Freedom of the press. Freedom of religion. How about freedom of booze?
Back in 1976, the U.S. exported $6 million dollars worth of wine. By 2006, however, that figure climbed to a staggering $1 billion dollars. How did it happen? California’s great climate and the shocking results of a blind taste test set up by French wine makers in 1976 certainly helped but perhaps the most important factor is the California wine makers’ ability to innovate and create. Where the government here largely stays out of the wine making business, the French government sticks its nose into about every aspect of the wine-making process from deciding alcohol contents to dictating which type of grape can be grown in what region.
What results is perhaps some great tradition but also a stultified industry that is hog-tied by wine certification laws that prevent experimentation and innovation.
Check out reason.tv’s take on how all this went down in video below.
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