary general Jerome Despey told AFP that the estimate was made after consultations with all the players in the sector.

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The rare freezing temperatures that have caused some of the worst damage in decades to crops and vines struck across France earlier this month, with the consequences compounded by the fact the cold snap came after warm weather.

“This is probably the greatest agricultural catastrophe of the beginning of the 21st century,” Agriculture Minister Julien Denormandie said on Monday, adding that France has never seen such a frost wave in early spring.

The government is preparing an emergency package of measures.

Read more: French economy is weathering April COVID-19 lockdown better than last year’s