A long-term drought in Rome, Italy, continues to affect winegrape growers among other agricultural products. Some 60% of farmland is threatened by the drought, so the Ministry of Agriculture announced on Friday it was dedicating €700 million to strengthen and boost the efficiency of the country’s irrigation systems.
Rice farmers are experimenting with terroir-based and varietal rice wines, mirroring classifications and marketing messages of the wine industry, to appeal buyers familiar with these concepts in foreign markets. Japan set goals to export sake worth 60 billion yen by 2020.
Spanish wine group Araex will create an organic wine with French consultant Michel Rolland. Araex forecasts a huge increase in demand for organic products, especially in U.S. markets.
Recent legislation passed in Oklahoma, Colorado, and Kansas will allow the sale of stronger beer in grocery stores, making Utah and Minnesota the remaining states with 3.2 ABV limits on beer sales in grocery and convenience stores.