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Chile extends state of emergency over frost

October 7, 2013

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — Chile is extending a state of emergency due to a frost that has badly damaged fruit and wine crops.

The government declared the agricultural state of emergency for two new regions Monday after announcing it last week for the central region that is Chile’s top wine and fruit producer.

Agriculture Minister Luis Mayol said the measure seeks to focus more resources and money to help farmers. Chile’s Fruit Producers Federation estimates the frost has caused $1 billion worth of damage to fruit crops.

The badly hit central region is home to vineyards owned by wine labels Concha y Toro, Misiones de Rengo and Santa Rita.

Chile’s Wine Association estimates that the frost could reduce production of grapes for wine by up to 20 percent from last season.

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