This decision was made by the European Commission on 11 October 2006 and was formally enacted by Regulation EC 1507/2006.
This regulation imposes a number of rules on producers in terms of the species of wood to be used (Quercus only), the type of process authorised, the prohibition of additions of chemical or natural products (flavourings, phenolic compounds, etc.).
Since then, this regulatory framework has been complemented and replaced by Regulation EC 606/2009 of July 2009. Now the only regulation applicable, this widens the application field in which pieces of wood for oenology can be used, which is now all stages of vinification and maturation.
Wood products for oenology in various formats (chips, staves, blocks, inserts, etc.) can therefore be used for:
- all types of wines;
- at all stages in wine production (from the pre-fermentation phase);
- this is valid for the 27 member nations of the European Union;
- while strictly referring to the application field set out by the regulation.
Each Member Nation of the European Union is free to make more restrictive specific provisions for wines with a protected designation of origin or (PDO or AOP/AOC in France) or a protected geographical indication or (PGI or IGP in France). This is left to the discretion of the relevant and authorised bodies; for France, this is the INAO. We recommend consulting the PDO syndicates in order to check the compatibility of the use of wood for oenology with specific provisions.