Champagne Harvest 2017

9th August 2017


The Comité Champagne have announced the yield for the Champagne harvest. 10,800 kg per hectare including 500kg per hectare to be unblocked from the reserves.

The Minister of Agriculture has just announced that the French wine harvest would be ‘historically low’. Yields in some wine making areas such as Bordeaux and the Jura have been cut by as much as 50%. The causes of this were a lack of water in Spring and a severe frost in April. In Champagne, frost damage stands at 20%. The Aube has been particularly badly affected sometimes with the same villages that were badly hit last year.

The weather though has been good since mid-May. Vines are about 10 days ahead in their growing cycle and healthy. Champagne makers will though have to keep their fingers crossed until the actual harvest.

Champagne shipments have risen in the first six months of this year. If this continues it could make it a record year for turnover beating 2015. The 10,000 kg per hectare yield will give the makers the possibility of producing from 310 to 320 million bottles and so meet increasing demand.

The harvest is expected to start in late August. This will make it one of the five earliest in the history of Champagne.

Houses have started in the last few weeks their search for grape pickers. They have now turned their sights to the net and particularly Facebook. It’s reckoned to be a very good way to find the right candidates for the back-breaking harvest to come.


Jon Catt

Tour guide for the Champagne region who lives in Troyes. Specialising in family run Champagne house visits in the Aube and the Marne plus wine tours in the Yonne and Côte d'Or.