$2M Investment in Wine Tourism

Wines of Western Australia is the driving force behind a three-year International Wine Tourism strategy which seeks to increase international visitation to the state’s wine regions, increase visit lengths and spending in the region. The strategy has been endorsed by federal and state governments who, in conjunction with industry, have committed $2 million to the cause under Wine Australia’s Export and Regional Wine Support Package.

WoWA is the lead agency in the implementation of the strategy, supported by the Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Tourism Western Australia, and regional wine associations.

The strategy involves four key planks – inter-region collaboration with key sector partners, wine tourism product development, integrated communications and promotions, and regional partnerships and support programs.

WoWA is already working on the introduction of latest technology digital platforms created specifically for wine producers and regions, and assist consumers improve their navigation around wine regions with a full suite of interactive content. This technology, developed by Scoop Digital in Perth, is groundbreaking in its ability to integrate complex information and disseminate it to third party sites as well as providing smart interactive templates for application to wineries and wine regions. All content is being translated into Mandarin.

Gaps and shortcomings in the regional tourism offerings will also be audited as part of the strategy, with workshops, and information seminars planned to address these gaps and support cellar doors to build capacity.

A large part of the success of the strategy will rely on the fostering on inter-regional collaboration and alliances to cross-promote, extend opportunities and avoid duplication of resources. To this end, a Wine Tourism Alliance has been established, consisting of representatives from the wine industry, Tourism WA, DPIRD and regional tourism organisations. The Alliance will provide input to the strategy and ensure that interests of stakeholders are represented and information is dispersed to relevant networks.

The Wine Tourism Strategy is critically aligned with the existing Western Australian Wine Industry Strategic Plan 2014–2024 that aims to double wine exports to $100 million by 2021.

Funding for the initiative was announced today by Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Anne Ruston who confirmed the $1 million commitment to support the WA wine industry.

This is matched by a $1 million combined WA Government and WA wine industry investment, announced by WA Minister for Agriculture and Food Alannah MacTiernan, WA Minister for Tourism Paul Papalia and Wines of Western Australia.

WoWA CEO Larry Jorgensen said, “This is the first time that a strategy is in place which is the result of a collaboration with state and national agencies, and wine, food and tourism sectors.

This will provide a legacy for future collaboration long after the funding is depleted in 2020, which in the long-term, augurs well for ongoing efficient and effective implementation of resources.”

Further information:

Larry Jorgensen

CEO@winewa.asn.au 0448 884 161


WA excels in 2019 Halliday gongs

The Halliday 2019 Wine Companion was released last night with the usual intensity of excitement and curiosity, followed by proud announcements from all wineries in receipt of the highly coveted accolades.

In Western Australia, whilst a disproportionately high number are rated 5 ‘red’ stars and 90+ ratings, there were several awards worthy of special mentions:

‘Wine of the Year’ was awarded to Porongurup winery Duke’s Vineyard ‘Magpie Hill’ Reserve Riesling 2017 (99 points). This is the first time that the award has been given to a white wine and is testament to the quality of Riesling from mature vineyards in the Great Southern region.

‘Winemaker of the Year’ went to Julian Langworthy from Deep Woods Estate in Margaret River, who has consistently produced award winning wines for the Deep Woods portfolio, including a Jimmy Watson win in 2016.

Langworthy said, “I’m super excited to be recognized as Halliday’s Winemaker of the year! It is of course a team effort to make great wines and we are continually assisted in making them by the amazing place we live and call home – W.A.”

Best Chardonnay went to Denmark’s Singlefile Wines for their 2015 The Vivienne Denmark Chardonnay (98pts).

Best Cabernet Sauvignon of the Year went to Cullen Wines 2015 Vanya Wilyabrup Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon, which scored 99 points.

Best Semillon Sauvignon Blanc went to Stella Bella for their 2015 Suckfizzle Sauvignon Blanc Semillon.

Halliday’s Wine Companion is now available through bookshops and newsagents or direct from Hardie Grant Publishers.

Increase Your Capacity at Cellar Door

Tourism WA with Wine Tourism Australia and Destination Marketing Store is facilitating workshops in six regions from the 22nd of May to the 7th June designed to assist wineries build capacity in their cellar doors. The three part workshops will be delivered by Robin Shaw - Wine Tourism Australia, and Charlotte Prouse - Destination Marketing Store. Workshops run from 9am - 5pm. 

Full details here or email stephanie.frere@westernaustralia.com

Changes to Australia Post Parcel Service

From 1 July, 2018, Australia Post will no longer be offering Wines of Western Australia contract rates for untracked (BPA) parcel services.

Untracked parcels require more manual handling, and do not take advantage of Australia Post's automated network that has been designed to maximise efficiency, visibility and confidence in meeting delivery commitments. 

With the growth of eCommerce, there is also an increasing need to provide parcel senders and receivers with notifications and the ability to track the movement of each parcel. Therefore to help meet these growing demands, untracked parcel services will no longer be available on contract rates from 1 July, 2018.

To continue accessing the Wines of Western Australia's discounted rates you can transition to the tracked eParcel service. If you don’t currently have access to eParcel rates, please contact WoWA who will be able to support you in accessing the associations negotiated rates.

Once set up, you’ll receive an email with relevant login details and instructions on how to create shipping labels with eParcel. If using the online eParcel lodgement tool is not suitable for your business, untracked parcels can still be lodged on a Paper Mailing Statement across the counter at your nearest Post Office or Business Hub at our standard published parcel rates.

