December 19, 2016 / 4:58 PM / 8 months ago

Bordeaux wine output seen at 7-year high

Bordeaux, France, Dec 19 (Reuters) - Bordeaux wine output should reach a seven-year top this year, the head of producers group CIVB said on Monday, confirming that the region had escaped severe weather hiccups that slashed output in many other large producing regions in France.

"We are extremely pleased today about the 2016 harvest, mainly for its quality but also for the yields, more generous, which will bring us near a total output of 5.7 million hectolitres of AOP wine, something we had not seen since 2009," CIVB Chairman Allan Sichel told reporters.

So-called AOP wines carry a protected designation of origin. They amount to around 95 percent of all wine produced in the region.

The rise in output is good news for producers, still reeling from a terrible year in 2013 when output fell to 3.84 millions hectolitres, the lowest since 1991.

Bordeaux, where harvesting is over since end-October, is one of the sole regions in France, along with Alsace, which saw its output rise this year thanks to beneficial weather conditions.

In contrast, heavy spring rain, followed by a hot and dry summer and wet conditions in September severely hurt vines and output in many other regions including Champagne, Val-de-Loire and Burgundy.

As of early November the farm ministry estimated the total French wine output down 10 percent on year.

The fall in French output, combined with lower production in South America, was expected to push worldwide wine production to its lowest since 2012, wine body OIV estimated in October. (Reporting by Claude Canellas, writing by Sybille de La Hamaide; editing by John Irish)

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