Winebiz - Australia's Wine Industry Portal By Winetitles

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A snapshot of wine business, research and marketing content gleaned from local and international wine media sources. Emailed Monday to Friday excluding public holidays. Click here to subscribe, for advertising inquiries, click to download our media kit.

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Australian Wine Industry News

23/05/2017: Chinese winemaking students flock to Adelaide
The University of Adelaide has seen an almost three-fold increase in Chinese enrolments in the past five years in its winemaking courses, which are the most comprehensive university courses for viticulture and oenology in Australia. Source, The Lead.

23/05/2017: Future Wine Leaders announced
16 talented and driven professionals from the Australian grape and wine community have been chosen to be the Future Leaders 2017. The Future Leaders program is designed to develop participants’ leadership capabilities and encourage innovation and thoughtful debate on the future of the sector. Source, Winetitles.

23/05/2017: $88k for National Phylloxera Management Plan
The government has funded Australian Vignerons $88,000 to develop a National Phylloxera Management Plan to provide consistency in how this pest is managed across the country. The plan will help protect growers by containing the pest to its current locations. Source, Winetitles.

23/05/2017: Grecian wine trade tasting tour
Greek wine is making its way to Australia with over 20 winemakers showing off their native varieties at a series of trade and consumer tastings in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide. The tastings will showcase some varieties unfamiliar to Australia, and are in response to a steady 30% increase in Grecian wine sales since 2015. Source, The Greek Reporter.

23/05/2017: Pinot Noir growing popularity
Pinot Noir in the Australian wine market has chang.ed forever. From being inconsequential in percentage of red wine production in the early 1990s, pinot noir now outsells both shiraz and cabernet sauvignon on an annual basis in some of Australia’s more wine-oriented restaurants. Source, Community Newspaper Group.

22/05/2017: The rapidly changing Chinese wine industry
"China is a country where things move fast. I first visited in 2004, amidst the pre-Olympics building boom. This was when bikes were an essential mode of transport for most Beijingers; the bike lanes were congested and you could easily hail a taxi with the wave of a hand." Source, Winetitles.

22/05/2017: Viticulture open day success
Three active participants in the supply of tractors, spraying equipment and viticultural services recently combined to present an after vintage open day at Red Hill on the Mornington Peninsula. Attracting about 30 vineyard managers and owners, the day has been judged as a success. Source, Winetitles.

22/05/2017: Q&A with Stephanie Toole at Mt Horrocks
"Mount Horrocks came on the market and I thought, 'Well, that will give me something to do.' It was a huge learning curve. I had to juggle a new business, I was pregnant when I bought it and I had two children 15 months apart." This year is Toole's 25th vintage. Source, The Source SA.

22/05/2017: Behind the Seppelt 2007 sparkling Shiraz
The Australian sparkling wine of the year is, oddly enough, made from Shiraz in a manner pioneered in this country in the 1890s. Seppelt Show Sparkling Limited Release Shiraz 2007 was at the “pinnacle of Australian sparkling winemaking”, said judge Tyson Stelzer in his annual Australian Sparkling Wine Report. Source, The Courier Mail.

19/05/2017: Inside the completed Chateau Seppeltsfield
Barossa Valley winery, Seppeltsfield, best known for its 100-year-old Para Tawny opened a wine ‘chateau’ in China. Here are some photos from inside the chateau now that it's been officially opened. Source, Business Insider.

19/05/2017: Sue Ridler assists birth of babydoll lamb via YouTube
Sue and Tony Ridler, of their wine label Short Sheep, have ended up in an unusual situation assisting the birth of a babydoll lamb. Growing up in the city, the pair were unsure how to handle the situation so reached for the iPad and watched a YouTube tutorial. Source, ABC.

19/05/2017: Gin made with winegrapes
“Bloody Shiraz” might sound like a French horror movie but for those in the know, it’s one of the most sought-after bottles of booze in Australia. The wine and gin hybrid from Four Pillars Gin has only been produced twice, and both years the stock has completely sold out. Source, Broadsheet.

19/05/2017: WA boosts ties with Azerbaijan
Swan Valley wine may soon be sipped on the Caspian Sea, with RiverBank Estate seeking to promote its finest during an upcoming trade delegation to Azerbaijan. The winery will be among a number of local businesses travelling to the country, which borders Iran and Russia, in late October. Source, The West.

19/05/2017: NZ's take on the Yarra
The state's first wine region failed to see out the Great Depression but the industry was resurrected in the late 1960s by a few curious winemakers. Once Moet & Chandon, De Bortoli and McWilliam's came knocking in the 1980s, the region quickly expanded and is now home to more than 80 labels. Source, New Zealand Herald.

18/05/2017: What do the world’s best somms think?
In April, Wine Australia took 50 talented wine professionals on a tour of our best wine bars, restaurants and wine regions — starting in Sydney before moving on to Melbourne, then stopping to experience wine regions in Victoria, Tasmania, Canberra, South Australia and Western Australia. Here are some of their thoughts on Australian wine. Source Concrete Playground

18/05/2017: Number one plant pest under the microscope
Australia’s number one unwanted plant pest – Xylella fastidiosa – is the focus of international scrutiny in Australia this week. The Australian Government’s Department of Agriculture and Water Resources is hosting a two-day International Symposium on the bacterium from 17-18 May in Brisbane, aimed at improving knowledge of prevention and management. Source Winetitles

18/05/2017: What’s in a name? Pinot Gris/Grigio
The secret to understanding Pinot Gris/Grigio is in its name – or rather, its two names. Most Pinot Gris/Grigio in Australia is grown in the warmer inland regions: Murray-Darling Swan Hill, Riverina and the Riverland, but it is also grown in much cooler regions such as Padthaway, Wrattonbully, Adelaide Hills and King Valley – indicating its versatility. It is a favoured variety with growers, having relatively high yields and strong grape prices, reflecting strong consumer demand. Source Wine Australia

