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While the attention of the news returns to be swallowed up almost entirely by the fourth wave of Covid-19 and by the “Omicron variant”, the world of production and consumption of all goods is counting with the very strong increase in costs, which slows down the consumption, reduces the margins of companies and the purchasing power of consumers. And it also applies to wine, where “there is no sign of diminishing the impact of the increase in production costs on the sector, not only in Italy, but also in France and Spain, the other two main European producing countries. In Italy, the increases in the third quarter of 2021 reached the range of + 8/12%, with a peak of + 24.4% recorded by the surge in energy costs “. To say the wine cooperatives of France, Italy and Spain, which represent over 50% of the wine production of the European Union, in a joint note that analyzes the market situation of the three countries. What is worrying are the supply difficulties recorded in many cases by companies, also forced to face transport costs which have even doubled, especially abroad, with the consequence of serious delays in the delivery of products, which often end up turning into additional costs .
“The increase in the cost of raw materials has a negative impact along the entire supply chain”, comments Luca Rigotti, Coordinator of the Wine Sector of Alleanza Agroalimentari Cooperatives, who is also at the top of the Copa-Cogeca Wine Working Group (as well as president of the Trentino Mezzacorona cooperative, ed.). “The increases range from the cost of electricity to that of fertilizers, but the prices of glass, boxes, packaging and building materials are also increasing. At the moment, however, wine prices have not increased to the point of being able to absorb the increase in costs, which remains mainly borne by the producers ”. The main consequence is that in order to cope with the increases, the cooperatives of France, Spain and Italy explain, companies are stopping or postponing their modernization plans and are in fact unable to plan and implement new investments, especially those that should take up the challenge of the ecological transition of the European wine sector indicated by the “Farm to Fork” strategy.
To complete the current market situation, which is fairly homogeneous in the three countries, there are positive signs coming from an increase in sales prices (caused by a harvest lower than the average of recent years) and an increase in exports, also supported by the end of US tariffs. The main critical issues come not only from the increase in production costs, but also from the fear of a possible restoration of restrictions in the Horeca channel due to the persistence of the Covid-19 pandemic, which would end up having a destabilizing effect and a heavy impact on European wine consumption. “Even in these difficult situations it is necessary to maintain market stability, guaranteeing customers a certain continuity of the offer. In this situation – concludes Rigotti – even the limits imposed by the Farm to Fork could potentially contribute, in the medium term, to a reduction in European production, with the inevitable consequence that the decline in production translates into an increase in imports from outside the EU ” .

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Marco Ribaudo

Marco Ribaudo

For the love of food and wine! Marco Ribaudo, Certified Sommelier, with 25 years in the food and beverage industry now invites you to join him in his latest adventure, the opening of la Cucina del Vino to share his culture and passion for creating unforgettable memories around the table.

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