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RESOLUTION LEDNICE – SOUTHERN MORAVIA (CZ) – 27th OF MAY 2016 SUPPORT FOR STEEP SLOPE VITICULTURE

Monday 06 Jun 2016

Le 06 Jun 2016 -

RESOLUTION

 

LEDNICE – SOUTHERN MORAVIA (CZ) – 27th OF MAY 2016

 

SUPPORT FOR STEEP SLOPE VITICULTURE

 

In numerous European regions we find wine making carried out on hills, steep slopes or terraces characterised by declivities greater than 30%.

 

This type of viticulture is a jewel to be promoted and preserved for future generations, in that it is synonymous with quality, biological diversity, sustainable farming and the beauty of the carefully managed landscapes. As such, steep slope viticulture represents a part of European cultural heritage that should be preserved.

 

This type of viticulture is very often carried out on small, and sometimes tiny, family-run vineyards. For the wine makers in these zones, steep slope viticulture represents a major challenge, since exploiting vines situated on hills, steep slopes or terraces demands for more manual work, as well as being more costly, than viticulture practised on the plains.                                  

 

AREV highlights the unique character of these vineyards, which have numerous and wide-ranging functions, from economic, ecological and social through to cultural and touristic.                       

 

Ensuring the future sustainability and development of steep slope viticulture, in order to improve both efficiency and the future prospects for these wine makers, requires a policy of support on a European and national level that is both targeted and sustainable.

 

Currently, there is nothing in the European texts, either in the regulations or in the measures of support, which adequately takes into consideration the wide range of functions attached to this particular type of viticulture.

The current support measures are inadequately financed to ensure the perennity of viticulture carried out on steep slopes or terraces. A lot of these vineyards are abandoned!

 

In view of    

 

  • The handicap of exploiting vines on steep slopes or terraces necessitating the use of specialised and more costly equipment, or exploiting the vines without any possibility of mechanisation,                        
  • The significant additional production costs that result,
  • The resulting loss of competitiveness, 
  • The need to ensure the future of this irreplaceable type of viticulture with its numerous functions in terms of the economy (maintaining vineyards, the opportunities in terms of employment and the economic potential of the territories), the cultural landscapes (tourist drawing-power, wine tourism), and ecology (protection against erosion, capacity to retain water),                   
  • The predictable rise in pressure from competition caused by the new system of planting rights,                       
  • The increasing transfer of vines from steep slope locations to the plains, and      
  • The serious economic, social and ecological consequences for the inhabitants of these regions that would occur if these unique vineyards were abandoned or no longer exploited.                                      

 

AREV’s member regions urgently demand the recognition in principle, in the European agricultural policy, of steep slope viticulture and of the invaluable ecological, economic and social work carried out by the wine makers, in the form of:                                                                      

 

  • An annual subsidy proportionate to the area exploited aimed at compensating wine makers for the additional cost of exploiting vines on steep slopes or terraces within the framework of the first pillar of the Common Agricultural Policy CAP (EU) No. 1308/2013, in addition to the existing measures set out in the national aid programmes,   
  • The recognition in the second pillar of the exploitation of vines on steep slopes as an agro-environmental measure should be encouraged,
  • Classification as a high-priority environmental measure in the establishment and the exploitation of vines on steep slopes or terraces,                 
  • Taking into account the specific features of steep-slope viticulture in any forthcoming European legislation, that concerning phytosanitary treatment by means of flying apparatus, for example, and
  • The Member States and the Regions must be authorised to stipulate that Authorisations for replanting from steep slope vineyards can only be used for steep slope areas. 

 

This resolution was drafted by the Steep Slope Viticulture Commission, which met on the 22nd of April 2016 at the Steep Slope Viticulture Centre in Bernkastel-Kues, DLR-Moselle, so that it could be presented for adoption at AREV’s plenary meeting.

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