18/05/2017: Women in Wine Awards: Entries open this Saturday
Entries for the 2017 Australian Women in Wine Awards (AWIWA) open this Saturday 20 May, with eight award categories on offer – including two new ones. This is the third year the awards have been run, and for the first time the winners will be announced as part of a grand tasting event celebrating Australian Women in Wine in London, in conjunction with Wine Australia. Source Winetitles

18/05/2017: Finalists announced: Hunter Valley Wine Industry Awards
The Hunter Valley Wine and Tourism Association has announced this year's line-up of finalists in the categories of 'winemaker of the year', 'rising star of the year', 'viticulturist of the year' and 'cellar door of the year'. A 'Hunter Valley legend' will also be inducted along with a winner from each of the categories below. Source Cessnock Advertiser

17/05/2017: Bowen Estates to join Negociants
Bowen Estates is the newest brand to re-sign their distribution deal. Negociants Australia announces the commencement of distribution, in all States apart from Western Australia, for Bowen Estate from 1 June 2017. Source, Winetitles.

17/05/2017: Wine in a can, for a cause
Today, socially conscious Australian alcohol brand, The Sparkke Change Beverage Company, is adding to its range with white wine bubbles. The brand's newest product, sparkling wine in a can, will join its collection of ginger beer, hard lemonade, apple cider and lager. Source, Winetitles.

17/05/2017: Budget proposals could hurt Tasmania
At first glance the federal government’s budget announcements regarding grants to promote Australian wine domestically and internationally sound positive, but Wine Tasmania chief executive Sheralee Davies warns the funding could actually hurt the industry. Source, The Examiner.

17/05/2017: Cool-climate wines in demand
Woolgrowers on the state's east coast, who diversified into wine grapes years ago, are expanding and more farmers are following suit. The growth in premium wine sales, lucrative grape prices and long-term contracts is making Tasmanian viticulture very appealing. Source, ABC.

17/05/2017: Edible packaging
"Apart from the Australian wine industry’s revolutionary abandonment of the dreaded cork and adoption of the screw cap, not much has happened in containers." Philip White implies that Ooho, a cellulose-based product, could change the game for wine packaging. Source, InDaily.

17/05/2017: Young Gun top 12 released
The Young Gun of Wine top 12 list has been released. The 12 finalists consist of six winemakers from South Australia, two from Western Australia and Tasmania respectively, and one from both Victoria and NSW/ACT. The winners will be announced 20 June. Source, Winetitles.

16/05/2017: Bad news for dealing with lees
A Wine Australia project just completed at the Australian Wine Research Institute has filled that knowledge gap, but was unable to find a way to avoid the process of moving juice or wine and cleaning a tank each time settled lees need to be removed. Source, Wine Australia.

16/05/2017: Fancy a trade research trip to Tasmania?
Wine Tasmania has issued an invitation for Australian wine trade representatives to participate in a wine-focused visit to Tasmania in July 2017. Source, Winetitles.

16/05/2017: House of Fine Wine to launch June 1
Société Jacques Bollinger, Henschke and Villa Maria have come together to create House of Fine Wine, an Australian distribution company that will offer nationwide supply of premium wines from a single, focused portfolio. Source, Winetitles.

16/05/2017: Lightbulb Winemakers
Five small Clare wineries have joined forces to form Lightbulb Winemakers, a collective that will showcase grass roots winemaking as part of The Clare Valley’s Gourmet Weekend and beyond. Source, The Adelaide Review.

16/05/2017: Bonking Frog wine rebrands
Bonking Frog winery in Dardanup has confirmed it will rebrand this year to become Windfall Wine Estate. Twenty years since grafting their first Merlot from the Schwartzman rootstock vines, the company has embarked on a restructure that includes a name change. Source, The Bunbury Mail.

16/05/2017: #V17 Biosecurity Tips
#V17 tip #16: Talk to Vinehealth Australia on (08) 8273 0550 or email about how you can improve your farm-gate hygiene practices. #Vinehealth

15/05/2017: Wine Grape Growers Summit comes to Barossa
The fourth annual SA Wine Grape Growers Summit, the flagship event for the Wine Grape Council of SA, will be held on Friday, July 28, in the Barossa, the first time the Summit has been held in a regional centre. Source, The KI Islander.

15/05/2017: Murray Valley negotiate higher grape price
About 20 wine grape growers in the Murray Valley were able to increase the price a Sunraysia winery offered them for their fruit this vintage after appealing their initial offer under the industry’s voluntary code of conduct. Source, Sunraysia Daily.

15/05/2017: Fine vines in South Burnett
Although Kingaroy and the South Burnett have long been known as the home of quality peanut products, a closer look quickly reveals a much more diverse feast for the traveller's taste buds.Source, The Daily Examiner.

15/05/2017: Tony Love talks Kimbolton's Montepulciano
You couldn’t get a more Australian moment in a regional wine show than at last week’s Langhorne Creek awards lunch when hosts poured a sparkling red wine. Source, Adelaide Now.

15/05/2017: Wine Industry Directory released today
The latest annual Australian and New Zealand Wine Industry Directory, released today, reveals positive signs of industry recovery despite wineries continuing to exit the industry. The 35th edition published by Winetitles Media shows a further decline in the number of Australian wineries. Source, Winetitles.

12/05/2017: Gill Gordon-Smith earns a prestigious title
Winemaker and educator, Gill Gordon-Smith of Fall From Grace, has earned a prestigious title at the Vinitaly International Academy. She is among two other women in Australia to have ever received the title. Source, Winetitles.

