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News posted on Tuesday, 21 April 2015

Fix My Tax campaign launched
A campaign to get Australians involved in the Federal Government's reforms to the tax system has been launched by the Distilled Spirits Industry Council of Australia (DSICA). The Henry Tax Review called for a more open, understandable and responsive tax system, but the DSICA has said that the current system is anything but, saying, "there are over sixteen different tax rates across two tax systems, depending on the type of drink, the size of the container and how much alcohol is in it."

Langhorne Creek Wine Show Luncheon
The Langhorne Creek Wine Show Luncheon is held on Friday May 1st in the Grand Marquee, overlooking the picturesque gum trees and vineyards at The Winehouse in Langhorne Creek. This ticketed event has established itself as the region’s premier event, attended by winemakers, industry members, wine enthusiasts, invited media and sponsors. Joining previous judges, wine writer Nick Ryan and Iain Riggs of Brokenwood, will be Margot Muir, manager of Edinburgh Cellars and judge for the last 3 years at the Royal Adelaide Wine Show.

Australians wrestle with water supply, climate change
On the heels of a study by Macquarie University's accounting and sustainability expert professor Roger Burritt, Australia's winemakers are wondering what they can do to conserve water in the midst of predictions about a dry future. According to a story on Australian eco website Sustainability Matters, there's a difference of opinion about the solutions. “There is clear gap between the wine industry's perception of the importance of water efficiency and wastewater production issues, and what the actual statistics reveal,” the article said.

Australian wine production faces difficult conditions
Difficult trading conditions have plagued the Wine Production industry over the past five years. Volatile demand from key export markets, a soaring Australian dollar for much of the period and rising competition from low-cost overseas wine producers have all hurt wine exports, according to IBISWorld’s updated report on the Wine Production in Australia. In the domestic market, producers have been forced to contend with changing consumer preferences and have lost bargaining power to retailers.

Wine industry comedy more than a good drop in the tourism ocean
SOUTH Australia and its iconic wine regions star in the second season of satirical comedy Plonk, heralding a new frontier of tourism. The web series Plonk takes an off-kilter look at the South Australia wine industry that is “part comedy narrative, part documentary”. The mockumentary follows the many misadventures of a film crew who are making a wine show – but the true star is the burgeoning wine and hospitality industry of Australia’s south.

Japanese consumers turning to New World wine, says report
Japanese wine drinkers are increasingly open to trying new styles and countries as the country’s wine market ‘comes of age’, according to a new report. Chile has been a major beneficiary of this maturing trend in Japan, with the country’s wines more than tripling their share of the market over the past seven years and overtaking France late in 2014, says Rabobank in its latest wine quarterly report. Australian winemakers are also seeking a greater presence in Japan.

Key says alcohol ad ban unlikely to go ahead
John Key says he would be "extremely surprised" if a far-reaching ban on alcohol sponsorship and advertising went ahead. A ministerial forum on alcohol advertising and sponsorship has put forward a raft of recommendations - including a ban on alcohol companies sponsoring sports teams and events. Organisers of major Marlborough events that rely on sponsorship from the wine industry, including the Forrest GrapeRide and Saint Clair Vineyard Half Marathon, have said their future would be threatened if the recommendations were implemented.

Boutique New Zealand winery’s grand plans for future
The Glover family in Marlborough are firmly making their mark as a small but mighty producer with an award-winning array of aromatics and Pinot Noir. Lucky Jack Glover has been surrounded by wine all his life. After being inspired by other Marlborough pioneers, his parents, Owen and Wendy converted their dairy farm in Dillons Point to vine in 1985 and initially planted Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir, Riesling and Chardonnay before turning their hand to Gewürztraminer in 1991.

Moët Hennessy in trademark dispute
Luxury wine and spirits producer Moët Hennessy, the drinks division of LVMH, is facing a trademark battle in California over its Chandon Délice sparkling wine brand. A lawsuit has been presented to a California federal court by Joseph Phelps Vineyards (JPV), which claims that Moët’s Délice brand infringes on its trademark over the name, granted to the California winery in 1987. Joseph Phelps Vineyards, based in the Napa Valley, claims to have sold millions of dollars worth its Delice wine over a number of years, and that the Moët brand – launched in November last year – is “confusingly similar” in its title.

Rioja 2014 official vintage rated ‘good’ with increased quantities over last year
The thirtieth officially rated vintage in Rioja was rated ‘good’ by the control board for the Designated of Origin (DOC) with quantities looking to be higher than the 2013 vintage. The DOC produced a total of 312.89 millilitres of wine from the 2014 harvest. Prior to being able to use the Rioja DOC, all wines are subjected to testing to ensure quality benchmarks are met. The control board of the Rioja DOC which is made of 140 tasters officially rates the wines of each vintage annually and this year sampled 4,383 wines.

Building wine online around the ‘buy’ button
Joe Waechter came to the CEO role at WineDirect, a Napa-based direct-sales technology company that offers software and services for e-commerce, regulatory compliance, marketing and winery management, five years ago after wearing hats in venture finance and global parcel delivery. For a decade before that, he was managing partner of California Pacific Capital, a early-stage-funding firm he started. And for 15 years leading up to that, he was president and CEO of DHL Worldwide Express.

Top 10 modern wine drinker stereotypes
The drinks industry today is flooded with tools and market analysis to help the trade understand more about their customers than ever before. Whether you’re revamping your pub wine list, hosting the ladies who lunch or refreshing City clientele, there’s data out there offering advice on how to satisfy just about any demographic or emerging trend you care to imagine. Sometimes though, it can be just as informative to ditch the research papers and simply take a look at the real life people around you.

AB Mauri



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