The annual French wine harvest in the Montmartre area of Paris has celebrated this year's harvest with its traditional festival of colour and pageantry -- but against a background of gloomy news for the wine makers.
GV Majorettes leading wine festival procession through streets of Montmartra, Paris, France
SV Religious order members in traditional dress and war veteran marching
GV Girls carrying magnums of champagne, being followed by boys' band
SV Piper leading procession past crowds
GV PAN Women and children in national costume walking across vineyard
SVs Girl cutting bunch of grapes and people in national costume watching (3 shots)
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Background: The annual French wine harvest in the Montmartre area of Paris has celebrated this year's harvest with its traditional festival of colour and pageantry -- but against a background of gloomy news for the wine makers. For the 1977 harvest is late, and only of medium yield -- about two million gallons (nine million litres) down on last year because of bad spring frosts and heavy summer rain.
SYNOPSIS: But that didn't dampen the spirits of the merry-makers at the Montmartre festival. For the celebration is perhaps more about sheer enjoyment than the more commercial aspect of the country's national drink.
The champagne growers are perhaps the least likely to be hit by this year's poor harvest. They're hoping their grape yield will be down by about only ten per cent.
The climax of the festival -- the sprawling vineyard set incongruously on the edge of the cramped, over-crowded streets of Montmartre. To mark the end of the season -- the Symbolic cutting of a bunch of grapes. Across the country, while the gallonage was down, a sunny September and the use of sugar to enrich the grapes in some regions have given hopes for good vintages.