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News posted on Thursday, 2 March 2017

Wrong type of red flows for Jacob's Creek
The local arm of French drinks giant Pernod Ricard, which makes Australia's biggest-selling wine brand, Jacob's Creek, made an $11 million loss in its latest financial year even though sales climbed by 6 per cent to $550 million. Its directors said in a review of operations that revenue had improved by $32 million to $550 million for the year ended June 30, 2016, with a major contributor being the favourable exchange rate, which added extra momentum to export sales.

New policy blocks rogue employers
The wine industry has welcomed a new policy barring employers from recruiting migrant workers if they breach employment standards. Harsher penalties for employers that breach minimum standards have been welcomed by the wine industry after they were announced last week. As of April 1, employers that flout immigration and employment law will undergo a stand-down period where they will no longer be able to hire migrant workers.

Yalumba launches $350 ‘super claret’
Australia’s oldest family owned winery, Yalumba, is set to launch a $350 Cabernet Shiraz blend. The Caley, a blend featuring both Coonawarra and Barossa fruit, honours Fred Caley Smith, the grandson of Yalumba’s founder Samuel Smith; and horticulturist who had a profound impact on the development of Yalumba’s orchards and vineyards.

St Hallett on board with Virgin Australia
Virgin Australia and Barossa winery St Hallett have unveiled a wine specifically blended for consumption at high altitude. ‘The Duo’ will be served on board Virgin Australia flights in business class and can be sampled in Virgin Australia lounges. Atmospheric pressure and drier air conditions on board flights are known to affect the taste of food and beverages, so Virgin Australia worked with St Hallett winemaker Shelley Cox to create a wine that delivers balanced acidity and texture when consumed in the air.

The Great South of Western Australia
Rob Geddes recently had the chance to judge the Tall Timbers Wine Show in Manjimup and took the time to explore the region. His first impressions were fantastic. He said very few quality food and wine regions share the isolation of the deep south of Western Australia. It is not just distance but climate that makes theirs a special story.

Australia’s top female business trailblazers for 2017
In the lead up to International Women’s Day on 8 March, the Businesswomen’s Hall of Fame has recognised Australia’s female business trailblazers. The 2017 inductees include viticulturist Mary Retallack – who joins more than 200 women previously inducted into this respected community.

Foley Family Wines turns to first-half loss
Foley Family Wines (FFW), whose brands include Vavasour and Martinborough Vineyard, turned to a loss in its first half as it battled falling wine sales and the aftermath of last year's Kaikoura earthquake. The net loss of $323,000 in the six months to December 31 compares to a $1.6 million profit a year earlier.

British Airways serve English sparkling in First Class
British Airways is to serve Bolney Wine Estate Blanc de Blancs 2013 as it’s guest sparkling wine in First Class. It is the first English sparkling white wine to be served on the airline. "We are delighted to be adding Bolney Wine Estate’s Vintage Blanc de Blancs as our guest Sparkling Wine," said Colin Talbot, British Airways’ head of catering.

Grower of the year: Ridgeview Wine Estate
Mike and Christine Roberts were among the first to see southern England's potential as a world-class sparkling wine production region when they founded Ridgeview Wine Estate back in 1995. On a south-facing slope close to the South Downs in Sussex, the original vineyard yielded the estate's first wine in 2000, which was named Wine of the Year by the UK Vineyards Association, the first of many accolades.

Harvest excites, despite drought and fires
The quality of the 2017 grape harvest at Lourensford Estate is exceptional despite the impact of the ongoing drought in the Western Cape and the raging fires that swept through South Africa's Helderberg Mountains in January 2017, doing extensive damage to historic farms in Somerset West. Lourensford Estate cellarmaster Hannes Nel says the vines are healthy, the crop levels normal and the quality very promising despite the fires and the drought in the Western Cape.

White hot: Taking the temperature of Chablis
Everyone knows Chablis – and that’s its great strength, right? Well, it’s certainly one of the world’s most famous regional wine brands and, as a result, there’s barely a wine list or retailer without it. However, such global recognition can be a weakness – and that’s because it does invite discovery. There’s a sense among wine buyers that Chablis ticks a particular box – delicate Chardonnay – and that’s it. But there’s so much more to Chablis than that.


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Flavourtech


New Holland


Braud


Kauri


WID 2017