After the quake, Chile’s wineries assess damage

Along with just about everyone else in Chile , those involved with the country’s wine industry were getting a sense of the damage from Saturday’s massive earthquake, and at this point it seems to considerable, just as Chile is about to begin the 2010 harvest.

James Molesworth of Wine Spectator reports that wineries in the  Maule and Curico valleys near the epicenter were hard hit, with damage as well further north in the Maipo and Rapel valleys. To put in perspective what’s at stake here, Chile’s wine exports exceeded $1 billion last year, The New York Times noted in its coverage of the quake.

Concha y Toro, Chile’s largest producer and exporter, has vineyards in Maule, Curico, Maipo and throughout the country’s large wine-growing region. Ed Barden, the New World portfolio director for Banfi Vintners, Concha y Toro’s U.S. importer, told me the company is assessing the damage to its facilities, a process that will take two or three days.

1 comment:

  1. I sell Chilean wine on behalf of Global Vineyards, a specialist South American importer in Berkeley and our concern is twofold. One, that not only have some of the vineyards lost stock, not all but many have some significant losses of bottle and vat stock; and two, the harvest is not far off and both equipment and workers will now be in very short supply. The impact of this quake on Chile's wine exports may be felt for many years. The good news from our contacts is that with one exception no wineries incurred loss of life due to the fortunate timing of a Saturday early morning.