Viticulture

Villa Maria creeps up list of Most Admired Wine Brands in the World

[18 March/Stuff NZ] Villa Maria was named in the top three Most Admired Wine Brands at the Drinks International Ceremony in Germany. This is the first time a New Zealand country has made the top three since the establishment of the award in 2011. Helen Morrison, Villa Maria Malborough Senior Winemaker reported that the win...

Autumn heatwave welcomed by Waikato grape grower

[07 March/Stuff NZ] Waikato’s largest winemaker Vilagrad has welcomed the Autumn heatwave, with their vines receiving more hours of sunshine and intense flavours developed in the grapes. According to Winemaker Jacob Nooyen, hot dry days and cold nights have resulted in the vineyard starting its harvest two weeks early. Hot days increase sugars in the...

Pickers fill the fields as grape harvest begin

[03 March/Otago Daily Times] The first day of Autumn marked the first day of grape harvesting in Central Otago. Vineyard staff have been put to work on Quartz Reef’s 30ha of fields in Bendigo. Rudi Bauer, Quartz Reef Winemaker said that this is a typical time of year to start harvesting and that the main...

Warm weather means an ‘incredible’ early grape harvest in Marlborough

[18 February /Stuff] Malborough’s hot weather has ripened grapes early and vintage workers have been called up so that harvest can start this week. This means that the harvest is starting up to ten days before the long term average. Pernod Ricard group winemaker Jamie Marfell reported they usually started harvest during the first week...

Challenge ahead for smaller wineries

[11 February/The Country] Rabobank’s latest Global Wine Quarterly Report has raised a warning for New Zealand’s smaller, domestic market wineries which may be finding it more difficult gaining access to distribution channels. Rabobank’s Senior Wine and Horticulture Analyst, Hayden Higgins, said the large 2018 global harvest was starting to create a fundamental shift in the...

Export markets crucial for winemakers as Kiwis drink less

[22 January/Stuff] Westpac’s Winemakers Industry Insights Report suggests winemakers are facing tougher times as Kiwis are drinking less wine. The industry has consistently increased the volumes of grapes grown which has enabled the volume of wine produced to increase five fold over volumes at the turn of the century. Paul Clark, Westpac Industry Economist, said...

Wineries warned to check who’s doing work after second exploitation case

[10 January/NZ Herald] New Zealand winery managers have been warned by the Labour Inspectorate to ensure they understand who a contractor is employing to undertake tasks on their vineyards after a second worker exploitation case in the space of two months. Marlborough vineyard contracting company, Double Seven Services, and its managers have been fined more...

Marlborough winery contaminates neighbours’ drinking water with grape waste

[16 December/Stuff] Babich Wines has avoided convictions for contamination charges after demonstrating “extraordinary remorse” in a landmark pollution case. Runoff from the company’s new grape marc pad, leaked into the ground contaminating neighbours’ wells in 2016. The pad was not tested before it was used, and the leachate seeped into three shallow groundwater bores, which...

Future of wine in Gisborne assured

[7 December/NZ Herald] The future of wine-making in the Gisborne district remains secure despite declines in grape production in recent years. Gisborne winemaker, James Milton, believes the regions unique soils, while not cluttered with stones, actually enhance the fruitfulness of the grapevines. Mr Milton was reacting to comments made by wine writer, Michael Cooper, commenting...

‘Unprecedented offending’: Peter Yealands and his former company fined $400k

[11 December/The Country] Yealands Estate Wines has pleaded guilty to ‘unprecedented offending’ under the Wine Act 2003 and has been fined $400,000 for deliberate, deceptive and sustained breaches according to MPI.  The charges relate to parties being complicit in making false statements regarding export eligibility applications and material omissions in wine records relating to the...

Otago’s Providore Wines rolls out AR app to give buyers information

[10 December/NZ Herald] Otago wine producer Providore has launched an app using augmented reality (AR) to tell its origin story. The app has been rolled out as a bid to encourage people to buy its wines.  Launching in October, the wine company, has vineyards in the Gibbston Valley, and want to provide consumers with information...

Kiwis ‘too good’ for seasonal work as employers cry out for skilled fulltime staff

[4 December/Stuff] A recent employment survey in the Marlborough region shows the province is desperately short of skilled full-time staff.  Wine Marlborough advocacy manager, Vance Kerslake, said many Kiwis consider themselves too good for seasonal work and are only interested in taking permanent positions. Wine Marlborough surveyed 55 Marlborough employers across a dozen industries and...

