The World of Wine & Spirits from HEMANT SINGH

Beverages are potable drinks which have thirst-quenching, refreshing, stimulating and nourishing qualities. By refreshing, one means the replenishment of fluid loss from the body due to perspiration. Simulation results in increase of the heart beat and blood pressure. This is due to the intake of spirits (alcohol) or tea (thein) and coffee (coffein). Nourishment is provided by the nutrients in the beverages, especially fruit juices. Most of the beverages supply energy in the form of sugar or
alcohol. They also provide other nutrients like mineral salts and vitamins. For example, milk gives calcium and citrus fruits give vitamin C.
Generally, people drink for one or more of six reasons; to quench thirst, to get drunk, to enjoy a social setting (social drinking), to enjoy the taste of the beverage, to feed an addiction (alcoholism), or as part of a religious or traditional ceremony or custom (proposing toast).

Indian Wine industry adapts to global standards

The Indian wine industry is coming of age. The country was recently invited by the International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV) to be part of the worldwide process to decide on international labelling norms and standardising Codex specifications for the industry globally. Yatin Patil, president, All-India Wine Producers Association (AIWPA), who is back in India after attending the meet in Paris, said several discussions are now taking place for consolidating a set of norms for processing aids and additives in wines as well as understanding labelling norms. He was nominated by the Ministry of Food Processing to represent Indian interests and perspectives at the meet.
OIV, a group of government bodies of elected member countries, currently has 46 members with Armenia being the latest addition. India joined the OIV in July 2012 and became the 44th member of the organisation. The member states represent 85% of wine production in the world.  OIV director general Jean- Marie Aurand recently visited India when the issue of India’s membership to the OIV was discussed and the Indian membership has been renewed.
In India, FSSAI is following Codex specifications. OIV is an observer in that organisation and is likely to be appointed in the Codex committee for additives. While codex standards regard food safety, OIV standards are benchmarks for correcting the faults in wine and improving the quality of wines.
The OIV is an inter-governmental organisation of a scientific and technical nature of recognised competence for its works concerning vines, wine, wine-based beverages, table grapes, raisins and other vine-based products and is based out of Paris.
India is the fifth-largest producer of eating grapes and resins. Adhering to international standards – which OIV helps establish – is very important for exports.  Although India’s production and consumption is still low, Consumption is increasing and in 10 years India is expected to be a big player in the wine sector. At present, almost two of every five bottles consumed in the world are imported (over 40%). Ten years ago it used to be 25%. The increasing international trade has made the international wine standards very important and India could derive a lot of benefits by being actively involved in the working and deliberations.
Earlier, India had also attempting to join the WWTG (World Wide Trade Group) of Washington DC, an informal grouping of industry representatives from wine-producing countries. India participated as an observer in an important meeting of WWTG in Washington around three years ago. While the OIV membership helped India get access to the state-of-the-art scientific knowledge about vines, wines and grapes, WWTG members that include Argentina, Australia, Canada, Chile, New Zealand, South Africa and the US can help India in trade.
Patil said that the 40th World Congress of Vine and Wine and the 15th General Assembly of the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) will be held in Sofia, Bulgaria, from May 29 to June 2, 2017 and India is expected to attend this meet. There are around 110 wineries in India (including 72 in Maharashtra) with the industry size being pegged at around Rs 2,000 crore. However, Supreme Court’s decision to ban sale of liquor along the highways is a setback.
According to Rajdheer Jadhav, a wine industrialist from Nashik, around 70% of the hotels and restaurants are located along highways and ban of this nature would affect the industry badly. Jagdish Holkar, former chairman, India Grape Processing Board, said wine should be treated differently and the Indian Tourism Board should also look seriously into the issue as this could adversely impact the country’s tourism.



Area (ha)
Production (t)
Anab-e-Shahi (white, seeded)
Bangalore Blue Syn. Isabella (black, seeded)
Bhokri (white, seeded)
Flame Seedless (red, seedless)
Gulabi Syn. Muscat Hamburg (purple, seeded)
Perlette (white, seedless)
Sharad Seedless – A mutant of Kishmish Chorni (black, seedless)
Thomson Seedless and its mutants (white, seedless)


Vineyards in India range from the more temperate climate of the northwestern state of Punjab down to the southern state of Tamil Nadu. Some of India’s larger wine producing areas are located in Maharashtra, Karnataka near Bangalore and Andhra Pradesh near Hyderabad. Within the Maharashtra region, vineyards are found on the Deccan Plateau and around Baramati, NashikPuneSangli and Solapur. The high heat and humidity of the far eastern half of the country limits viticultural activity.