Wine Australia has revealed its plans for an ambitious year ahead with 2018-19 representing the fourth year of its five-year Strategic Plan 2015-2020.
With the total free-on-board export value of Australian wine having increased by 39 per cent from $1.9bn to $2.65bn over the past three years, Wine Australia’s CEO Andreas Clark has said that the sector is in its strongest position for many years.
“Much work remains ahead, however, to ensure that the sector is globally competitive and Wine Australia will invest $67.8 million in an ambitious agenda for 2018–19, with the support of the Australian Government’s $50 million Export and Regional Wine Support Package,” Clark said.
“We have a packed program of activities, including significant investments in the USA, which will be spearheaded by the Australian Wine Made Our Way campaign.
“Australia Decanted (22–26 July) will flow into Aussie Wine Week in September 2018, and then consumer activations in New York City will build into a month-long celebration of Australian wine across the US market in September 2019.”
In terms of research, development and extension, Wine Australia will build on its strong relationships with research providers.
Clark added: “Over the past three years of our Strategic Plan, our research has supported the development of digital technologies in a portfolio of projects using sophisticated sensors to quickly and accurately assess disease, nutritional status, grape canopy structure, crop condition and quality parameters.
“During the coming year, we plan to deliver a suite of tools arising from this research that can be used in the vineyard and winery. We will also extend information about how to implement research findings on objective measures for grape quality that will improve the efficiency of grape and wine production.
“We will continue our strong focus on biosecurity research, looking at both endemic and exotic threats, and practical and effective ways of mitigating and managing those threats.”
Clark also said that having processed a record number of export approvals in the 12 months to May 2018, Wine Australia plans to introduce a new digital approval system in 2018-19, which will improved the application process for wine exporters and that a major training and education plan will be delivered before the new process is rolled out “to ensure a smooth transition”.