Burgundy Winemaker Fined $41K for Not Using Pesticides

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Strong overtones of bureaucracy. Photo: Getty Images

An organic winemaker in the Côte d'Or faces six months jail time and nearly $41,000 in fines for refusing to use pesticides, a violation of laws that require use of certain chemicals to protect against insect-transmitted bacterial outbreaks. Winemaker Emmanuel Giboulot claims his vines were not affected by the disease and that Pyrevert, the required chemical, is a neurotoxin that is potentially dangerous to beneficial insects; however, precedent is not on his side: The last grower found guilty still had to pay a whole euro, even after agreeing to use the pesticide. [NYT, Bastamag]