Sales of wine in France contracted because of the measures to limit the spread of the coronavirus and the surplus will now be turned into hand gel and ethanol, agricultural agency FranceAgriMer said earlier in June, as cited by The Guardian.
Two million hectolitres of wine will be distilled by 33 authorised distilleries to make room for new wine production. Winemakers will get payments of EUR 78 and EUR 58 per hectolitre for appellation and non-appellation wines, respectively. They can apply for the EU-funded measure and state the amount of wine they want to turn in for distillation by June 19.
The resulting alcohol will not be used for the production of spirits. It will go to the pharmaceutical and cosmetic industry and to make hand sanitiser.
According to the government agency, about three million hectolitres of unsold wine needs distillation.
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