British Takeover? Is Britain About to Overtake France in Wine Production?
29th April 2016
As one of the largest wine producing regions in the world, France is well recognised for its contribution to the wine industry.
However, there are rumours that Britain is soon to steal the wine production crown from the French, and it is mainly due to a change of climate which is causing France to become too hot to produce flavourful wine; heat affects the ripening of the grapes and can drastically alter the sugar and acid balance within the product, changing both the flavour and the texture of the wine.
At the same time, Britain is set to become much warmer, with temperatures which are much more favourable for viticulture.
The Growth of British Wine
It is no secret that Britain is currently experiencing a fruitful increase in the production of wine; the weather is already transitioning into the perfect climate for grapevines to grow and produce delicious, flavourful wines.
Some areas of the country are proving to be more successful than others. In fact, the South East has been enjoying ideal conditions for producing sparkling wine. The cooler climate and chalky soil is not all that different to the Champagne region of Northern France and appears to enhance the quality of the grapes that are being grown there.
However, it’s not just the south that is experiencing these wine-friendly conditions; vineyards in the north of Yorkshire and Wales are also producing better-than-normal quality wine as the climate has slowly started to change.
It is understandable that France is likely to be very protective over the wine that is produced within their country, especially as they have been at the forefront of the industry for such a long time. However, it seems as though France is unfazed by the threat to one of their biggest exports.
In fact, Taittinger – one of the most well known names in French Champagne – recently invested in land over here in Britain, and is expected to start producing high quality English sparkling wine in the very near future; as soon as five years according to some.
Will This Change the Future of Wine Production?
Although it seems as though France is fighting a losing battle with the climate, it’s worth remembering that it takes much more than the climate to successfully produce flavourful, delicious wine.
From the ground in which the vines are planted to the different weather conditions they are subjected to, a wide range of factors affect the eventual flavour of the wine. Therefore, a changing climate doesn’t necessarily mean that Britain is sure to steal the wine production crown from France.
However, it is clear that we should expect to see even more delicious wines coming out of Britain very soon, particularly as the climate becomes increasingly favourable; what a wonderful addition to your wine cellar that will be!