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The sparkling wine producer Freixenet is planning to make around 80 per cent of its employees temporarily redundant. This will affect 615 people. The cava giant cites the severe drought as the reason. It is considered to be the most severe in the province of Catalonia since records began. In the Penedès region, it is now so severe that 30-year-old vines have died.

According to Spanish law, employees in exceptional situations can be temporarily released by companies and their contracts suspended in order to ensure the viability of companies. The plan was presented to the authorities and trade unions. Its implementation from May would depend on the time of year and the drought situation. However, it is unclear when staff will be able to return to their jobs.

In a recent report, the UN's International Labour Organization (ILO) warned that climate change would pose health and safety risks for more than 70 per cent of all workers worldwide. Just three weeks ago, Freixenet announced that it would produce a "Cuvée de España" sparkling wine for Germany, Austria and Switzerland, as there are too few grapes from the appellation available for Cava.

(al / Source: orf.at)

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