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The planet may (or may not) be running out of wine

The planet may (or may not) be running out of wine
(Image: Geoffrey Fairchild)

Wine lovers worldwide braced themselves last week for the ultimate oenophilian catastrophe: an impending global wine shortage. The source of the alarm? A research report from a pair of Australia-based analysts with financial services firm Morgan Stanley, who observed that the world’s 2012 wine yield was 300 million cases short of demand and predicted higher wine export prices on a global scale. Despite the raft of scaremongering articles that followed, however, there’s no need to start panicking (or stockpiling) just yet. Some experts are calling the report a bunch of alarmist bunk, accusing the analysts of overstating their thesis to justify the bank’s support for an Australian wine producer’s stock. Meanwhile, the International Organisation of Wine and Vine claims that wine production actually skyrocketed in 2013, and may be heading toward its highest level in seven years. Closer to home, Wine Council of Ontario president Allan Schmidt agrees that a world-wide shortage is unlikely and even has an extra bit of reassurance for Ontarians: no matter what else happens, thanks to extensive government regulation, prices for Ontario bottles will likely remain stable. Score one for the LCBO. [BBC News]

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