By Andy Young
Casella Family Brands (CFB) has confirmed the purchase of 432 hectares of South Australian vineyards from Shaw Family Vintners.
While the financial terms of the deal have remained commercial in confidence, CFB has confirmed that the transaction includes 42 hectares of vineyards in McLaren Vale and 390 hectares in Currency Creek, plus winery, stock and trademark.
John Casella, Managing Director Casella Family Brands said: “This is primarily a strategic investment in a large quantity of high quality vineyards. As we currently buy approximately 40 per cent of the fruit supply from these sites it increases efficiencies and adds another dimension to our portfolio of already established vineyards.
“The fruit is well suited to CFB’s portfolio of premium wines characterised by having rich fruit flavours with intense colour; it therefore supports our ongoing premiumisation strategy and desire to create regionally distinct wines from premium South Australian wine regions.”
While already buying fruit from these sites, CFB’s South Australian Vineyard Manager, Peter Bird, said that with the company now owning the whole blocks, he hopes to further unlock the full potential of the vineyards.
“This acquisition makes perfect sense for CFB as it increases our grape to glass control and therefore quality assurance in our premium wines. Furthermore, it spreads the risk of fruit supply being adversely affected by climatic conditions elsewhere within South Australia,” Bird said.
John Casella added: “Our relationship with growers continues to be of paramount importance and they remain integral to all of our brands; Yellow Tail, Brand’s Laira, Morris Wines and Peter Lehmann Wines. As our company continues to grow, our grower supply base is also expanding. It is an exciting time for the company as we increase our footprint in South Australia through both owned and grower sourced fruit supply.”