ow would you define your personal relationship with wine? What is your vision: a convivial and heritage drink or an economic and symbolic asset for France?
Anne Hidalgo : Above all, I have a cultural and personal attachment to wine. Particularly with Burgundy wines, which I associate with the memory of a visit to the Hospices de Beaune when I was in CM2. I also like certain powerful wines, like Cahors, and Côtes-du-Rhône, in memory of Lyon and my father.
The denormalization of alcohol consumption in general, and of wine in particular, comes up in many public health projects. As president, what would be your policy on the matter: promoting consumption in moderation or strengthening protection against excessive consumption?
I am delighted that consumer behavior has changed profoundly in recent decades thanks to prevention measures. The consumption of alcohol is not without risk, it should be kept in mind. I also salute the adaptability of the wine sector, which has been able to bet on quality in the face of the decline in the quantity of wine consumed by French people. However, I am not advocating the “zero alcohol”. A public health policy depends above all on taking into account the types of use. To do this, I want to put in place a prevention plan based on diet, sport and environmental health.
The vineyard takes hold of the agro-ecological transition: do you want to support the vineyard at its own pace (aid for certifications, reduction of inputs, compensation for Non-Treatment Zones, ZNT, etc.) or go faster (prohibit certain practices, reduce active ingredients, increase the ZNT…)?
Despite the decline in the number of farms and operators in France, the wine sector remains one of the most attractive for new farmers. The sector of excellence in French viticulture must not lose this attraction. I will engage all the means necessary for its transition, in terms of compensation, aid for conversion and initial and continuous training. I welcome the European Commission’s objective of halving the use of pesticides by 2030. Alternatives exist, with biocontrol products in particular. Tillage makes it possible to do without herbicides: many winegrowers are going in this direction, it is necessary to support the others, financially as well as materially.
Faced with climate change, what would be your support policy (harvest insurance, storage, etc.)?
Climate change directly threatens our agriculture. I want to encourage agricultural innovation to prevent this threat, in particular through the search for resistant grape varieties and agroforestry practices offering shade areas to the vines. At the same time, the insurance system must be rethought to better articulate it with the system of agricultural disasters, which is due to change in depth. Private insurance is not enough, and faced with the worsening of agricultural crises linked to climate change, we must consider as soon as possible an extension of national solidarity beyond the only risks known as “exceptional” to also cover more frequent risks. This is particularly true for the wine sector, and I believe that all farmers, whether or not they have an insurance contract, must be able to benefit from sufficiently large compensation in the face of climatic hazards.
With the massive change of generation to come, the question arises of the taxation of the family transmission of wine assets: what would be your answer?
As soon as I am elected, I will pass a major law on the sharing and protection of agricultural land. It will oversee all land markets and fight against land grabbing, through a ten-year plan for the renewal of generations of farmers.
How do you see the French vineyard at the end of your mandate, in 2027?
I propose a new model of agriculture, which is based on agroecology: maintenance of fertility cycles, use of natural products, guarantee of farmers’ income. This is how we will build an agricultural model that simultaneously protects producers’ incomes, their health and the quality of their production. This is what I wish for the French vineyard in 2027: a sector whose excellence and worldwide reputation are intact, and which has resolutely pursued its agroecological transition thanks to the public authorities. I emphasize this because, for public decision-makers, setting objectives in consultation with the sector is only reasonable if they are accompanied by appropriate means.