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Creating WineThe Emergence of a World Industry, 1840-1914$
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James Simpson

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780691136035

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691136035.001.0001

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Surviving Success in the Midi: Growers, Merchants, and the State

Surviving Success in the Midi: Growers, Merchants, and the State

(p.58) Chapter 3 Surviving Success in the Midi: Growers, Merchants, and the State
Creating Wine

James Simpson

Princeton University Press

This chapter looks at the experience of the Midi, France's cheapest wine producer. After examining long-run changes in France's domestic wine supply, and in particular merchants' attempts to augment supply during the phylloxera epidemic by adulteration, it shows how the changes in political strength of small farmers and workers increased during the Third Republic, especially after the 1884 law permitting the formation of syndicates. Despite the presence of large vineyards in the Midi, the wine industry was relatively united in its attempt first to tackle phylloxera and replant, and then to demand state intervention to control fraud. Finally, the chapter considers how smaller growers started to establish cooperatives in response to another threat to their livelihood, namely, the increasing economies of scale and skills required for wine production and marketing.

Keywords:   Midi, French wine, wine adulteration, small farmers, wine industry, phylloxera, fraud, regional cooperatives

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