French vinyards hit by violent hailstorm
Violent hailstorms have hit southwestern France, devastating vinyards in Bordeaux, Cognac and other wine-growing areas.
"This hailstorm has destroyed the harvest"Director, Côte de Bourg
Producers are now taking stock of the damage, with some saying it could take years to recover.
"There are still a few shoots," says Cyril Giresse, a wine producer at the Château Gravettes-Samonac in the Bordeaux region. "I don't know if they'll be able to grow, it depends on whether sap can get through. But to be honest, I don't believe it can. These vinyards had a dozen bunches on each root."
Didier Gontier, who directs the Côte de Bourg label in Bourg-sur-Gironde near Bordeaux, describes a similar scene:
"Dozens and dozens of hectares without any leaves, without any branches and all within 10 to 15 minutes. This hail episode destroyed all the harvest."
The storm also brought flash flooding to many areas and is being blamed for the deaths of at least two young children.