Wine Australia have welcomed the appointment of six non-executive directors to its board.

The Board additions were announced by David Littleproud MP, the Minister for Agriculture and Northern Australia.

John Lloyd and Justin Brown are two new directors, joined by Cath Oates, Catherine Cooper, Frances-Anne Keeler and Mitchell Taylor, who were all reappointed.

In a statement Wine Australia said these appointments would bring “extensive experience in agricultural and horticultural research, innovation, trade and market access issues”.

Wine Australia’s Chair of the Board, Dr Michele Allan, said: “It’s a critical time for Australian wine and these six appointments combine the necessary skills to represent the needs and interests of our sector.”

Lloyd previously served as the CEO for Horticulture Innovation Australia for a decade, during which time he was responsible for steering the peak research and marketing body through major changes and growth for the sector, said Dr Allan.

Brown is a former Ambassador to Belgium, Luxembourg, the European Union and NATO, who was awarded the Public Service Medal in 2015. Brown was acclaimed by Dr Allan for “pursuing, protecting and promoting market access opportunities for Australian industry on a day-to-day basis”.

The outgoing directors are Brian Croser AO (former Wine Australia Deputy Chair) and Dr Mary Retallack.

Dr Allan said: “We are deeply grateful for their commitment to the sector. I know they will remain deeply engaged with the Australian grape and wine community and I wish them well in their future endeavours.”

Dr Allan added that she believes the incoming directors will allow Wine Australia to better prepare for the future.

“Their knowledge and skills will be of great benefit to the Board. Particularly in the current trading environment, as we focus on positioning the sector for growth and profitability, market diversification and innovative techniques that help tackle everyday vineyard or winery challenges,” she said.

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