An overnight grape heist resulted in a devastating loss for Firefly Hill Vineyards in Elliston, Va. In only a few hours, thieves stole two-and-a-half tons of grapes from the vineyard’s fields on September 10.
Vineyard owners Allison and David Dunkenberger awoke to find the vines stripped of their grapes. David told Virginia radio station WFXR that the crop was expected to produce at least 1,200 liters of wine.
In total, the theft resulted in approximately $50,000 of lost supplies, labor and potential sales. David estimated it would have taken his eight-person team approximately 12 hours to pick the grapes themselves. He said the thieves left him only 200 pounds of grapes.
Unfortunately, this is not the first major loss in liquor products this year. Part of a Kentucky bourbon warehouse collapsed, resulting in the loss of 9,000 barrels of bourbon. Soon after, another section of the warehouse collapsed, damaging an additional 9,000 barrels. In the same month, a fire destroyed 65,000 liters of rum in Jamaica.