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News posted on Tuesday, 1 November 2016

ACCC report reinforces concerns over Hort Code failings
"WASTE of space" was how one South Australian grower described the Horticulture Code of Conduct during the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's (ACCC) regional engagement workshops earlier this year. A Tasmanian grower representative suggested there had been no genuine change in industry practice since the Code’s introduction, while a New South Wales grower representative said he didn't know a grower that operated with a Horticulture Produce Agreement, something that is required under the code. The comments came out of the ACCC's report, "Perspectives in horticulture and viticulture – Industry views on competition and fair trading issues", released this week.

Pier One Sydney Harbour NSW Wine Awards Results
The 2016 Pier One Sydney Harbour NSW Wine Awards has just announced the main Trophy winners for this year’s Awards and yet again the results have excited judges, industry professional and wine lovers alike. 2016 Chair of Judges PJ Charteris commented on how the overall medal count was up again this year and said, “The most exciting thing was seeing the diversity in region and variety. NSW winemakers are having a red-hot crack at producing high quality wines from old and new varietals and this is a tribute to the passion and strength of the NSW wine industry.”

The Black Sheep of McLaren Vale takes two of the big ones!
Hugh Hamilton Wines have topped the annual McLaren Vale Cellar Door of the Year awards on October 26th, taking out two awards. They have been awarded the top gong Cellar Door of the Year award and an individual recognition was awarded to Sabine Delago, one of their team members. Sabine Delago was announced as one of four Cellar Door Stars of the Region. Sabine has been a part of the Hugh Hamilton team for over 8 years and is known for her warm welcome, her genuine wine knowledge and her passion for McLaren Vale and the wider Fleurieu region.

Going back to their roots to make corker vineyards
Wine Australia has released a new online tool to help winegrape growers determine the rootstocks that will best suit their vineyard, based on the most recent research. The Grapevine Rootstock Selector brings together knowledge from Australian and international research about the specific characteristics of different rootstocks into one independent resource for the Australian grape and wine community. Wine Australia general manager research, development and extension Dr Liz Waters said the Grapevine Rootstock Selector is a free tool that helps to share the insights gained from rootstock research in a simple format.

Life returns to wine grape prices
The price of wine grapes in Australia is improving after some years in the doldrums, thanks to China's growing demand for imported wine. Agribusiness banking specialist Rabobank says grape prices, especially for red grapes in premium growing regions, have rebounded from their low point in 2011. The lower Australian dollar and relatively constrained production of grapes in Australia and overseas have also helped lift prices.

New Zealand’s top drops showcased to Australian trade
Trophy winning wines from this year’s Air New Zealand Wine Awards will be the focus of two workshops for Sydney and Melbourne wine trade next month. Hosted by Chair of Judges and Master of Wine Michael Brajkovich, guests will be among the first in Australia to sample the winning wines from each category. Following three days of judging, 91 gold medals were awarded across a number of varieties and regions with the ‘best of the best’ elite gold and trophy winning wines revealed at a black tie dinner in Auckland on 12 November.

New Zealand's Wine Future Bright and Red
While everyone loves Sauvignon, other varieties are eclipsing the perennial star of New Zealand's show. There is a quiet revolution going on in New Zealand wine and, for once, Sauvignon Blanc is not at the center of the story. The announcement of the gold-medal winners for the Air New Zealand Wine Awards, the country's top wine competition, proved that, as far as quality is concerned, Pinot Noir rules the roost. Despite making up a little more than 8 percent of the country's plantings, Pinot Noir accounted for 17 out of 91 gold medals awarded, with Sauvignon Blanc second with 14 golds and Chardonnay picking up 13.

Wine continues to flow in Hong Kong
Consumers defy city’s retail woes to show strong appetite for wine and liquor, according to sellers at the city’s largest ever Wine and Dine Festival on Friday. The event, which popped open on Thursday and will end on Sunday, has seen Hongkongers flock to the Central harbourfront after knocking off work and ­exhibitors report steady growth in their business. Analysts say alcohol historically has held up well in weaker economic times, as gloomy employees keep drinking in the face of an uncertain outlook – though they might settle for cheaper brands and drink at home instead of while dining out.

China’s wine imports up nearly 20%
China’s wine imports continued to grow in both volume and value terms in the first nine months of the year, continuing an upward growth trend, according to the latest figures released by the China Association for Imports & Export of Wines & Spirits. The country imported US$1.77 billion worth of wines during the period, representing a 19.1% year-on-year increase. Its total volume of wine imports also jumped 14.42% to over 464 million litres from January to September, said the official national trade association.

Chile UK's number five wine supplier as rivals falter
Chile has leapfrogged Spain and South Africa to become the UK’s fifth largest wine supplier, while New Zealand and Argentina continue to enjoy surging sales. New IRI figures for the year to October 8 show that Australia’s prolonged period of growth is over, with sales down 0.9% to £1.15 billion. Second placed Italy continues to fall, with sales down 7.9% to £642.7 million. The figures are for still wine only, so they exclude Prosecco, which is the real star performer in the UK trade.

Oregon grown, California owned: pinot noir's future
In Oregon wine country, David and Goliath might not be enemies. Instead, think of them as business partners. Bernard Lacroute, the former owner of WillaKenzie Estate and a seasoned winemaker, sold his vineyard and winery to the estate-owning behemoth Jackson Family Wines on Oct. 5. Jackson Family Wines, known for grocery store favorite Kendall-Jackson chardonnay, owns wineries and vineyards across the world from Australia to California.

On the run-up to SIMEI, wine technology excellence
SIMEI, the world’s leading trade fair for machinery and equipment in the wine-making and bottling sectors, is preparing for its 27th edition to be held from 11 to 15 September 2017 in Munich (Germany). Many new features on the programme, starting from the location. From Italy, where it will be returning in 2019, it is moving to Germany in 2017 to build a profitable, reciprocal working relationship with drinktec, the international fair of reference for equipment in the beverage and liquid food sectors. This alliance will create a unique platform that will offer operators and visitors the best of technology for the industry. Info: www.simei.it/en

AB Mauri



WID 2017