WINE MAKING HAS ITS ROOTS flRM-LY entwined within human civilisation itself. For thousands of years, people have cultivated the grape, drunk its fermented juices and they liked it so much they created gods, such as Bacchus, in dedication to it.
Millennia later, the global market for wine is vast and the demand for alcoholic beverages as a whole is predicted to rise over the next decade. Wine, which currently makes up a relatively low proportion of consumption compared to beer and spirits, it is thought, will eat into the market share of its more dominant rivals. The reasons for this are varied. Among them are wine's health-giving properties when consumed in moderation.
This growth in the demand for wine is being driven by lifestyle changes in emerging markets brought on by greater affluence. Demand from China is leading the surge, but so too are the tastes of consumers in Russia and India, potentially adding many hundreds of millions of drinkers to the established historical centres of wine lovers in Europe - still by far the largest market - and North America, which have shown a decline in wine consumption in recent years.
France is still the world's dominant wine producer, a position it recently regained …