The news has just come in a few days ago: the official wine of the 2016 Tour de France will be Chilean - the Bicicleta vintage of the Chilean group Cono Sur. Since this announcement, winegrowers all over France have expressed their dissatisfaction and above all their incomprehension regarding the choice of the organiser, Amaury Sport Organisation (ASO).
From July 2, the country will live to the rhythm of the 2016 Tour de France. Known throughout the world and attended by several million people, the Tour de France is a major sporting event and a showcase for France. Benefiting from extensive media coverage, the partners of "La Grande Boucle" (Bic, Vittel, Cochonou, Carrefour, Krys, among others...) are taking advantage of this international competition to show their commitment to national colours.
And that's exactly what irritates French winegrowers. The winegrowers of the Aude are offended by the choice made by the organizers of the Tour by awarding the title of official wine to a Chilean wine and not to a local product.
While the International Agricultural Show is in full swing and the press is talking every day about the difficulties of French farmers, this decision by the organizers of the Tour de France, Amaury Sport Organisation is making great noise among winegrowers and some elected officials. Carole Delga, President of the Languedoc Roussillon Midi Pyrénées region, expressed her dissatisfaction yesterday in an open letter to Christian Prudhomme, the director of the Tour de France:
"La Grande Boucle is the celebration of cycling, a popular sport accessible to all. It is also the celebration of France, its landscapes and its terroirs. Among the priceless treasures abounding in our region, there are of course vines and wine. ».
The president of the Aude wine growers' departmental union Frédéric Rouanet is also surprised by this choice of a foreign wine. Chilean wine will indeed benefit, instead of a French product, from all the notoriety of the competition during the foreign stages (Spain, Andorra and Switzerland). To make its voice heard, the union even threatens to block the mediatized stages. Since that statement, several other unions have joined the movement and the matter is taking a political turn following Senator Courteau's letter to the Director of the Tour de France.
Shamini (Les Grappes)