French farmers find innovative solutions to battle unexpected cold spell

French farmers are battling challenging weather conditions with innovative methods.
French farmers are battling challenging weather conditions with innovative methods. © FRANCE 24 screengrab

As France experiences an unexpected cold snap, farmers are scrambling to save their crops and are being forced to come up with inventive solutions to the deadly frost.

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Late frosts throughout France are feared to have caused damage to vineyards, orchards and crops with producers trying to counter the sudden drop in temperatures with a wide range of protections including candles, water sprays and even helicopters.

One farmer has been spraying his apple orchard with water to protect it from frost damage. "It's simple: The water produces this gel the moment it freezes. And this frees up calories, which are digested inside the ice and the apple blossom. It's less cold inside the ice, like an Eskimo inside an igloo, than outside," he explained.

Another farmer in Burgundy has lit giant candles throughout his vines and hopes it will not rain. Some have even resorted to hiring helicopters to fly low over their crops to keep the air circulating in a bid to save this year's harvest.

Click on the video player to watch this report by FRANCE 24 and FRANCE 2.

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