Chile’s vineyards in the path of raging wildfires

Confronted with a series of devastating wildfires powered by strong winds, heat waves and drought conditions and raging out of control through more than 240 000 hectares across the country, Chile declared a state of emergency last Friday (January 20). President Michelle Bachelet described the situation which has reached a death toll of ten including firemen and police officers as « the worst forestry disaster in our history. »  Wine regions such as Maule and Colchagua have been hit by the fires, with more than a 100 vineyards reportedly damaged,  with in some cases the loss of precious old vines including 25 hectares of 150-year-old Pais vines at Bisogno Wines located in the sector of Cauquenes.

It is in this painful context that the trade association Wines of Chile

recently presented in Santiago its 2025 strategy for Chilean wines and its ambition to consolidate itself as the « Number 1 producer of premium, sustainable, and diverse wines in the New World » by concentrating on four pillars : quality and diversity, sustainablity, innovation and country image.

In line with a growing trend in wine markets around the world, a key focus will be the millenials as a target audience of consumers. As for sustainability, another mantra in today’s wine world, Mario Pablo Silva, President of Wines of Chile, announced that there are currently 62 vineyards that adhere to the Sustainability Code of Wines of Chile, accounting for 70% of bottled export wines from this country which remains the biggest New World exporter of wines.