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Heavy hail storms hit the wine region of Gattinara, damaging up to 100% of the vines.
A series of powerful storms with high winds and heavy hail swept through the Italian wine-growing region of Gattinara in Piedmont, causing significant damage to the vineyards. Eyewitnesses said that large hazelnut-sized hailstones cut the leaves and damaged the skin of the young berries. According to winemakers, in some vineyards, 80-100% of the vines were affected.
Lorella Zoppis, co-owner of Antoniolo winery, noted that there has been no such damage since 1971: “Unfortunately, now there are heavy rainstorms almost every year, but usually damage from them can only be observed in certain areas. In this case, the disaster struck almost all vineyards on the territory of Gattinara, as well as part of Bramaterra, Costa della Sesia and Gemme.”
Usually, hail has a very local impact, but in recent years the intensity of storms has increased, which, according to scientists, is associated with climate change. The elements can cause especially severe damage during a period when young grapes are not yet strong enough to withstand such unfavorable conditions. It will take a few more weeks for winemakers to determine how long it will take for the vines to recover and what the actual loss is.