Tuesday, March 5, 2019

French vineyards say they are ready to end glyphosate addiction

Source: Business Times

The vaunted terroirs of France's vineyards have for decades been saturated with the world's most widely used weedkiller, but grape growers say the day is soon coming when glyphosate will no longer be part of the fine wine process.

President Emmanuel Macron has challenged the industry to stop using the herbicide - considered "probably cancerogenic" by the World Health Organization's cancer agency - faster than anyone else.

"I think we can have the first vineyards in the world without glyphosate, already the transition is going to happen in 80 per cent of cases," Mr Macron said during a marathon visit to France's annual agriculture show in Paris last weekend.

He had initially pledged to completely outlaw the weedkiller, most widely known under Monsanto's Roundup brand, by 2021, though Mr Macron admitted last month the target was probably too ambitious.

Many winemakers accept they need to wean themselves off the powerful chemical, acknowledging the growing demand for more natural and organic food and wine among global gourmets.

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