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News posted on Thursday, 24 November 2016

D’Arenberg wine goes from sexist to award-winning
Earlier this year d’Arenberg wines released its premium wine The Old Bloke & Three Young Blondes and was immediately accused of being sexist. The company has now turned that criticism around after being awarded one of the most prestigious graphic design awards in Australia. The Australian Graphic Design Awards were held last weekend and d’Arenberg’s The Old Bloke wine was awarded a Pinnacle, an award which only goes to work that receives a unanimous high score from all judges. In addition, work awarded a Pinnacle is added to the collection of ‘glass mountains’, which acts as a historic narrative of graphic design in Australia.

Sirromet’s Green Light on Sustainability
Sirromet is renowned for producing award winning wine from Queensland’s Granite Belt but the winery takes just as much care with its waste management and impact on the environment as it does with its wine production, recently relocating and installing a new $700,000 waste treatment facility on the Mount Cotton property. The new fully computerized waste treatment facility has taken 15 months to install and has the capacity to process 50,000 litres of waste per day, with a holding capacity of 350,000 litres. Chief Winemaker and Project Manager Adam Chapman has developed Sirromet’s waste system and eco department over the last 17 years to ensure the winery is sustainable.

Powdery mildew app helps vignerons manage expectations
A free mobile app to help vignerons and winemakers quickly assess grapes for powdery mildew in the field is being made available to growers globally. Developed in South Australia by the University of Adelaide in collaboration with industry and Wine Australia, the app was initially launched for use exclusively in Australia ahead of the 2016 vintage. PMapp has been downloaded more than 1000 times and been well received by the Australian industry, prompting the construction of a training website to support the app and its international release this month.

Australian food and wine more affordable for Japanese
Japan's national obsession with food is paying dividends for Australian farmers. It took seven years for Japan to lock down a free trade deal with a major agricultural exporter such as Australia, paving the way for duty-free or preferential access for goods into the country. Japan is Australia's single biggest export market for beef and dairy products, and Australia's second-largest trading partner overall. It has made products like wine, nuts and beef even more appealing to the fastidious Japanese consumer, according to Austrade's Tokyo trade commissioner David Lawson.

Vinomofo Launches into TV AD Space
What happens if you give two wine-loving nerds a $25 million investment from Blue Sky Venture Capital? They catch a plane to New Zealand, rope in some renowned industry peeps and film an epic TV ad. It’s the age old business cliche – get a big investment and blow it on a big above the line campaign, but is it the recipe for success or one almighty mistake for one of Australia’s online wine retailer success stories, Vinomofo? “So we decided to make a big ad, which is a little scary for two guys who five years ago were sitting in their garage hand-packing wine boxes for their first eleven mofos,” says Andre Eikmeier, Vinomofo’s co-founder and joint chief executive.

New Zealand’s sustainable wine production shines in LA
New Zealand Winegrowers’ Sustainable Because video has received three category nominations at this year’s Annual Taste Awards in Los Angeles, California. “The short documentary created by WINERAM Productions cleverly encapsulates the reasons why sustainability is important to so many New Zealand wine producers” said Sarah Szegota, Communications Manager at New Zealand Winegrowers. “Not only are the category nominations testament to the skill of the team at WINERAM, but also to New Zealand’s winemakers and grape growers who are leading the charge in sustainable, organic and biodynamic wine production.”

Foley family wines warns of challenging year after earthquake
Foley Family Wines, which operates through brands including Vavasour and Martinborough Vineyard, has warned investors of a challenging period ahead, partly as a result of the Kaikoura earthquake. The quake caused significant damage to storage tanks at the Grove Mill winery in Marlborough, with some bulk wine lost. There was a small amount of damage to vineyards, with minimal damage to finished goods and buildings. Last week, the company said it was clear the damage would be more than its insurance excess of $1 million, although it has the resources to cover the extra cost.

Lucca Biodinamica brings sustainable energy to Tuscany’s wine scene
Lucca has recently moved up the ranks on the Tuscan tourist trail as more and more people hear about its intact walls, its curious tree-topped tower and its epicurean specialities from tordelli lucchesi to buccellato. But the city—and the rolling hills surrounding it—is gaining fame for another reason, all to do with its wine. Whilst Tuscany has long been known as a key wine-producing region in Italy, the wines of the Lucca province have largely been overshadowed by household names like Chianti and the Super Tuscans of Bolgheri.

Big wine company makes a big move in Oregon
Jackson Family Wines, the California-based company that has purchased four vineyards in Oregon since 2013, is building a 68,000 square-foot wine production facility in McMinnville, in the heart of the state’s Pinot noir region. The company’s presence in Oregon unsettles a few who wonder about its potential impact on the state’s unusual wine sector. Jackson Family is an international wine company with operations in Chile, France, Italy and Australia in addition to the U.S. In Oregon, the company has bought the Zena Crown, Gran Moraine, Penner-Ash and WillaKenzie vineyards and wineries since 2013.

Ste. Michelle asks court to dismiss Treasury Wine relief request
Ste. Michelle Wine Estates, (SMWE) has asked a San Francisco federal court to dismiss Treasury Wine Estates’s (TWE) request for declaratory relief that its planned use of “Stag” as a brand does not infringe trademarks or other laws. As previously reported by Wine Industry Insight, Ste. Michelle sued TWE in early October alleging trademark infringement and unfair competition among other charges. In response, TWE filed a complaint seeking a court declaration that their marketing efforts did not infringe SMWE trademarks.

Game of Thrones' wine is coming
If any group of TV characters have an excuse to drink, it's the cast of HBO's hit "Game of Thrones." Whether they're being tortured (Theon); marched naked through the streets (Cersei); losing a hand (Jaime); being forced into a creepy marriage (Sansa); dying and coming back (Jon); or on the run after killing dad in the privy (Tyrion); they deserve the strongest goblet of Dornish red that a sack of golden dragons can buy. Now viewers can join in at home. On Tuesday, HBO announced a partnership with Vintage Wine Estates of Santa Rosa, Calif., to release a "Game of Thrones"-branded Cabernet Sauvignon, a proprietary red blend and a chardonnay. Bottles will range in price from $20-$40 (£16-32, AU$27-54).

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