12/05/2017: Treasury Wine Estates share price at all time high
The Treasury Wine Estates Ltd (ASX: TWE) share price rose to an all-time high of $12.98 this week, which means that the global wine company has seen its shares rise a massive 21% year-to-date. Investors appear to have been very impressed with its half-year results which revealed a stunning 132% increase in net profit after tax to $132 million. Source, The Motley Fool & Lenox Leger.

12/05/2017: Taylors employs third party to increase BTL sales
Award-winning purchase journey specialists 31ST are toasting another addition to their client portfolio, with Taylors Wines partnering with the agency to drive its below-the-line (BTL) and shopper marketing strategy. Source, Bandt.

12/05/2017: Bridestowe Ridge Vineyard wins Tassie's best
In between picking their second harvest and releasing their first in spring, Bridestowe Ridge Vineyard has been named Tasmania’s best small vineyard. The two hectare vineyard at Lilydale North won the award in the Roberts Tasmanian Vineyard of the Year competition. Source, The Examiner.

12/05/2017: Late vintage for South Australia
Wine grape harvest at Coonawarra and McLaren Vale in South Australia is two or three weeks later than the long-term average, thanks to a cooler spring and late bud burst. Source, The Weekly Times.

12/05/2017: Great wine season for Orange
The 2017 Vintage is all over bar the shouting and the last barrels of Cabernet are finishing their ferments. So, what was it like out there and what are the wine prospects for the region? First, the season... Source, Central Western Daily.

11/05/2017: Budget breakdown with Anne Ruston
Election commitments for winemakers have been delivered through Budget. Anne Ruston, Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, comments on the documented changes which include a $50 million Export and Regional Wine Support Package. Source, Winetitles.

11/05/2017: Young Gun shortlist released
Here's the final top 50 list for the Young Gun Winemaker's Awards for 2017. The list was compiled after a two-day tasting event with the shortlist of 200 candidates. Source, Winetitles.

11/05/2017: Samuel Smith & Son to distribute Mt Difficulty
Samuel Smith & Son and Mt Difficulty Wines enter in to exclusive national distribution partnership. The partnership will bring more of the premium New Zealand wines to Australia. Source, Winetitles.

11/05/2017: Climate change and Australian farmers
The wine world is totally confused by the changing climate, and knowing the agonising extended time-scales of its cycles and propensity to make bad errors of judgement when times are tough, this writer worries about its capacity to respond in a scientific way which is best for all. Source, InDaily.

11/05/2017: Australian Saperavi makes UK debut
Cool climate regions are contributing to the evolution of Australian wine. To tap into the interest in cool climates and acquaint the trade with Australia’s high altitude regions, Wine Australia ran a seminar on 5 May in London. Source, Wine Australia.

10/05/2017: Women in wine award dates announced
The Australian Women in Wine Awards today announces the key dates for the 2017 awards, as well as two brand new award categories for this, its third year. Winners will be announced at an awards ceremony and tasting at Australia House in London. Source, Winetitles.

10/05/2017: Sniffer dogs brought in to fight phylloxera
A pilot project has Agriculture Victoria scientists working with sniffer dogs and the tiny insect phylloxera, the world’s worst grapevine pest. The dogs keen sense of smell and fondness of digging makes them the ideal helper. Source, Shepparton News.

10/05/2017: Calabria Family Wines go alternative
Montepluciano, nero d’avola and aglianico are celebrated red grape varieties in Italy, but still unfamiliar to most Australian wine drinkers – something Emma Norbiato and Bill Calabria have set out to remedy. Source, The Newcastle Herald.

10/05/2017: Upper Hunter sees economic recovery
Speaking as part of a panel discussion at the breakfast, Brett Keeping, general manager of Two Rivers Wines and Vice-President of the Upper Hunter Winemakers Association, said there were positive signs that the wine industry was recovering from a prolonged downturn. Source, The Newcastle Herald.

10/05/2017: Australian Winemakers welcome the Federal Budget
The Winemakers’ Federation of Australia (WFA) has welcomed the 2017 Federal Budget, which has confirmed the wine industry reforms announced by the Government last year. Source, Winetitles.

9/05/2017: Bleasdale success at Langhorne Creek Wine Show
Bleasdale Vineyards has been named the 2017 Producer of the Year, announced at the Langhorne Creek Wine Show. They were also awarded two class trophies for Best Shiraz and Best Malbec, as well as nine gold medals. Source, Winetitles.

9/05/2017: The Passing Clouds story
Clouds passing over the Leith family venture have at times been very dark and in 1984 involved the vicious murder by a drug addict of beloved 21-year-old daughter Ondine and her boyfriend. Source, The Newcastle Herald.

9/05/2017: Wine grape forum in Mildura
The Murray Valley Winegrowers are holding an industry information forum alongside the Australian Wine Research Institute's Grape & Wine Roadshow. The day will include specific talks for Murray Valley growers as well as vineyard management information from the AWRI. Source, Winetitles.

9/05/2017: Weather shrinks 2017 vintage
Tasmania's 2017 vintage will take a significant hit following unkind weather in the lead-up to the picking season. The total grape harvest is predicted to be 10,000 tonnes, a big drop from 15,000 tonnes in 2016. Source, Brand Tasmania.

9/05/2017: Treasury Wine Estates reshapes leadership team
Treasury Wine Estates has reshuffled their team includsing international positions. Robert Foy,e who is currently the President and Managing Director for Asia and Europe will now assume the role of President of the Americas. Source, Winetitles.

9/05/2017: #V17 Biosecurity Tips
#V17 tip #15: Regularly inspect your vines for anything unusual or different. Seek help to identify what the problem is. #Vinehealth

8/05/2017: Chardonnay sales on the rise
James Halliday weighs in on the future of Chardonnay, claiming its destiny on making a comeback, and Master of wine Andrew Calliard goes through his favourites of the moment. Source, The Courier Mail.

