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07.06.2006

British Pensioners to Rescue France?

Surely you've heard of the "wine lake" ? This lovely phrase refers to the millions of gallons of wine produced in Europe, but primarily France, which has no sales outlet. It can't be sold because there's just too much of it made, too little of it consumed, and no matter what they mark it down to, the price just ain't right to buy.

This is, of course, the reason that a lot of winegrowers in France are upset, and why a few of them have turned terrorist and are doing awful things like blowing up buildings and toppling tanker trucks, and dumping tons of manure in front of some businesses.

The French and the EU have been at a loss over what to do with all this wine. The only decent proposal that has been made thus far is to distill it into industrial alcohol (ethanol) but there's not even a strong enough market to guarantee that they can sell it.

But finally, someone has come up with another solution. Ian Davidson, a Scottish Member of Parliament has developed a brilliant scheme to dry up the wine lake and do some "social good" at the same time.

He's proposing that France simply bottle the stuff and give a case to every aging pensioner in the UK. Talk about social services...

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The Oxford Companion to Wine by Jancis Robinson Wine Grapes The World Atlas of Wine by Hugh Johnson to cork or not to cork by George Taber reading between the vines by Terry Theise adventures on the wine route by Kermit Lynch Love By the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter & John Brecher Noble Rot by William Echikson The Science of Wine by Jamie Goode The Judgement of Paris by George Taber The Wine Bible by Karen MacNeil The Botanist and the Vintner by Christy Campbell The Emperor of Wine by Elin McCoy The Taste of Wine by Emile Peynaud