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Nov 12, 2007 17:37 EEST
CHISINAU (Moldova), November 12 (SeeNews) – Moldova’s grape harvest rose by 33% this year to 600,000 tonnes thanks to favourable weather conditions, the government agency for grape and wine production, Moldova-Vin, said on Monday.
"The lack of rain in the period of the vines flowering influenced the level of sugar in the grapes, which was on a quite high level of 21%. The lack of humidity also has protected the vineyards from possible diseases," a Moldova-Vin official who declined to be named told SeeNews.
The official added that the harvest was in line with the official forecast for 2007.
The average yield stood at 4.5 tonnes per hectare this year, up from 3.2 tonnes per hectare in 2006. Moldova planted 5,200 hectares of new vineyards in the current year.
Moldova has exported 20,000 tonnes of grapes so far and put around 15,000 tonnes into storage, the official said.
Mainly agricultural Moldova, wedged between Romania and Ukraine, has 156,400 hectares of vineyards. Some 85% of them are wine grape varieties.
Wine production in the ex-Soviet country is the main industrial sector with around 25% of Moldova's export revenue coming from the sales of wine and spirits.
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