France declares ‘wine war’ on Spain

Spanish wine producers and government demand answers

Foreign minister José Manuel García-Margallo summoned the French ambassador Photo: EFE

Spain’s wine producers have reacted angrily to news that French farmers have hijacked their tankers and emptied them onto the roads (CDSN last week). Reports say that French police stood by and watched as 100 farmers stopped five tankers last week, demanded the keys and allowed thousand of litres of wine, equivalent to 90,000 bottles, to drain away.

The confrontation at the first French toll stop on the A-9 northbound was a protest by French producers who claim that Spain is flooding the market with cheap wines, including some which has been topped-up with wine from South America. They say their livelihoods are under threat and the action taken was because they have been driven to despair by “unfair competition”.

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