8/05/2017: Geoff Hardy finalist at Aus-China Business Awards
Wines by Geoff Hardy has been nominated in two award categories at the prestigious AustCham Westpac Australia-China Business Awards 2017, which recognises business excellence in the Greater China market. Source, Winetitles.

8/05/2017: Australia's best Blanc des Blancs
Clover Hill was highly awarded in the recently released Tyson Stelzer’s 2017 Australian Sparkling Report, which was was published last week. If you haven't yet viewed it, here's a reminder. Source, Winetitles.

8/05/2017: Tourism minister visits Hunter Valley
The importance of tourism to the Hunter Valley’s economy was at the forefront of discussions when the state’s tourism minister visited the region this week. Source, Cessnock Advertiser.

5/05/2017: Phylloxera spreads north in the Yarra Valley
New detections of phylloxera have seen the boundary of Victoria’s Maroondah Phylloxera Infested Zone (PIZ) boundary extended to the north – incorporating four additional vineyards. Inca Pearce, Vinehealth Australia chief executive officer, said the extension to this PIZ boundary was a concern. Source, Winetitles.

5/05/2017: Tax spat between anti-alcohol lobby and winemakers
The Winemakers’ Federation of Australia (WFA) has called for the anti-alcohol lobby to play fair with tax facts. Tony Battaglene, WFA chief executive said the latest allegations were “outrageous” as well as “insulting to the 170,000 workers” across the grape and wine community. Source, Winetitles.

5/05/2017: WA Premier 'uncomfortable' with ALDI cheap wine
Premier Mark McGowan says he is "uncomfortable" with ALDI selling cheap wine after the German supermarket giants won an appeal to allow alcohol to be served at its Harrisdale store. In 2016, the Director for Liquor Licensing rejected Aldi's bid to sell wine as cheap as $2.79 a bottle at the southern suburbs store, despite Woolworths being allowed to sell booze in the same shopping complex. Source, Collie Mail.

5/05/2017: Low-cost interactive labels now a reality
Transistors consisting entirely of 2D nanomaterials have been printed for the first time, making the advent of economic, interactive labels a reality. Printed electronic circuitry will allow consumer products to gather, process, display and transmit information. Source, FoodProcessing.

5/05/2017: Same, same but very different
After almost 20 years in the industry, corporate winemaker Peter Dredge decided it was time to introduce his independent alter ego, Dr. Edge, to the world with some unconventional design. “It was a bit of a risk; a lot of guys rely on very floral, bright, lovely, happy labels – I just wanted to go on the other side of the spectrum.” Source, CityMag.

4/05/2017: Australian Vintage Ltd signs exclusive deal
Australian Vintage Limited enters in to a $16.5million deal securing exclusive distribution with Vintage China Fund L.P. who are the founders of China's largest online wine retailer, YesMyWine. Source, Winetitles.

4/05/2017: Fruit fly coordinator for Yarra Valley
The Andrews Labor Government has funded the appointment of a Fruit Fly Regional Coordinator in the Yarra Valley to help protect horticultural production and keep the area fruit fly free. Source, Winetitles.

4/05/2017: The most unique wine region in Australia
At just 14100ha Nagambie Lakes is one of the smallest wine regions in all of Australia. It's the only region in Australia where the growing climate is dramatically influenced by an inland water mass. Source, Shepparton News.

4/05/2017: Aldi now selling wine in Perth
ALDI has had a big win in its bid to sell booze, with the Liquor Commission granting the supermarket giant a licence allowing it to sell alcohol at its Harrisdale store after a successful appeal. Source, Perth Now.

4/05/2017: Showcasing Coonawarra
Three international wine tourism delegates visited the district on Tuesday with the aim of unravelling what makes SA a premium wine tourism destination. Primary Industries and Regions SA (PIRSA) deputy chief executive Tim Goodes believes SA’s recently formed partnership with global wine region powerhouses can only further benefit the state. Source, Naracoorte Herald.

4/05/2017: #V17 Biosecurity Tips
#V17 tip #14: Source your planting material only from a reputable registered grapevine nursery. #Vinehealth

International Wine Industry News

23/05/2017: Villa Maria launches flagship wine
New Zealand’s Villa Maria has launched its most expensive wine to date, naming its Ngakirikiri from the Gimblett Gravels as the brand’s new flagship wine. It will only be produced on good years, and the first release was it’s 2013 vintage, in 2016. Source, The Drinks Business.

23/05/2017: Hawkes Bay to host 2017 Air NZ Awards
Hawke's Bay, New Zealand's second largest wine region, will play host to the 31st Air New Zealand Wine Awards this November. The annual awards dinner will be held on Saturday, November 25, and will be attended by New Zealand's top winemakers and industry figures to celebrate the country's best wines. Source, The New Zealand Herald.

23/05/2017: Where Bacchus winegrapes come from
Yesterday, UK wine label Winbirri Vineyards was announced as best value white wine worldwide for their Bacchus wine in the Decanter Wine Awards. Here's what you can expect in a wine made from the Bacchus grape, following surprise success. Source, Decanter.

23/05/2017: Distribution deal with Watsons and Silver Heights
Hong Kong’s biggest wine retailer Watson’s Wine has taken on exclusive on-trade distribution rights of Chinese winery Silver Heights in Hong Kong and Macau. The Silver Heights label will be selling three of its wines retailing between $68 and $78. Source, The Drinks Business.

23/05/2017: Bosjes Estate opens in South Africa
Your first glimpse of Bosjes Estate just might jolt you out of your seat. Is that a spaceship in the middle of the Cape Winelands’ Breede Valley? No, the 90-minute drive from Cape Town hasn’t been playing tricks on your brain: South Africa’s newest hotel and restaurant is unlike anything the wine country has ever seen. Source, Robb Report.

