Climate Change is making France hotter than it’s ever been. In 2019, temperatures hit 46°C and 85 of France’s 96 departments had partial or full water restrictions. Loire Valley farmers
are suffering doubly – cattle farmers are seen as the enemy by climate change protesters, but their livelihoods are affected starkly and obviously with each dwindling crop and water shortage.
The Loire Valley’s wine production is on the line. Viticulture is dependent on good climate: vines need good rainfall early in the season, and white wines prefer lower temperatures. Wine production in France was down between six and 13 percent in 2018. A 2012 paper on the subject found that the climate in the Loire had shifted
from ‘cool’ to ‘temperate’ between 1960 and 2010, and this had made grapes with a higher concentration of sugar, and reduced the number of late spring frosts – which can be damaging to the new buds on the vines. Some speculate that the region could adapt to produce different wines, and still profit. However, anecdotes from the people in the valley are pessimistic: the wine isn’t as good as it was last year, they say.
What you can do:
Climate change is a huge issue, but we believe that reducing the carbon footprint
of your vacation can help. Choose trains over planes to get to the Loire, and when you’re here, avoid big hotels and purchase local produce over anything flown from overseas.