February (No. 493)
Wine Australia wraps up
19,000 visitors sampled the offerings of 4000 Australian wines during Wine Australia 2004 in November.
“Although the overall attendance was slightly less than anticipated, due we think to the unseasonably hot weather over the weekend, we welcomed some outstanding guests who demonstrated a real passion for our industry”, said Stephen Strachan, chief executive of the Winemakers’ Federation of Australia. “The calibre and interest of our visitors this year was really pleasing.”
The level of international interest in particular highlighted how importantly overseas markets continue to regard Australian wine.
“It was great to see an unprecedented number of international visitors come to Wine Australia. Their attendance is essential in helping to open new markets and to ensure that interest in our wine industry translates into continued wine export strength.”
The Vineyards Association of Tasmania arranged a Tasmanian stand for Wine Australia and felt the State’s wines were well received.
“A common remark from the other wineries attending was the density of the traffic in the vicinity of our stand, and we took this as a measure of interest in Tasmanian wines in general,” wrote VAT president, Stuart Bryce, in the VAT November 2004 newsletter.
“Another comment was the degree of cooperation between the Tasmanian producers, their willingness to refer visitors to their neighbours and to wineries in Tasmania which were not represented at the event.
“I believe it is this level of cooperation that sets Tasmania apart from other wine-producing States,” he wrote.
This year Wine Australia returned to the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre at Darling Harbour. The exhibition spanned 15,000 square metres in three halls and accommodated 475 exhibitors with individual and State presentations representing most regions across Australia.
“The move back to Darling Harbour was seen as positive by the exhibitors, giving them better amenities, access, ambience and service all around,” stated organiser John Kelly, executive director of Exhibition Organisers Pty Ltd.
“With our sights now set on Wine Australia 2006 my team, together with our colleagues at the Winemakers’ Federation of Australia are already considering early plans for Wine Australia 2006, which we plan to hold again at Darling Harbour but in the more favourable time period for trade, in July.”