23/05/2017: Direct to consumer wine sales is the future
And it has arrived. One result of prohibition was a general—and unconstitutional—ban on wineries shipping products across state lines direct to consumers' homes. A narrow Supreme Court decision in 2005 set the stage for dismantling that restriction, but at twelve years old, modern-day direct to consumer is a relatively new concept; its potential to increase winery revenue has yet to be tapped to the fullest. Source, Forbes.

22/05/2017: Laboratory made wines soon for sale
“They have ownership of the trademarks, but this isn’t a counterfeit business, the pitch is not to trick consumers they’re buying the real thing, the pitch is to have the same experience at a lower price.” The company plans to release its first wines – a sweet sparkler based on Moscato d’Asti, a pair of reds and a dry white – later this year. Source, The Guardian.

22/05/2017: English white named one of best in world
A £13 bottle of wine from Norfolk has been crowned one of the best in the world. The still Winbirri Vineyards Bacchus white wine won the platinum best in show medal for best value white wine made from a single grape variety at the Decanter World Wine Awards. Source, The Independent.

22/05/2017: Asking 11 Somms the most underrated wine region
So many fascinating wine regions exist in the world, producing exquisite wines of superior quality, yet they often get left in the shadows of their more famous counterparts. Vinepair took it to the pros and asked 11 sommeliers around the country which wine regions they deem the most underrated. Source, Vinepair.

22/05/2017: Should you hire a wine consultant?
Many employees dismiss consultants as people who “borrow your watch to tell you the time” — and then charge you for the privilege. But in the wine industry over two-thirds of wineries hire consultants to improve the quality of their wines. So, why do it? Source, Harvard Business Review.

22/05/2017: Indonesia jokes of certified Halal Aussie wine
Trade Minister Enggartiasto "Enggar" Lukita has floated an idea of requiring Australian wine sold in Indonesia to pass halal certification and use plain packaging in retaliation for the neighbouring country "undermining" the selling of Indonesian tobacco and paper. Source, The Jakarta Post.

22/05/2017: William Hill Estate sold, to be subdivided
A semirural subdivision is being planned for Dunstan Rd on the site of the former William Hill Vineyard. Alexandra property developer Russell Ibbotson is planning to develop the 16ha block into 20 roughly 4000sqm titles, with two areas in common of about 4ha each which would adjoin each of the properties. Source, Otago Daily Times.

22/05/2017: Tough season for New Zealand
Winemakers are still counting their gains and losses after a poor season in some regions. NZ Winegrowers chief executive Philip Gregan said he won't have all the figures until the end of June. "It's been challenging. The vintage will be smaller than the industry expected." Source, Stuff.

19/05/2017: Jackson Family purchase Brewer-Clifton
Jackson Family Wines is acquiring Brewer-Clifton, one of Sta. Rita Hills' top Pinot Noir and Chardonnay producers. Brewer-Clifton is the third Pinot Noir–based winery Jackson Family has purchased in the span of a year. Source, Wine Spectator.

19/05/2017: Constellation Brands is snooping
Constellation Brands might be sniffing around Ste. Michelle Wine Estates. Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, the umbrella for a group of premium brands, is owned not by a wine producer but by the tobacco giant Altria. Source, Forbes.

19/05/2017: LA wine store partners with Amazon
Californian wine store Mission Wines and Spirits has teamed up with Amazon Prime Now to launch a fast, one-hour delivery service. The wine retailer, which operates four stores in California, is offering the service out of its Glendale store in Los Angeles seven days a week, for $7.99, with a free two-hour delivery option. Source, The Drinks Business.

19/05/2017: Investing in fine wine
It was very gratifying last month to see Rhône lead the way in the Liv-ex 1000 after Amphora Portfolio Management had been trumpeting the wine investment attractions of the ‘La La’ sorority recently. The Champagne sector also outperformed Bordeaux, in fact over a 12 month period Champagne is the second best performing sector behind Burgundy, fully justifying exposure in a diversified portfolio. Source, The Drinks Business.

19/05/2017: Singapore's demand for NZ food and drink grows
Singaporeans have an increasingly wide range of options to choose from, in terms of food choices. New Zealand food producers are all out to lure local consumers with a keen focus on food safety and sustainability beyond just nutrition and taste. Source, Today Online.

19/05/2017: A look around Babich Wines
The west Auckland property, which stretches across 10 hectares is home to the company's headquarters, head office, cellar door, bottling plant and distribution centre, and has been since 1919. Babich also have four properties totalling 60 hectares in Hawke's Bay and six in Marlborough which supply 250 hectares of grapes. Source, Stuff.

18/05/2017: Irrigation investment to better manage fresh water
Additional grant funding of $26.7 million over the next three years plus a capital boost of $63 million towards irrigation investments in Budget 2017 will deliver economic and environmental benefits through better use of water, says Primary Industries Minister Nathan Guy. Source Scoop

18/05/2017: Topnotch Kiwi products on show in Manila
Top New Zealand companies showcased their products in Food Connection Manila, a one-day trade show held at the New World Hotel in Makati on Tuesday. “New Zealand products are known for their distinctive taste and quality and this is a great opportunity to showcase them to Filipinos,” New Zealand Trade Commissioner to the Philippines Hernando Banal said in a statement. Source Inquirer

18/05/2017: Terroir: The missing link
There is perhaps no more contentious term in the wine world than terroir. The mere mention of the word can send the listener into a state of uncertainty, confusion, trance, or agitation - even fury. Trying to nail down the definition of terroir can be just as challenging. Source Tim Gaiser, Master Sommelier

18/05/2017: Leafroll virus management
Through focused research, trial sites and a formalised Leafroll Control Protocol, the South African wine industry has made great strides to halt the spread of leafroll virus which poses a major threat to wine grape producers as it can shorten the lifespan of vineyards and deteriorate grape and wine quality. Source Biz Community

18/05/2017: Is Rosé a serious wine?
“Rosé does not merit serious tasting.” Such were the recent words of a fellow wine writer, one very knowledgeable about wine, and one whose opinion I respect immensely on general wine-related matters. Source Provence Wine Zine

18/05/2017: How higher alcohol levels are being addressed
Recently, I’ve begun to focus on this trend in alcohol content when selecting a bottle of wine. What an eye-opening experience. There is a definite trend toward higher alcohol levels in wines, especially those from several California producers of Cabernet Sauvignons and Zinfandels. Source Nick Antonaccio, The Examiner

17/05/2017: Sauv Blanc Day success
Wine Marlborough’s recently completed post event survey garnered a fantastic response from wineries, cellar doors, tour operators, restaurants, and bars to be involved in the inaugural ‘16 Days of Sauvignon’ in celebration of Sauvignon Blanc Day. Source, Winetitles.

