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News posted on Friday, 21 November 2014

When the kids move out – parents celebrate with bubbles
With silly season fast approaching, Mark Twain’s observation that “too much of anything is bad, but too much Champagne is just right” is as relevant as ever. Roy Morgan Research explores the bubbly world of Australia’s Champagne and sparkling wine drinkers.

Trunk disease will have a 'bigger impact than phylloxera', warns expert
Speaking at the International Workshop on Grapevine Trunk Diseases in Adelaide yesterday, international vineyard consultant Dr Richard Smart claimed that grapevine trunk diseases may have a greater impact on the world’s vineyard than phylloxera had previously.

Future wine leaders awarded national fellowship
Two of Australia’s up and coming wine experts were awarded the prestigious 2014 Working with Wine Fellowship at a black tie dinner at Yalumba Tuesday night. Brent Williamson from The Wine Emporium in Queensland and David Manning from Negociants Australia in Victoria were named the winners of the biennial education program.

Online solution to calculate smoke risks
Winemakers and vignerons in Western Australia have been using an online tool to identify the danger periods for smoke taint from burning off or bushfires. The Smoke Taint Risk calculator (STAR), launched late last year, was developed to reduce the incidence and severity of smoke exposure on grapes and wine.

A win for the Wine & Viticulture Journal
The 2014 Wine Communicator Awards, presented by the Wine Communicators of Australia, was held Wednesday night at Four Seasons in Sydney. Three of the five finalists nominated for best wine trade or technical writer have a strong ties with the Wine & Viticulture Journal, including editor Sonya Logan and contributors Anthony Hoare and Cathy Howard. After much deliberation, Howard, who also contributes to Grapegrower & Winemaker, received the award.

Friday Fun: 11 celebrities who make wine
What does a celebrity who already has everything do? Buy a winery, of course. Business Insider Australia rounded up a bunch of celebrity winemakers, some who have invested in their own vineyard and others who have teamed up with an already established winery to create their own unique collection.

World 'mother' grape saved from brink of extinction
A rare winegrape dubbed 'Casanova' because of its role in parenting so many of the world's leading varieties is one step further from extinction thanks to Swiss volunteers and a leading scientist. Once shunned, Gouais Blanc earned new respect 15 years ago when a study showed it was the "mother grape" of many varieties, including Chardonnay and Gamay.

Grapegrowers enjoy record harvest
Marlborough grapegrowers will pocket an estimated $64 million more this year than in 2013, despite being paid less per tonne for their fruit. Interim grape prices, released by New Zealand Winegrowers, show grapegrowers have been paid an average of $1667 per tonne of grapes this year, compared with $1677 per tonne last year - a decrease of $10 per tonne.

Boutique winery soars sky high
Boutique Central Otago producer Lowburn Ferry Wines has capped a string of elite awards for its wines over the past fortnight with the announcement that its Pinot Noirs will be served in British Airways' first class cabins from early next year. Lowburn Ferry Home Block Pinot Noir 2011 will be on board British Airways flights from March and vineyard owners Jean and Roger Gibson say the association with this premier airline represents a significant endorsement for Lowburn Ferry.

Wine brands need to 'get on top of Facebook', warns social media campaigner
Brands should “just be honest and sell their gear” on Facebook and other social media sites as forcing likes and comments turns off consumers. That's according to Jon Morter, the guy who's been dubbed a "social media hellraiser" by the New York Times. He's compiled a list of things brands should avoid doing on Facebook which he presented to delegates at this week's Wine Vision.

Bordeaux not ‘too expensive’, says CIVB vice-president
Bordeaux’s new advertising campaign has been designed to dispel the notion that the region is "too expensive" and "too complicated" according to Allan Sichel. “We want Bordeaux to be accessible and we are trying to correct two misconceptions,” he said. According to Sichel, the CIVB vice-president, consumer research had also shown that people feel they don’t have the required knowledge to drink wine from Bordeaux.

British Columbia wine industry slows rate of plantings
British Columbia’s wine industry grew slowly in terms of vineyard plantings over the past three years, yet the modest 4 per cent increase since 2011 is actually good news, according to the BC Wine Institute. A report prepared by Lynn Bremmer of Mount Kobau Wine Services in conjunction with the BC Grapegrowers Association showed the province grew with 10,260 acres of winegrapes and 254 wineries. In 2011 there were 9854 acres of vineyards and nine years ago there were 6632 acres and 118 wineries.

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