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Franciacorta set for strong harvest

Published:  19 August, 2019

Expectations are high for the Franciacorta harvest, which starts today.

Picking will begin in the south-facing vineyards of Monte Orfano and its plantings of Chardonnay, Pinot Nero and Pinot Bianco. The rest of the DOCG region, which is situated in Brescia, northern Italy, will be harvested in the two weeks following 25 August.

Francesco Franzini, vice president of the Consorzio Franciacorta, said: “The 2019 vintage did not have a linear trend and was not easy to manage in the vineyards: after a very cold and rainy spring and a summer that began with droughts, the current phase of maturation is taking place in ideal conditions in order to guarantee an excellent quality of the grapes.

“This set of conditions, even contrasting, with a late harvest, is often the bearer of particularly interesting wines and therefore I assume we can expect a very positive harvest, especially from a qualitative point of view.”

The 2018 harvest was good, but severe frosts in 2017 cut the harvest by around 50%.

A typical year’s production averages around 17 or 18 million bottles.

Franciacorta didn’t begin exporting its production until 2012.

Switzerland became its primary export market in 2018, overtaking Japan. The consortium regards Japan – together with the UK, Germany and the US – as one of its main targets for export growth.

The Consorzio Franciacorta was founded in March 1990 and represents the region’s 116 producers of sparkling wine. Its vineyards extend to some 3,000 ha.