The European Union has opened a tender to sell unwanted wine lakes in
four countries for use in making bioethanol, its Official Journal said
The tender would offer roughly 693,375 hectoliters of wine alcohol
[note: this is equivalent to over 80 million litres at 12% alcohol
content] stored in Greece, France, Italy and Spain. The deadline for
bids was July 5, it said in its latest edition.
"A tendering procedure for the sale of wine alcohol for exclusive use as
bioethanol in the fuel sector in the community should be organized...
with a view to reducing community stocks of wine alcohol and ensuring
continuity of supplies," it said.
France, Italy and Spain are the EU's largest winemakers by volume and
receive generous amounts of cash from Brussels to distill some of their
excess wine, both table and quality, into industrial alcohol or biofuel.
EU Agriculture Commissioner Mariann Fischer Boel has presented four
broad policy options for overhauling EU wine policy, with a formal
reform proposal to be published on July 4. She has said publicly that
she favors abolishing the existing system of "crisis distillation," an
emergency market tool used as a short-term measure to correct supply
Fischer Boel has repeatedly complained that the EU wine industry still
depends too much on distillation to rid itself of unwanted "wine lakes"
at the taxpayers' expense, saying a fundamental reform is needed to make
EU wines more competitive.
Check for earlier Pacific Biofuel posts: http://pacbiofuel.blogspot.com/