Wine has been called a “canary in the coal mine” as a harbinger of things good and bad.
A recent report in Nature (20/27 December 2012/vol 492) by Jamie Goode points out several interesting developments. Most noticeably, Europe, which accounts for 60% of the world-wide wine production, was severely impacted by the 2012 climate conditions. An extremely dry condition in Southern France and an unusually cold condition in northern France had drastically effected production: Champagne production was down 40%, Loire Valley 50% and overall in France a 20% drop in production. Italy suffered a
smaller (7%) reduction but the implications for the wine economy in the impacted regions is serious.