History and Influencers
The history of French wine spans over a period of more than 2600 years. The Romans had the biggest influence on the popularity of French wine. They encouraged the widespread planting of vines in regions such as Alsace, Champagne, Loire Valley, Bordeaux and Rhone. These areas became to be famously known as the wine regions. The French wine industry also received a significant amount of influence from the Dutch traders as well as the lucrative English market which had commercial interests in the industry (Philips 70).
France is revered for the quality, quantity and variety of the wine that it produces. Here are some of the interesting facts about the French wine industry;
-France has the highest per capita wine consumption in the world.
-In 2014, France was ranked as the number one producer of wine in the world (Journo).
-Wine has been in production in France since 600BC.
-Approximately 25-30% of France’s vines come from Languedoc-Roussillon.
Traditionally, wine drinking has been deemed as a source of pride among the French people. It is essentially a part of what it means to be French. Wine is frequently described as a national product (Schofield). However, this culture is traditionally being challenged by the political and social forces that have significantly transformed the consumption patterns (Demossier 2).
France has numerous wine-producing regions that are regulated by the Intitut National des Appellations d’Origine. In regards to the individual regions that produce wine, every appellation has to be defined by the Intitut. Some of the major production areas include; Beaujolais, Bordeaux, Alsace, Brittany, Burgundy, Champagne, Corsica, Jura, Ile de France, Loire, Languedoc-Roussillon, Picardy, Normandy, Rhone, Provence, South West France, Savoy.
Demossier, Marion. Wine Drinking Culture in France: A National Myth or a Modern Passion? Cardiff: University of Wales Press, 2010. Print.
Journo, Laurent. Wine Annual Report and Statistics. 7 Jul. 2015. Web. 21 Jan. 2016.
Philips, Rod. A Short History of Wine. New York: Harper Perennial, 2002. Print.
Schofield, Hugh. Why are the French drinking less wine? 26 Mar. 2013. Web. 21 Jan. 2016.