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Cowra sustainable wine partnership launch

Members of the Cowra Wine Region (CRVA) will celebrate their annual Food & Wine extravaganza on Saturday, 3 November 2007 featuring the Cowra Cork and Fork.

At this years event the CRVA will launch the much anticipated Cowra sustainable wine partnership as well as the new CRVA Logo.

The partnership has been developed over a twelve month period and is a practical guide for growers and friends in the region to reduce their impact on the environment while improving wine quality. The partnership brings together government and private organizations. The CRVA has developed a simple vision; 'To produce wines of regional character with the least environmental impact of any wine region in Australia'.

Local grower Tom Ward describes the response of the CRVA members as being unanimous. “The drivers of the plan are all young players in the industry; the average age of the driving group is around 35. We are thinking about how to change and adapt to our circumstances and how to make the most out of the tough conditions. We are all here for the long term and this partnership is to help us ensure that happens,” Ward said.

The plan sets out strategies and actions to be undertaken by the CRVA. Many of the actions are already underway and the plan is set to be updated quarterly.

Several highlights of the plan include;

• Using paper waste to mulch under the vines reducing herbicides and water use

• Utilizing local stock to graze the vineyards instead of herbicides

• Developing a target for chemical use reduction

• A management plan to reduce soil degradation and water use

• A target for regeneration of native trees and increasing biodiversity.

The Cowra Wine Region is a predominant force in the wine industry producing up to 25,000 tonnes of grapes annually with over ten cellar doors in the surrounding areas. This year alone local wineries have taken out some of the most prestigious awards confirming the strength and quality of the Cowra region.

For further information contact Tom Ward at ">t or 0409 246 609 or Joedy Lee at ">c or on (02)6342 1977.

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