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Pierce Disease

The dangerous grapevine disease (PD) was first detected in Southern California in 1880, when 20,000 hectares of vineyards were destroyed in five years. It is also known as California Vine Disease, Mysterious Disease or Anaham Disease (because it is common in California up to Anaham). At this time, the plant pathologist Newton B. Pierce (1856-1916) moved to California. It was named after him because of his services to its research. Between 1933 and 1940, the strongest distribution was in the Californian Central Valley, from where it spread over the whole southern part of the USA, Mexico and Central America.

In the United States of America, the entire Southern Belt from California in the west via Texas to Florida on the east coast is affected. At the end of the 1990s, the disease reappeared with increasing frequency. At the end of 2000, US Vice President Al Gore approved an emergency aid of 36 million dollars and declared a (agricultural) state of emergency for California. In 2014, PD caused a loss of US$ 104 million to the Californian wine industry. In Europe the disease does not yet occur. Probably the cooler climate prevents it from spreading northwards. If climate change does happen (which is quite likely), it is mainly Mediterranean areas that are threatened.

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