The people who grow Missouri’s wine crop need to catch a break from the weather.

The head of the state agriculture department’s grape and wine program says the wet spring and summer have challenged Missouri’s 150 grape growers who have fought fungus, rot, and insects. Director Jim Anderson says the crop is looking good but it’s entering a critical phase—and needs a letup in the heavy rains, high winds, and especially hail. He says grape growers worry about the amount of water in grapes in wet years. But he says warm, dry days are needed now to increase the sugar content of the grapes before harvest next month.

Anderson says wine producers already are surveying the crop to try to gauge the quality of wine they’ll be able to produce from it.

Missouri has about 14-hundred acres of mature, productive,a grape vines and is adding 100 to 200 acres a year to that total.

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