Established wine regions, like Burgundy, want to protect their brands. And therefore they are afraid of new players. Producers are afraid that wines without geographical origin, known as Vin de France (what used to be Vin de Table ) will invade their territory. This year there have apparently been many applications for planting rights in Burgundy for “wines without geographical origin”.
Burgundy and all the other appellations in the Burgundy region are of course protected and no Vin de France can put these names on the label. However, says the Bureau interprofessionnel des vins de Bourgogne (BIVB), nothing is stopping the producers from putting geographical names on the backside label, which can, says the bureau, confuse the consumers. But if you look at the rules, it is not easy for a Vin de France to piggyback on a famous appellation. The rules prohibit any geographical mention other than “France”. It is mandatory to put the name and address of the producer. But if the address is the same as an appellation (eg Gevrey-Chambertin or Meursault), you are only allowed to put the postal code, not the name. And given that the vine surface in France can only grow by no more than 1% each year, an invasion of Vin de France wines in Burgundy does not feel imminent. Yet another example of backward protectionism and fear of market forces.
(Source: BK Wine. Read more: larvf.com)