Insight & Analysis

Portuguese village flooded by red wine!

Published: Oct 2023

Videos and images of a red river in a Portuguese village in the municipality of Anadia flooded the internet as 600,000 gallons of red wine escaped a local distillery.

Bottle of red wine being poured into a wine glass

Local distillery, Destilaria Levira, lost two tanks of wine, causing a flash flood in the village of São Lourenço do Bairro in Portugal’s central region, home to 2,200 residents. The first tank reportedly collapsed because of a structural failure, and the other was knocked over by the sheer force of the first.

The 600,000 gallons or 2.2m litres of wine that flooded the village streets is equivalent to almost filling three million bottles of wine or nearly enough to fill an Olympic swimming pool.

Local firefighters helped clear the flood and any liquid that could be collected was taken to a wastewater treatment plant.

No injuries have been reported and the spill lasted no more than an hour. Thankfully there was no lingering strong smell in the air either, because it was ‘good quality wine’ according to Pedro Carvalho, Chief Executive of the distillery.

The distillery has apologised for the incident, making the statement: “We assume full responsibility for costs associated with cleaning and repairing damage, with teams available to do so immediately. We are committed to resolving this situation as quickly as possible.”

This event occurs in the wake of a broader problem: there is too much wine in Europe. European countries are suffering from an oversupply of wine due to consumption falling by more than a third in 2023, according to a study by the European Commission. The two tanks involved in this accident were being used to store surplus wine, as a result of this issue.

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