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Organic age split

Published:  23 July, 2008

Young people are far more receptive to organic wine, according to the director of Millsime Bio, the organic wine fair held in France last week.

Thierry Duchenne, director of both Millsime Bio and the Association Interprofessionelle des Vins Biologiques du Languedoc-Roussillon (AIVB-LR), said that wine drinkers over the age of 50 perceive organic wine as a poor-quality product. He said: Regarding the perception of organic wine, there is an age split: the young are sympathetic, while those above 50 associate it with badly made wine.'

He added that the demand for organic wine in France still lags behind that of organic wine in a number of European countries: The 1990s were the golden years for French organic wines,' said Duchenne. Lately, competition from Australia allied with the drop of consumption in France has made things more difficult.'

The fair, now in its 14th year, attracted around 700 visitors, up by about 10% on last year. Of these, it is estimated that around 300 were buyers.

Although French exhibitors dominated (83% of the 237 present), there were 19 from Spain, 17 from Italy, and one each from Argentina, Portugal and Switzerland.

Helen McEvoy, wine buyer for the Thresher Group, said: Organic wine is increasing in popularity, with people seeing

it as a slightly healthier alternative. The good wines were very good, but there are still a large number of producers who need to improve their winemaking techniques. Often the corks used were poor quality.'