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Wine Australia invests record $AUS 79 million in grape and wine sector in 2019–20

Media Release
Monday 1 July 2019

 

Wine Australia invests record $79 million on behalf of grape and wine sector in 2019–20
Wine Australia will invest a record $79 million on behalf of the grape and wine sector in 2019–20, investing
in research, development and extension (RD&E), market development and export regulation according to
its Annual Operational Plan 2019–20 (AOP) released this week.

 

Wine Australia’s Chief Executive Officer Andreas Clark said the sectors’ unwavering focus on improving
perceptions of Australian wine internationally was paying dividends.

‘In the period from 1 July 2015 to 30 March 20191, total free on board (FOB) export value has increased by
47 per cent from $1.9 billion to $2.78 billion. At the same time, the average value of all exports has
increased by 31 per cent from $2.61 per litre to $3.41 per litre with value growth in all price segments.
‘This increased average value of exports has been accompanied by a 32 per cent increase in the national
average wine grape purchase price from $463 per tonne in vintage 2015, to $609 per tonne in vintage
2018.

 

‘The health of the sector reflects Australian grape growers’ commitment to producing quality grapes
sustainably and efficiently and our exporter’s commitment to growing markets by investing in promotion and
market presence.’

 

Mr Clark said Wine Australia was now in the fifth year of Strategic Plan 2015–2020, which as the preceding
figures testified, had delivered on its objectives. Consultation would soon begin with the grape and wine sector
to inform the development of the next five-year strategic plan. Wine Australia was working with Australian
Grape and Wine Inc, which was developing an overarching long-term plan that would guide the objectives
of Wine Australia’s five-year plan.

‘We’ll be holding consultation meetings in each state and grapegrowers and winemakers will have the
opportunity to provide their opinions on what our RD&E, marketing and regulation priorities should be over
the next five-year period’, Mr Clark said.

 

The record expenditure reflects additional revenue from the Australian Government’s $50 million Export
and Regional Wine Support Package, the administration of the $10 million Wine Tourism and Cellar Door
Grant and a drawdown of reserves to support RD&E expenditure.

 

Marketing priorities

 

In 2019–20, Wine Australia will continue to deliver commercially relevant marketing activities that support
Australia’s fine wine story to increase demand and the premium paid for all Australian wines.
All of the engagement will be enhanced by the award-winning Australian Wine Discovered educational
program and the new consumer website www.australianwine.com.

 

The flagship activity in the UK and Europe will be the Australia Trade Tasting, Wine Australia’s major annual trade
engagement that is the largest annual exhibition of Australian wines in London, Edinburgh and Dublin.
Export and Regional Wine Support Package priorities

 

Supported by the Government’s $50m million Export and Regional Wine Support Package, Wine Australia
is investing $8 million in Far From Ordinary in the United States of America (USA), our single-largest
marketing campaign ever undertaken. Activities will kick off with the Australian Women in Wine Awards in
New York and culminate in Australia Decanted at Lake Tahoe, where the immensely successful event of
2018 will be revisited in a nuanced, curated showcase of the best Australia has to offer. Trade activities will
be supported by consumer and retail activations and distributor support to ensure that we deliver the most
impactful program possible.

In China, key activities will be Prowine China in November 2019, the key trade show in the region, the
Chengdu Food and Drinks Fair in March 2020, Vinexpo Hong Kong in May 2020, and the 9th China
Roadshow, where Wine Australia will take more than 80 Australian brands to three ‘tier two’ cities and one
major tier one metropolis.

Greater engagement with consumers will be a significant focus, with the Australian Wine Discovered
education platform helping to engage and educate consumers directly and through the trade. We will also
engage with consumers through our new consumer website www.australianwine.com.
The Wine Export Grants within the $50m Package are expected to be fully subscribed by late 2019, with
State and Competitive Grant projects required to fully acquit funding by April 2020.

 

RD&E priorities

 

Wine Australia will continue key investments in RD&E to build a better understanding of how grapevine
genetics interact with the environment and how to optimise expressions of terroir through viticultural
management.

 

Digital technologies will be evaluated in a range of projects using sensor technologies to assess disease,
nutritional status, grape canopy structure, crop condition, quality and yield.

 

Wine Australia is also managing a project to ensure that grapevine germplasm resources are preserved
through a national collection that will ultimately allow greater commercial access to known clones and varieties.
Winery performance will be the focus of investment in new or enhanced technologies and processes to
improve winery efficiency, including facilitating the rollout of a new activity-based costing tool that will
provide cost benchmarks.

 

Regulatory priorities

 

The new financial year will see the launch of Wine Australia’s new wine export approval system, the Wine
Export Licensing and Approval System (WALAS), that will deliver exporters enhanced access and provide
them with greater flexibility to manage their export and shipping details 24 hours a day.
WALAS will be integral to ensuring that Wine Australia continues to meet expectations on service and
turnaround on wine export approvals as we continue to see growth in licensing applications, shipping
approvals and certification requests.

 

The coming year will also see the development of the Wine Export Label Intellectual Property Directory.
In 2019–20, we will help maintain public trust in our wine by auditing the records of up to 300 wine
producers. We will concentrate on the areas of highest risk, in particular the wine regions and varieties that
are

 

in strongest demand.

Wine Tourism and Cellar Door Grants

 

Wine Australia’s 2019–20 budget includes $10 million dollars for the Wine Tourism and Cellar Door grant
scheme which it is administering on behalf of the Australian Government. Applications for round 1 (based
on wine sales during the 2018–19 financial year) will open on 1 July 2019 and will close at 5.00pm ACST
on 30 September 2019. For more detail see https://www.wineaustralia.com/wine-tourism-and-cellar-door-grants.