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Ahr wineries have suffered the most from the devastating flooding in Germany.
Heavy rains in Northern Europe last week caused devastating flooding in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany, which was hit hardest by the water disaster. According to official figures, 183 people died, dozens are considered missing, and thousands of houses, roads and bridges have been destroyed. The wine-growing regions of Germany suffered significant damage. Among the regions, Ahr suffered the most.
Located in the valley of the river of the same name, a tributary of the Rhine, Ahr is famous for its picturesque steep hills on which vines grow: Spätburgunder, Früburgunder, Portugueser and Dornfelder have become the visiting cards of the region. However, now the grapes on the vines are the only thing that some winemakers have left because the water destroyed the premises, the machinery and equipment of the wineries, literally carrying away tractors, cisterns and presses in its streams.
Ahr winemakers will not only have to decide how and where they will be able to press and ferment grapes, but also where to get additional labor to take care of the vineyards until harvest, since they have lost all the equipment.
While the authorities are calculating possible losses and developing plans to provide assistance to the victims, their colleagues from neighbouring regions came to the aid of Ahr winemakers. Winemakers, whose vineyards have not been touched by the element, organize themselves into teams and help with cleaning in the vineyards, as well as share the essentials, including mobile generators, because the region was left without water, mobile communications and electricity.
The German association of elite farms Verband Deutscher Prädikatsund Qualitätsweingüter organizes charitable events: for example, next weekend a wine festival will take place in Gunderloch, 100% of the proceeds of which will go to help Ahr winemakers.
Photos: dw.com, reuters.com