- Associated Press - Friday, November 6, 2015

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An abundance of ladybugs is creating headaches for Iowa’s wine industry.

The Des Moines Register reports (https://dmreg.co/1MMX05k ) that multi-colored Asian lady beetles are burrowing into clusters of grapes destined for wine barrels.

The beetles secrete a foul-smelling chemical when crushed, which can ruin large quantities of wine.

Steve Larson, the owner of Trainwreck Winery in Algona, says he plans to ask the federal government for permission to dump 250 gallons of wine after the bugs were found floating in his supply. Had the batch been bottled and sold in stores, it would have been worth nearly $19,000.

Ken Holscher, an associate entomology professor at Iowa State University, says the beetles thrived this year because of a near-record soybean crop that fed them and the absence of a hard freeze.


Information from: The Des Moines Register, https://www.desmoinesregister.com

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