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News posted on Wednesday, 3 December 2014

December 2014 Grapegrower & Winemaker magazine out now
The December 2014 issue of Grapegrower & Winemaker is out now and available online for all subscribers. ’Tis the season to celebrate so sit back with bubbles and join us as we discuss the latest in bird control; analytical services; oak; harvesting; and law among others.

NSW growers wiped out by storms can apply for financial help
Loans of up to $130,000 will be available for growers impacted by a storm that decimated crops in south-west New South Wales last weekend. The state government declared the storm a natural disaster, after it wiped out 1,000 hectares of wine and table grapes, and nearly 800 hectares of citrus in Sunraysia.

Wine Tasmania joins bid to reform WET rebate
Tasmania's wine industry has joined a national campaign to keep, but reform, the Wine Equalisation Tax (WET) rebate in a bid to stop tax increases crippling the island’s small cellar-door operators. The WET entitles wine producers to a rebate of up to $500,000 each financial year but there is now talk from Canberra about changing the system.

Delegat's to push into China next year as part of global expansion
The Delegat's Group (DGL), plan to put a toehold in China next year as part of a long term goal of boosting overall sales by 52 per cent in the next five years. The Auckland-based company set up an in-market sales team in Japan this year and plans to do the same with three to four staff in Shanghai next year to push both its Oyster Bay and Barossa Valley Estate brands.

Overpriced wine in UK mainstream faces ‘grim process of elimination’
Wine Intelligence warns that a bifurcating UK wine market means that more consumers are trading up, while more are also trading down, and predicts this will leave scant space for the mediocre in-between. In Wine Intelligence's newly released Wine Market Landscape report for November 2014, Richard Halstead, chief operating officer, says that more of the UK's 23.7 million regular wine drinkers are willing to buy wine at £8 (A$14) per bottle.

Georgia government backs wine industry revival
Georgia's government has agreed to fund a new winery that is set to be one of the country's largest, as part of plans to overhaul the sector and increase exports. A ministry of agriculture spokesperson said government funding will be provided to build a new winery in the area of Keda, Adjara.

Commercial release of Barossa Valley Heritage Shiraz clones
South Australian Research and Development Institute (SARDI) has turned scientific trials into an industry reality with the commercial release of Heritage Shiraz clones in the Barossa Valley. The selection of these clones began back in 1986, initiated by industry stalwarts Ross Heinze, Richard Cirami and Dr Michael McCarthy in conjunction with state vine improvement organisations.

Woolworths Liquor buys China's Summergate
One of China’s major wine importers, Summergate Fine Wines & Spirits, and its retail subsidiary Pudao Wines have been bought by Australian drinks retail giant Woolworth’s Liquor Group (WLG). The deal marks the combination of Summergate’s Chinese market network and high quality wine and spirit agency portfolio, which includes producers such as Domaine Armand Rousseau, Hugel & Fils, Ridge Vineyards and Dominio de Pingus, with the retail scale offered by WLG, part of Australian supermarket group Woolworths.

Moët Hennessy maps out ambitious plans for Napa’s Newton Vineyard
Moët Hennessy’s Estates and Wines division is targeting a renaissance for its Newton Vineyard winery in the Napa Valley, focused on boosting the quality of its Cabernet Sauvignon Unfiltered. While Newton has had ample success in recent years with its Chardonnay Unfiltered, Jean-Guillaume Prats Estates and Wines chief executive officer, said there is plenty of potential to take the Cabernet program to new heights.

Among the vines of Nelson
Tranja Fry of Fossil Ridge Wines in Nelson produced some freshly roasted macadamia nuts in the mild climate of her Tasman Bay vineyard. The sunny, north-facing region, sheltered by mountains to the east, west and south, besides being home to artists and food producers also boasts a number of wineries and craft brewers.

Champagne leads fine wine market
The Liv-ex 100 index showed a rise for the fourth month in a row in November, with Champagne top of the movers as Christmas approaches. The Fine Wine 100 index, which follows the 100 most sought after wines in the secondary market, rose 0.3 per cent in November, as the market continues to edge slowly upwards after 17 months of quite serious decline.

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