Chile is ‘back in business but still counting the cost’

More than £200,000 has been raised in the UK for the Chile earthquake appeal, according to Wines of Chile UK.

Director Michael Cox told OLN: “An increasing number of retailers are pledging contributions from their sales of Chilean wines to the funds, and many importers are offering support and wine donations to fundraising events that are planned in the coming weeks.

“My contacts in Chile are all genuinely touched by the expressions of support and solidarity in the UK – Chile’s most important and buoyant export market.”?Cox confirmed that the 2010 harvest was going ahead “without too much disruption and in good weather” following the huge earthquake that killed hundreds of people at the end of February.

“The priority is to clear up damage to buildings and infrastructure, and ensure winery workers are safe and their houses inhabitable,” he said.

Cox added there had been a massive power failure affecting many wineries at the weekend.

“Chile is back in business but is still counting the cost, however, the new government has committed significant funds from Chile’s surpluses to pay for the country’s reconstruction.”?He said parts of the country were still experiencing aftershocks. “In the Rancagua area in Cachapoal Valley a tremor registered over seven on the Richter scale last week. Reflecting the resilience and humour of many Chileans, this was described as a ‘minor irritation’ by one of the wineries,” Cox said.

Donations can be made to Wines of Chile Earthquake Appeal, Barclays Bank, sort code 20-74-09, account number 63514986.