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News posted on Monday, 15 August 2016

Sustainable solutions for wine waste
Ways to recycle the vast amount of plant waste produced by the wine industry are under investigation by chemistry and biotechnology researchers at Swinburne. Grape pomace is the skins, pulp, seeds and stems remaining after the fruit has been pressed for juice. While pomace contains tartaric acid, a common additive used to balance the acidity of the wine, it is of limited nutrient value. It is also too hard for animals to digest so can’t be used as feed, and degrades too slowly to be useful as compost.

Vineyard hi-tech health
Innovative approaches to vineyard management will feature at a free National Wine and Grape Industry Centre (NWGIC) vine health workshop in Mudgee on Tuesday August 23. NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) viticultural development officer, Darren Fahey, said local vignerons will gain insights into the latest technology available to keep their vineyards productive and business on track.

ARLP takes leadership skills to a new level
As CEO of the Barossa Grape & Wine Association back in 2011, Sam Holmes didn’t seem like an obvious candidate to apply for the Australian Rural Leadership Program. He’s glad he did however, describing it as ‘an amazing opportunity’. ‘At the BGWA we were annually circulating and promoting the program to local wineries and grapegrowers and the feedback was always how amazing the program was and that it was actually life changing,’ he said. ‘When our Chair, Linda Bowes, encouraged me to make time for personal development, I applied and was lucky to be accepted.

Boutique winery Pondalowie Vineyards wants to relocate to the Surf Coast
AN award-winning winery wants to relocate to the Surf Coast this summer, where it would establish a new vineyard and cellar door facility. Premium boutique firm Pondalowie Vineyards, which has been based in Bendigo for almost 20 years, has lodged plans to set up a new home in Bambra. Owners Dominic Joseph and Krystina Morris said the 40ha site on Bambra School Rd would replace their Bendigo complex.

Big red from Down Under to be Graham Norton's Own
TALK show host and wine lover Graham Norton is releasing a South Australian Shiraz following the international success of his Sauvignon Blanc. The Irish comedian teamed up with New Zealand’s Invivo Wines in 2014 and has sold more than 500,000 bottles of their 2015 Graham Norton’s Own Sauvignon Blanc By Invivo in Ireland, the UK, Australia and New Zealand since its release in October.

One week till Bayer Young Viticulturist of the Year National Final
Just one week to go until the Bayer Young Viticulturist of the Year National Final 2016. This year there are five regional finalists, all strong candidates with great viticultural knowledge and a real passion for the industry, so it is set to be an exciting competition. The main day of questions and challenges will be on Tuesday 23 August at Villa Maria, Marlborough. "It’s a tough day for the contestants and they have all been studying hard over the last few weeks." says Nicky Grandorge, the National Co-ordinator of the competition.

Bars struggle to survive as New Zealand's drinking culture changes
The shrinking trend of social drinking is causing a massive shift in the hospitality industry. Brittany Baker reports on how pubs are coping with the change in order to make a buck. Hospitality guru Kymon Hill reckons if he had to start all over, he would choose not to serve booze. "If I were to give any advice to someone looking to open up their own place, I would say to keep it small and don't serve alcohol," he says.

Unmasking France’s violent wine extremists
You raise a glass of French wine and you think of the winemaker. You probably imagine someone with sun-soaked wrinkles, his hands as knotty as the vines he tends, sort of a knowing Mother Earth look about him. Maybe you picture him walking the vineyard, gently grazing his thick, worn knuckles against tender green leaves, cupping a cluster of violet-purple grapes, thinking of the vintage to come.

Wave of mergers and acquisitions sweeps U.S. wineries
Over the past several months, there’s been a drumbeat of big-name mergers and acquisitions in the U.S. wine industry. In April, Jackson Family Wines acquired Penner-Ash Wine Cellars for an undisclosed price and in May they bought Copain (price unknown). May also saw the purchase of a majority share of Far Niente Wine Estates (price unknown) by GI Partners, a private equity firm that also possesses a majority of Duckhorn.

Harvest starts with Italy confident of holding wine crown
Italy will retain its crown as the world's biggest wine producer this year, the country's main agricultural body predicted Friday as the first grapes of the 2016 vintage were harvested. Coldiretti, the farmers' and food producers' organisation, said variable growing conditions across the country would result in overall volume rising five percent on the total of 47.5 million hectolitres in 2015. Last year saw Italy overtake arch rival France in terms of total output by volume.

Sneaking fine wine across the Syrian border
It’s a typical wine tasting at the Château Marsyas in the beautiful Bekaa region of Lebanon. We are trying a French Cabernet after tasting a Merlot and Shiraz. Bottles and glasses are scattered on a wooden table in the heart of the winery, which houses a dozen stainless steel vats and hundreds of oak barrels. In all, we’ve savoured 17 wines.

Bordeaux vintners raise a glass to Brexit
A combination of the Brexit effect and rising demand from Asia has given Bordeaux wine a boost after years in the doldrums, with wine merchants reporting last month’s sales were the best for the past five years. While top Bordeaux wines, which include châteaux such as Lafite Rothschild and Margaux, are traded around the world, many are held in bonded warehouses in the UK and priced in sterling.

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