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Now There's An Idea: Pay to Avoid Plonk

In this interesting tidbit (that I illegally scraped off of a random news site) it looks like the EU has taken an interest in improving the quality of its wine -- by paying growers. I guess that's one way to do it. Heck we've been paying people here in the States to not grow things at all, maybe this will work?

AP - BRUSSELS, Belgium

A fine wine improves with age, but not when you're cranking out the bottles so fast that the quality suffers.

That is what's prompting the European Union to set aside millions of dollars to encourage vineyards to improve their wines.

The EU is expressing concerns about a glut of low-quality wines, especially from France and Spain.

So the vineyards are being offered subsidies, to encourage them to rip out their old vines and plant better varieties of grapes.

It's hoped that with better crops, they can better compete with wine-making rivals in Chile, Australia, and the United States.

Even the countries that are new to the EU this year can get a share of the 500 million dollars in subsidies.

Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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