“Crops destroyed 100%”: wine growers and arborists in the Tarn valley hit by frost

“Crops destroyed 100%”: wine growers and arborists in the Tarn valley hit by frost

Avec trois mois d’avance sur la normale, les vignes et vergers ont souffert du gel. Archives AD

Les températures nocturnes négatives enregistrées dans la vallée du Tarn mi-avril ont sérieusement compromis l’optimisme des arboriculteurs et viticulteurs de la zone.

Frost in 2017 and 2021, drought in 2022, mildew in 2023… The years follow one another and are similar for the Aveyron winegrowers surprised by the last episode of frost which put the vines on standby as well as the optimism of the operators .

To varying degrees, the five Aveyron appellations were affected by the frost episode of mid-April with in places, a thermometer showing 2 degrees below 0.&amp ;nbsp;Demoralizing for the profession which now hopes to see the second buds start again, after the shock suffered by the vine.

Although there is nothing exceptional about this period, the frost this year was more detrimental to the harvests. The fault lies in a relatively mild first quarter of 2024 and a particularly hot first half of April, with maximums close to, for example, 30°C on April 13 last year. Promoting the early development of vegetation and its vulnerability to climatic hazards.

"We had three weeks in advance so these four nights of frost were very detrimental for us, validates Ludovic Bouviala from the Vieux Noyer vineyard in Boyne who estimates having lost between 10 and 15 tonnes of grapes, including 50% of the estate's white plots.

"40 tons of fruit destroyed"

If on the Côtes de Millau side, we prefer to see the glass half full – "it could have been worse", confirms Ludovic Bouviala – this is not the case for arborists, producers of apples, peaches, apricots and plums in the valley who undoubtedly paid the heaviest price in the last frosts of an otherwise rather mild winter. With at the bottom of the valley, total losses as with Dorian Lauzun and Nicols Maury of the Gaec des Vergers de l’Aveyron.

With "100 % of the Mirabelle plum harvest" destroyed by frost, that's 40 tonnes less fruit for the Gaec which estimates its losses at nearly 75,000 euros. Ditto for Benoit Paulhac of Gaec des Vergers du Piedestal who farms 25 hectares of apricots, cherries, peaches and plums.

He confirms having to draw a line under 60 % of his annual harvest of mirabelle plums including 100 % of those he cultivates in the background  ;nbsp;valley. "When you think that there was almost no frost in January or February and that there are a few weeks more we had  30 or 35 degrees in the afternoon… This is unfortunate."

Scalded by the late reprisals of a mild winter, operators in the sector are not out of the woods. "Until mid-May, we will remain frankly tense", confirms Ludovic Bouviala. In the meantime, the unions are working to bring the file to the Departmental Directorate of Territories (DDT) with a view to triggering a compensation procedure in recognition of a natural calamity.

I subscribe to read more

Add a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

(function(d,s){d.getElementById("licnt2061").src= "https://counter.yadro.ru/hit?t44.6;r"+escape(d.referrer)+ ((typeof(s)=="undefined")?"":";s"+s.width+"*"+s.height+"*"+ (s.colorDepth?s.colorDepth:s.pixelDepth))+";u"+escape(d.URL)+ ";h"+escape(d.title.substring(0,150))+";"+Math.random()}) (document,screen)