17/05/2017: TWE in hot water after promoting drinking games
A promotion by Harvest Cidery’s distributor for the Scrumpy brand has led to a complaint to the Advertising Standards Authority. Winemaking and brand marketing company Treasury Wine Estates’s Facebook post alluded to a drinking game. Source, The Gisborne Herald.

17/05/2017: Wine industry to expect Brexit boom
There has been a significant rise in the sale of British wines overseas, with Richard Balfour-Lynn, wine producer at Hush Heath Wine Estate thanking Brexit for its impact. Source, Express.

17/05/2017: Russian wine fraud jailed in France
A Russian man has been fined and jailed for his part in selling counterfeit Domaine de la Romanée-Conti and Domaine Leroy. Aleksandr Iugov appeared in court in Dijon on 15 May and was sentenced to four years in prison. Source, The Drinks Business.

17/05/2017: Portugal's cork industry fights back
A decade ago, shares in the world's largest cork producer, Corticeira Amorim, didn't look like a great bet. That was then. The cork industry has since staged a comeback. Source, Yahoo News.

17/05/2017: Shanxi wine region
Known as a major coal mining province in China, Shanxi’s coal production has fuelled the country’s fast-track economic development for decades. Its ancient courtyards, traditional Yaodong or cave dwellings are dotted around the landscape of the arid Shanxi Plateau, part of the Loess Plateau in northwestern China. Source, The Drinks Business.

16/05/2017: Rothschild and Alvarez families launch new winery
In mid-June a new winery building, or bodega, will open in Rioja in northern Spain and house the production of Macán wines. This official opening marks a milestone after a decade and a half of focused collaboration between two renowned winemaking families. Source, Forbes.

16/05/2017: London Wine Fair looking to change dates
The London Wine Fair could ditch its traditional Maytime slot in the calendar and take place at either end of the year, according to exhibition director Ross Carter. Source, The Drinks Business.

16/05/2017: The problem with labelling wine 'organic'
Organic wine seems stuck in a paradox. It keeps growing in popularity, yet most consumers are disinclined to pay more for it. In the case of highly rated wines, those that are explicitly labelled organic often fetch lower prices. Source, The Globe and Mail.

16/05/2017: Swapping white for red and black
LangeTwins Collection of Family Wines is proud to announce a makeover of its Caricature Wine brand. This month, Caricature's 2014 Old Vine Zinfandel and 2014 Cabernet Sauvignon will trade in their signature white labels for a sleek black and red combination. Source, PR Newswire.

16/05/2017: Grape harvest growth for Delegat Group
Delegat Group recorded a small gain in its Australian and New Zealand grape harvest but has enough stock on hand to meet its projected sales targets for the coming year. Source, New Zealand Herald.

16/05/2017: High producing contract vineyard for sale
Zaccarat Vineyard in Renwick on the outskirts of Blenheim consists of some eight hectares of grape plantings – encompassing 6.55 hectares of Sauvignon Blanc vines and 1.43 hectares of Pinot Noir. The vineyard currently produces grapes for one of NZ's largest contract winemakers. Source, Scoop Business.

15/05/2017: Bordeaux 16 wines begin pricing
Bordeaux estates are starting to price their 2016 wines for release to the international trade at a higher level than the 2015 vintage, according to data from the London-based Liv-ex online wine exchange, reflecting the assessment of producers and critics that the vintage is potentially the best for at least six years. Source, Bloomberg.

15/05/2017: A new style of sparkling out of India
It’s the third Indian sparkling wine to come out of Maharashtra’s Nashik region and it aims to alter the way you down the bubbly by moving away from flutes and drinking it in tumblers straight up, on the rocks or with a slice of fruit, preferably orange. Source, The Indian Express.

15/05/2017: Destin Charity Wine Auction raises over $2.4m
The Destin Charity Wine Auction (DCWA) returned to the spotlight on April 29 for its 12th annual event, raising money for 15 children's charities in northwest Florida. More than 600 people attended and a total of over $2.4 million in live-auction bids was raised. Source, Wine Spectator.

15/05/2017: Hong Kong wine prices attract mainland residents
‘We see increasing numbers of mainland Chinese residents buying wine in Hong Kong to take advantage of the lower prices,’ says Guillaume Deglise, chief executive of Vinexpo. Source, South China Morning Post.

15/05/2017: Mahana Estate closes for winter
The destination wine estate was visited by Prince Charles and Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, at the end of 2015, but this year all visitors, royal or otherwise, will have to wait until next spring before they can sample the estate's food and wine. Source, Stuff.

15/05/2017: Kono NZ to strengthen bond with Japan
Kono NZ are pursuing a business delegation during Prime Minister Bill English's trade mission to Japan during the middle of May. The family owned Maori food and beverage producer are hoping to strengthen their relationships with Japan, who currently import their Tohu wine. Source, Winetitles.

12/05/2017: Will frost freeze the English wine boom?
The dead of a cold April night, and in vineyards across France and the southern counties of England, hundreds of bright fires are burning like beacons. The reason: Jack Frost, whose silent, icy fingers must not be allowed to grasp the tender new buds on which the year’s crop of grapes depends. Source, The Telegraph.