Please contact WoWA by 30 May 2018 to allow for the setup and transition to the new eParcel service by emailing winewa@winewa.asn.au.

2019 Nuffield Scholarships Open

Applications for the 2019 Nuffield Scholarships are now open. Farmers and farm managers between the ages of 28 and 45 are encouraged to apply for scholarship which this year carries the theme 'Produce Change'.

Nuffield Australia CEO Jodie Dean said the theme ‘Produce Change’ was inspired and encouraged by both the successes of existing Scholars and the next wave of farmers, who are redefining agriculture in an age of unprecedented technological advances and globalisation.

“Producing change goes straight to the heart of what we do at Nuffield. Nuffield Scholars research and deliver practical change that adds real value to farm businesses and the Australian community more broadly,” Ms. Dean said.

This year, there are up to 25 scholarships on offer, each valued at $30,000.

Each scholarship runs for 18 months and enables farmers to travel overseas for 16 weeks, to discover and learn from some of the best operators in the business, who are making a meaningful impact on their industry, and to share those learnings back home.

For more information or to apply visit the website here.

The press release can be downloaded here.

Non-Executive Directors sought for Wine Australia

Applications open for Non-Executive Board Positions

Wine Australia seeks applications for the roles of Non-Executive Directors of Wine Australia from suitably qualified and experienced persons.

In making these appointments, Wine Australia aims to create a balanced board which operates in a collegiate manner and which fosters the appropriate testing and challenging of matters relating to policy, governance, direction and performance of the organisation.

See position description here at Hender Consulting.

Applications in Word format only should be submitted by 13th April via email to The Presiding Member, Wine Australia Selection Committee: 22881@hender.com.au

Confidential telephone enquiries are welcome and may be directed to Julie Brennan at Hender Consulting on (08) 8100 8827.

Download candidate information here.


WA Preventative Health Summit

By invitation from Minister for Health, the Hon. Roger Cook, WoWA CEO Larry Jorgensen attended the recent Preventative Health Summit in March, convened by the Department of Health, Mental Health Commission and Healthway.

A wide range of issues were covered by invited speakers. See more information here and link to a video recording of each session here (session 3 is focused on alcohol and health) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TmfgcNnhrdM#action=share

In summarising the outcomes of the Summit Larry noted that, “the WA wine industry looks forward to working with the WA government to develop strategies that are targeted to achieve the best results in reducing harmful alcohol consumption while minimising unnecessary negative impacts on the broader community.”

2018 International Wine Tourism Strategy Released

Wines of WA has been developing a submission for the state grant under the Federal $50M wine industry support package (the Package). We worked with Regional Associations and their partners and stakeholders to identify key strategies and resulting projects to be funded via the competitive grants component of the Package.

The main aim at state level was to identify commonly held strategies and align these across regions. In doing so, there will be two benefits: economies of scale/reduction of duplication in implementing strategies/tactics and; greater collaboration between regions to amplify the impact of implementation of strategies/tactics.

Key in developing and supporting an aligned state-wide strategy were Tourism WA and Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development. Geographe, Blackwood Valley, Southern Forests and Great Southern have all aligned their strategies and support into the state grant. Perth Hills and Peel have provided input to the development and support the state strategy. SCOOP digital has been engaged as commercial partner to deliver a comprehensive digital platform available to all regions and producers to be integrated into their promotional activities aimed at driving visitation and spend in region.

Margaret River Wine Association and Swan Valley and Regional Winemakers, in collaboration with their regional partners and stakeholders, have also submitted applications for competitive grants under the Package. Wines of WA has worked with each region to ensure alignment with the state package. We will continue to do so as the strategies are further developed and implemented to ensure we amplify results to the benefit of the fine wine regions of WA.

The completed state grant application package was submitted last week. On confirmation of receipt of the application, Grant Programs Manager Justin Ross commented, “terrific job”.

We would like to thank all who have contributed to the process and in particular note the expertise and work provided By Agknowledge who were commissioned by Wines of WA to complete the state grant application and provide support to regions as required.

See the one-page strategy summary for the application here.

Please email CEO Larry Jorgensen for further information at ceo@winewa.asn.au

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug - Bio-Security Response

Live and dead stink bugs have been found in an imported container of electrical components from Italy in a warehouse in the Jandakot area.

The bug is a significant agricultural pest, however timely action indicates that the threat has been contained. The presence of the bugs was reported quickly to the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources who treated the infested goods and fumigated the warehouse.

The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development  (DPIRD) is undertaking further surveillance adjacent to the warehouse and in surrounding areas, including visual checks and the use of specialised traps and lures.

DPIRD has issued a media statement which can be downloaded here.

Australian Vignerons response can be viewed here


Top Five Points about WET Reform

The new WET legislation will be enacted from the 2018 vintage, so wine producers need to be aware of their obligations now.

South Australian wine industry legal specialists, Finlaysons, have identified the key issues around the reform which are summarised below:

1.     New eligibility criteria for claiming producer rebates and new quoting/WET credit rules will apply to the 2018 vintage.

2.     New 85% ownership requirement will apply to 2017 and earlier vintages sold after 30 June 2023.

3.     Grapes purchased on a ‘retention of title’ basis will not satisfy the 85% ownership requirement.

4.     Supply chains involving multiple wholesalers may prevent producers claiming the rebate.

5.     Pooling of grapes will also likely prevent producers claiming the rebate.

Details around each of these points are contained in the document link here.

Producers seeking further assistance can get in touch with Tax and Revenue Partner at Finlaysons, Matthew Brittingham on 08 8235 7458.

Further information is also available at WFA website here