Climate change is basically playing into the hands of Luxembourg winegrowers. Near Vianden, farmer Marc Roeder is trying to capitalise on this and hopes to one day turn a hobby into an additional business pillar.
When Marc Roeder started planting grape vines in a field near Tandel in 2018, many people in the village shook their heads and thought: “He's out of his mind.” Maybe you have to be a bit crazy to try your hand at being a hobby vintner in addition to running a farm with 65 dairy cows, offspring, a bit of bull fattening and grain farming, and a seat on the local council.
But Marc Roeder takes it calmly. For the farmer, it is a hobby he enjoys. “I thought it would be nice, because I like wine”, he says with a mischievous undertone. There have been a few connections to wine in his life. Be it in his student days in Bingen on the Rhine or through relatives active in viticulture. Last but not least, Roeder is active in a historic wine-growing region. At the beginning of the 20th century, vineyards still lined the slopes below Vianden Castle. “In 1908, there were still 42 hectares of vineyards in Vianden”, Roeder reports. A few hard winters and then, above all, the introduction of phylloxera, however, brought this chapter to an abrupt end.
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“Ripeness levels that did not exist in the past”
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