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Sugar content

The sugar content as a decisive component in the grapes is indicated by means of must weight in KMW (Austria), in Oechsle(Germany) or internationally also in Bé(Baumé), for example in Portugal. In Germany and Austria, so to speak, the sugar content (or theoretically possible alcohol content) in the berries is a criterion for the Prädikatswein grades. The sugar in the grape must is the basis for fermentation, during which a conversion into alcohol and carbon dioxide takes place. Above a certain alcohol content, the yeasts die and end the fermentation. The upper limit of possible alcohol content is about 16 to 18%, or up to about 20% by volume if turbo yeasts are used in fermentation. The associated lower limit of residual sugar in the wine is usually around 0.1 to 0.2 g/l. There is no wine that contains no sugar at all. The phenomenon that the subjective perception of sweetness in wine can differ from the analytical values depending on the amount of other substances is described under the heading sweet.

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