12/05/2017: Hannah Tovey now head of London Wine Fair
Hannah Tovey, the founder of one of the UK’s biggest drinks shows – Imbibe Live – is to take over from Ross Carter as head of the London Wine Fair, after it was announced yesterday that he would be stepping down from the role. Source, The Drinks Business.

12/05/2017: Wine country looks more like cannabis country
The grapevines that line rolling hillsides and sweeping valleys in Northern California’s wine country have become iconic – a symbol of the region’s rustic charm that helped California earn its reputation as a world-class wine and food destination. But winegrapes have new competition: weed. Source, The Sacramento Bee.

12/05/2017: Wineries find new ways to use grape waste
There are thousands of acres of wine grapes grown in California. After a harvest, tons of waste is left behind. Now, a growing number of wineries and companies are finding there is more to these grapes than just a good glass of wine. Source, ABC 7 News.

12/05/2017: New Zealand signs Trans Pacific Partnership
New Zealand Winegrowers warmly welcomes the government’s announcement of the ratification of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement. Source, Winetitles.

12/05/2017: Ohinemuri Estate winery is changing owners
The Karangahake winery estate Ohinemuri Estate is changing hands. After 28 years of hard work, Horst and Wendy Hillerich have decided to move on to new challenge and have sold the local estate. Source, The Country.

11/05/2017: "Essence" of oak
Your next glass of red wine could be aged in a metal or even plastic container using “wood in liquid form”‚ and you may not even know the difference.

11/05/2017: Ross Carter steps down from London Wine Fair
Having described this year’s fair as “the most challenging” of his career, Ross Carter has announced that he is to step down from his role as director of the London Wine Fair. Source, The Drinks Business.

11/05/2017: Debra Meiburg MW opens wine school
Debra Meiburg MW has announced the opening of her new wine school, MWM Wine School in Hong Kong, which promises to “reshape wine education into a total lifestyle experience”. Source, The Drinks Business.

11/05/2017: The Swiss are drinking less wine
The amount of wine consumed by Swiss residents in 2016 was down on the previous year, partly due to lifestyle choices and partly due to poor stocks of homegrown wine in the past few years, according to an official report. Source, The Local.

11/05/2017: Kerikeri winery up for sale
One of the country's northern-most vineyard/wineries is for sale. Marsden Estate, located near Kerikeri, is one of the region's biggest licensed function venues - with more than 85 per cent of its production sold either on-premise or through its cellar door retail outlet. Source, The Country.

11/05/2017: Alternative flavours from New Zealand
Like many vine-growing areas in New Zealand it benefits from the cooling maritime influence from proximity to the sea. This creates wines with a natural tangy fruity style that is very evident in white wines even those that are not Sauvignons. Source, The Herts Advertiser.

10/05/2017: Angry French winemakers trash Spanish wines
Dozens of winegrowers from France's Languedoc region swept through three supermarkets in Nîmes on March 30, in search of wine they believe is threatening their livelihood: low-priced Spanish wine. The vigilante vignerons climbed the shelves, smashing wine bottles and emptying boxed wine cartons onto the floor of the aisle. Source, Wine Spectator.

10/05/2017: Chateau China
Changyu, China's winemaking powerhouse, is building French-style chateaus and Italianate castles around the country, as well as an an entire "Wine City", to encourage the country's passion for the grape. Source, Bloomberg.

10/05/2017: Africa's world of wine
Europe, North America, and Australia may be at the top of the wine heap, but there is another world of wine - on the African continent. Wine is not high on the consumption list for locals but the country shows promise of growth. Source, Forbes.

10/05/2017: Algodon Fine Wines partners with Sherry-Lehmann
Algodon Wines & Luxury Development Group, a real estate development brand, has partnered with Sherry-Lehmann Wine & Spirits, a leading wine and spirits merchant to bring Algodon Fine Wines' portfolio of award-winning Malbec wines produced in the San Rafael, Mendoza, to the United States. Source, Market Watch.

10/05/2017: New head of Gisborne Winegrowers
Gisborne Winegrowers has new leadership and direction. Annie Millton from Millton Vineyards and Winery has taken over the reins of the organisation and Bobby Clark has been employed to help co-ordinate and promote the wine region. Source, The Gisborne Herald.

10/05/2017: What it takes to be a sommelier
Anong Klinyoo founded A-LLURE, a wine distributor that has made it possible for Kiwis to have an authentic Thai wine experience. She shares her thoughts and experiences with the industry as well as what she looks for when finding a match. Source, M2Woman.

9/05/2017: New Zealand School of Wine in Marlborough
Marlborough college students could soon be learning to make wine, tend to vines and the ins and outs of the commercial side of the industry that put the region on the map. The school would focus on wine production, viticulture practices and wine business. Source, Stuff.

9/05/2017: Promising vintage after poor start in Central Otago
Winegrowers are looking forward to a promising vintage in Central Otago as the grape harvest ends after a challenging growing season. A nip of frost and a cold summer some wineries are still picking their Sauvignon Blanc. Source, New Zealand Herald.

9/05/2017: Cool 2016 sees English wine yield dip 20%
Volumes of English wine dipped nearly 20% below the average production in 2016, due to a combination of cool conditions during the summer and a lack of moisture in the later part of the growing season. Source, The Drinks Business.

9/05/2017: Best wine of the 2016 Bordeaux vintage
Lafite has been declared the wine of the 2016 vintage by the trade in Liv-ex’s annual survey in what is also slated to be a successful campaign. The vintage was rated 95.9 overall. Source, The Drinks Business.

