Burgundy and Chile’s Maule region have signed an agreement to formally cooperate in their respective wine sectors.
The agreement was signed as part of a state visit to France by Chile President Michelle Bachelet, whose family has ancestral roots in the village of Chassagne-Montrachet.
The agreement signed between the leaders of the regional governments of Burgundy and Maule this week includes facilitating an exchange of technology, research and investment in the region’s wine sectors.
In late July, Burgundy government officials will go to Chile to craft a specific work agenda.
Maule, in the southern part of the Central Valley, about 250km south of capitol Santiago, is Chile’s largest wine producing region. It accounts for 43% of the country’s 120,000 hectares devoted to wine growing.
The vast majority of the approximately 75 wine producers in the region are unregistered small growers that mostly supply grapes to wine cooperatives.
While Maule is mostly known for its Carmenere and Cabernet Sauvignon, Chilean enologists say there are great prospects for Pinot Noir, near the Maule coast.
Carlos Lamoliatte, export manager for Maule producer J Bouchon, told decanter.com that the agreement could provide a major boost.
‘We have a lot to learn from Burgundy. In the long-term, this agreement could especially help small wine producers in Maule, who have good people, good land, but need more know-how and capital.’
Written by Jimmy Langman in Santiago