Wildfires that spread through California’s wine country will leave a lasting mark on the industry and its tourism.
The Sacramento Bee newspaper reports that the state’s wine industry in Napa and Sonoma counties faced the wildfires at the worst time of the year possible, as fall is a prime time for visitors, where tourism is a $3.2 billion industry annually.
Wine country has bounced back quickly from previous disasters, including a 2014 earthquake and flooding a decade ago. But experts say the deadliest set of wildfires in California history could prove challenging for tourism promoters.
On a positive note for the industry, a vast majority of grapes had been harvested by the time the fires broke out, and vineyard owners were able to truck their grapes and unfinished wines to other parts of Northern California for safekeeping.
Just a handful of wineries have been outright destroyed, and even their owners were talking about getting back on their feet soon, according to the newspaper.
From the National Association of Farm Broadcasting News Service.