Conseil Interprofessionnel des Vins de Provence (CIVP), an organization representing more than 750 vineyards in Provence, France, has condemned a new European Commission initiative that would accept the blending of 5 percent red wine and 95 percent white wine to produce rosé. If the proposed ruling is approved on June 19, the blending technique could go into effect as early as Aug. 1. The European Union says that allowing the creation of a blended rosé would open additional export markets for Italian and Spanish wine producers who have an oversupply of red and white wines.

French winemakers create dry rosé by briefly macerating red grapes and removing the juice before it becomes heavily colored, giving the wine its unique flavor profile. Thus, the CIVP says that simply mixing a solution of white wine "with a dash of red" is by nature not true rosé, despite its pink color, and that it will mislead consumers.

"It has taken man years of patience, professionalism and exacting attention to quality control to persuade consumers that
rosé is a distinctive, refreshing selection for wine lovers throughout the world," said Francois Millo, director of CIVP-Wines of Provence, in a statement. "This proposal will destroy the true wine's hard-earned image and undermine a time-honored tradition of production excellence."

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