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The Romans are credited for planting and growing early vineyards in France. Through centuries, french vineyards continued to develop as did the foreign trade. However, in the 1800s many of the French vineyards fell victim to a disease, Phylloxera – a small insect that destroys the roots of vines - that crippled the country’s wine production. In 1900s after France suffered under two world wars, contributing to a significant decrease in the quality and availability of prestigous French wines, the A.O.C. was devised. It served to redeem the country’s wine reputation and determine structured protocol for quality and consistency within the French wine market. Today, it is estimated that France has around 150,000 grape growers, producing about 1.5 billion gallons of wine per year. There are many recognized wine growing regions, spanning north to south and east to west. French wines continue to serve as the archetype to which modern wines worldwide are evaluated against.