Champagne Announces 2018 Harvest Kickoff
September 05, 2018
WASHINGTON – The Champagne region of France has announced the start dates for the 2018 harvest, with several villages commencing harvest gradually. The start dates vary by each village and grape varietal, ensuring that every plot is picked at the optimal ripeness. Every year, all the grapes are handpicked—part of the Champagne appellation’s strict regulations and one of the key steps to producing the unique, high-quality sparkling wine that comes only from Champagne, France.
Only grapes from specific, delineated plots in the appellation can be used to produce Champagne. Located 90 miles northeast of Paris, the region covers fewer than 80,000 acres. From growing grapes to blending wines, the winemaking process is a carefully orchestrated system of adjustments that all adds up to make the wines of Champagne.
“Every year, the growers in the Champagne region of France rely on the unique climate and geography of the region’s land to determine the best dates for a successful harvest,” said Jennifer Hall, director of the Champagne Bureau, USA. “The careful coordination of harvest across the entire Champagne region demonstrates its commitment to creating quality wine and protecting the unique terroir of Champagne.”
This is the fifth time in the past 15 years that the harvest has begun in August, due to an unusually wet winter and warm spring. Global warming is a reality that Champagne growers and houses increasingly must take into account. As such, Champagne is committed to sustainable development and has sought to do its part to reduce environmental impact.
In 2003, Champagne was the first-ever wine region to commission a carbon footprint audit, leading to a multifaceted campaign focused on reducing Champagne’s carbon footprint by 25 percent by 2020 and 75 percent by 2050. Additionally, in 2015 the Comité Champagne launched an environmental certification for wine growers to demonstrate their environmental stewardship and step up their long-held commitment to protecting Champagne.
The Champagne appellation is uniquely situated to confront climate change because the entire region — from growers to houses to suppliers — understands the importance of working together to respond to the changes taking place in the world while maintaining its commitment to quality.
About The Champagne Bureau, USA
The Champagne Bureau, USA, is the official U.S. representative of the Comité Champagne, a trade association which represents the grape growers and houses of Champagne, France. The Bureau works to educate U.S. consumers about the uniqueness of the wines of Champagne and expand their understanding of the need to protect the Champagne name. For more information, visit us online at http://www.champagne.com. Follow us on Twitter at @ChampagneBureau.