You may have heard of Australian Grape and Wine but did you know that they’re here to advocate on your behalf?
South Australian wine grape growers who contribute to the South Australian Grape Grower Industry Fund (and whose main business is grape growing) automatically receive the benefits of membership to Australian Grape and Wine through WGCSA.
Often people look at the number of wine-related industry groups and wonder why there's so many. In recent years there has been a concerted effort from many of these groups to consolidate their roles in the industry. This will reduce duplication of effort and deliver better outcomes to the people they represent.
Australian Grape and Wine has achieved this at a national level with the amalgamation of Australian Vignerons and the Winemakers' Federation of Australia.
Australian Grape and Wine represent wine grape growers at a national level. Their role is to help forge a political, social and regulatory environment that enables profitable and sustainable Australian grape and wine businesses.
What does this mean for wine grape growers? It means that they support growers by keeping on top of federal issues and are ready to respond with a single, united voice. If this doesn’t sound that important, then let me take you back to the time the whole live export industry was brought to its knees by one decision in Canberra. Cattle and sheep farmers didn’t have a national advocacy body proactively looking out for their industry and it was the farmers who ultimately paid the price.
So, although you might not always see clearly what AGW do, rest assured they are constantly working in the background to ensure that our Industry is well represented to government at a national level.
Two of the big issues Australian Grape and Wine are currently working on for wine grape growers is saving Prosecco from becoming a protected GI in the Australia-Europe Free Trade Agreement and the ever-present threat from the anti-alcohol lobby. I encourage all growers to learn more about these issues as potentially they could have a significant impact on your livelihood. You can find more details plus much more on Australian Grape and Wines activities here: www.agw.org.au
The Wine Grape Council of South Australia also continues to work closely with the South Australian Wine Industry Association to ensure both organisations are working to their strengths for the ultimate benefit of our wine industry in SA.
At a recent grower meeting, many growers spoke of the importance of advocacy and how organisations such as WGCSA and Australian Grape and Wine are an insurance policy. I believe that not only are we an insurance policy but an important asset for your business.
Of course, if you have any questions or suggestions for how WGCSA can help your business, don't hesitate to send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
It's exciting to see the vines waking up and the new vintage beginning – let’s hope we have no more frosts and can enjoy the spring sunshine!