9/05/2017: Greek wine exports to Canada up 66%
Greek wine exports to Canada are up 66 percent since 2010 and are up 7.5 percent so far this year, a trend expected to grow further, the Greek embassy’s economic and trade affairs bureau said in a report. Source, Greek Canada Reporter.

9/05/2017: Beaujolais Nouveaux all year round
Marcel Lapierre was known for two things: producing delicious, aromatic Beaujolais wines on his family’s home turf of Morgon and pioneering a “natural” style of winemaking from the 1980s on. Source, Wine Spectator.

8/05/2017: Bordeaux frost damage up to 2 billion Euro
"For Bordeaux wines we estimate that the impact will be a loss of about 50 percent, depend on how many buds can regrow," said Bernard Farges, head of the Syndicat des vins Bordeaux et Bordeaux Supérieur. Source, Business Insider.

8/05/2017: $6k a bottle vineyard ravaged by frost
We've all heard that Bordeaux has been suffering frost damage in recent weeks. Some vineyards, including the one that produces grapes for wines like Chateau Petrus and other premium labels, have seen the worst frost since 1991. Although devastating, it could mean a higher demand for the 2016 vintage. Source, NZ Herald.

8/05/2017: Moderate wine intake has positive cognitive effects
Excessive alcohol consumption has a wide range of harmful health effects, but some previous research has indicated that a moderate intake of wine can have positive cognitive effects. A new study investigates why that may be the case. Source, Medical News Today.

8/05/2017: English bubbles export to US and Italy
A shipment of Exton Park will make its way to Modena, following a successful trade mission to Italy which resulted in a listing with family-owned importer Premiere Italia, following feedback from customers to its annual trade tasting. Source, The Drinks Business.

8/05/2017: Alibaba to supply Argentine wines to China
Argentine Malbec exports to Asia are expected to rise after China’s biggest e-commerce company, Alibaba, becomes the official channel to sell Argentina’s top agricultural products, following a memorandum signed between the Argentine government and Alibaba group. Source, The Drinks Business.

8/05/2017: Stink bugs brought to Marlborough
The number one bio-security threat to the Marlborough wine industry, a hitch-hiking stink bug, has made its way to the region - albeit safely inside gel filled containers. The bugs have been brought in to help identify them against other bugs in the region. Source, Stuff.

8/05/2017: One of the best wine seasons ever for Gisborne
The 2017 vintage growing season in Gisborne was one of the best experienced, with a challenging harvest at the end. Cloudy conditions made ripening a worry but phenological ripening was eventually achieved. Source, Gisborne Herald.

5/05/2017: Top 10 markets for NZ Sauvignon Blanc
To mark International Sauvignon Blanc Day (5 May), here's a closer look at one of the grape’s most prolific producers – New Zealand – and the markets that are moving this versatile variety. Source, The Drinks Business.

5/05/2017: Who's winning Sauvignon's popularity contest?
It is fair to say there is one grape variety that has well and truly achieved worldwide domination of the entire wine-drinking spectrum – Sauvignon Blanc. It has become the gateway grape variety for new wine drinkers and, while being a crowd-pleaser for many, also offers some of the finest, top-end dry white wines currently available. Source, Wine-Searcher.

5/05/2017: Bordeaux’s worst frost since 1991: What now?
Damage reports are coming in after 'black Thursday' and the impact looks severe, writes Jane Anson, who also considers how frosts might affect the Bordeaux 2016 en primeur campaign. Source, Decanter.

5/05/2017: Extreme weather and natural disasters
Mendoza and San Juan wine regions of Argentina face the highest risk of production losses due to extreme weather conditions and natural disasters, according to a wine index study by a multidisciplinary research team led by Dr. James Daniell of Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). Source, Beverage Daily.

5/05/2017: First Jobs: A toast to how winemakers got their starts
Not all of the world's most notable winemakers are to the manor born, and they are not all from France or Italy. Some took a more circuitous route to the vineyard and now toil anywhere from Napa Valley to New Zealand. Source, Reuters.

5/05/2017: A former arms dealer and a spectacular wine region
Two hours' drive out of Santiago, Santa Cruz is the beating heart of Colchagua, a region known for producing quality red wines, particularly Carménère and Cabernet Sauvignon, at astonishingly cheap prices. The man who put it on the map is Carlos Cardoen, a businessman alleged to have made a vast fortune supplying cluster bombs to Iraq. Source, 9Elsewhere.

4/05/2017: New Zealand export milestone
New Zealand exports to the USA continue to grow and have surpassed $500million for the first time. The increase is significant in comparison to the previous year, showing potential for further advancement. Source, Winetitles.

4/05/2017: Underpaid workers in Marlborough compensated
A Marlborough vineyard contracting company has been stung with a $40,000 penalty and ordered to pay back its workers for breaching employment standards. The company failed to provide 83 employees with minimum wage, correct holiday pay, or keep proper employment records for its workers.Source, Stuff.

4/05/2017: Taittinger plants first English vines
Planting has officially begun at Domaine Evremond, the vineyard land in Kent purchased by Champagne Taittinger and partners. Pierre-Emmanuel Taittinger says that he wants to build a winery and sees the area becoming a tourist attraction.Source, Decanter.

4/05/2017: Maria Garcia, the Wikipedia of wine
Since entering the wine world roughly a decade ago, Garcia, 34, has gotten used to defying expectations. The child of Mexican immigrants, she's petite, easygoing. She knew she had to work harder to be taken seriously. Source, LA Weekly.

4/05/2017: Sub zero wipes out vines across England
English wine producers are counting the cost after severe frosts gripped much of southern England last week, with sub zero temperatures wiping out more than half of some producers’ crops. Source, The Drinks Business.

4/05/2017: The new millennial wine destination
Valle is not a new wine region — some vineyards date from the 1920s — but this Mexican wine country is calling to millennials, with modern, design-y wineries and grit that can’t be found in Napa or Sonoma. Source, The New York Times.

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