Marlborough vineyard workers paid less than half of minimum wage

[22 November/Stuff] A Marlborough businessman has been ordered to pay more than $20,000 in penalties and unpaid wages to vineyard workers who have been paid less than half of the minimum wage. Jaswinder Paul hired seven employees through his company R.K.K Enterprises, who were subcontracted to work at Stokesay Vineyard. Employment Relations Authority member Christine...

Central Otago wine claims top national award

[6 November/The Country] Family owned Maude Wines has won the top prize in the first edition of the New Zealand Wine of the Year Awards. The Maude Pinot Noir Central Otago 2017 won the New Zealand Wine of the Year Champion trophy as well the Fruitfed Supplies Champion Pinot Noir trophy and the regional trophy...

Wine industry salutes tech company’s efforts

[6 November/Otago Daily Times] A Mosgiel based company, TracMap, has won a prestigious award at the annual Australian Wine Industry Impact Awards. The company provides grape growers with GPS guidance and mapping systems to manage activities on vineyards. The award was an indication that the technology can make a difference according to CEO, David Glen....

Vinoptima receivership set to lead to scale of 100,000 litres of premium Gewurztraminer

[17 October/NZ Herald] A wine lake of 100,000 litres of Gewurztraminer was waiting to be sold at a Poverty Bay vineyard. The vineyard has been placed into receivership. Vinoptima Founder, Nick Nobilo, said 100,000 litres of the wine had been accumulated from the vines. It was now under the control of BDO receiver Andrew McKay,...

Hawke’s Bay chardonnay wins champion white wine in New World Wine Awards

[8 October/The Country] Chardonnay was coming back into the spotlight, and won at the New World Wine Awards. Chairman of Judges, Jim Harre, said while a record number of rose wines entered the awards, it was the chardonnay that pleased the judges. He noted it was a nice win from a judging point of view....

Plant professor brings the science to wine research centre

[18 September/Stuff] The New Zealand Winegrowers Research Centre announced Lincoln University Professor, Brian Jordan, would act as its head of science to assist with its establishment. He would retain his job at the university, and work part time to build the science programme. The Centre’s Chief Executive, MJ Loza, said they were delighted to have...

Wine founder given top Australian honour

[12 September/NZ Winegrower] Wine industry founder, Dave Hohnen, received Australia’s top honour. He founded Cape Mentelle, and also led the creation of Cloudy Bay. He was made a member of the Order of Australia for his services to the Australian wine industry as a promoter of the Margaret River region. There was no mention of...

Frosty mornings give Hawke’s Bay winegrowers a few sleepless nights

[12 September/The Country] A cold snap gave Hawke’s Bay grape growers sleepless nights, however caused no real damage to crops. Hawke’s Bay Wine Growers Association Chairman, Michael Henley, said they were very early frosts so bud burst had not really happened. He added that Late October and early November would be the worst time to...

New Zealand financial services company Booster buys Sileni’s Hawke’s Bay business

[11 September/The Country] Sileni Estates has secured a purchaser for its business to ensure the continued operation and supply of its wine. Their new partner is Booster. It would now operate as Sileni Wines Limited Partnership to recognise the capital introduction and change of ownership. Sileni Estates Chief Executive, Nigel Avery, confirmed his family would...

Wine exports grow by more than $700 million in less than a decade

[29 August/Radio NZ] According to Marlborough, growth in New Zealand wine exports was driven by growth in demand from the U.S. The value of exports had grown by more than $700 million in less than a decade and volume had doubled since 2009. However, domestic sales of New Zealand wine had fallen. Marlborough’s vineyard accounted...

Unintended results of investment curbs

[23 July/Rural Life] Proposals to curb foreign investment in New Zealand could have unintended consequences for the horticulture and viticulture sectors. It could result in foreign owners instead opting to buy more land and vineyards outright, defeating the efforts to keep more assets in New Zealand hands. Industry expert, Alistair King, said the proposed Government...

‘Bumper’ wine harvest could affect prices

[23 July/The Country] A bumper 2018 wine harvest wold support export volumes and value, but could put downward pressure on prices. According to ASB Senior Rural Economist, Nathan Penny, another potential issue is the trade tensions between the UK, Europe, U.S. and China where the demand for New Zealand’s luxury status wine could fall. He...