WINE INDUSTRY

Mr PASIN (Barker) (13:54): There is a crisis facing Riverland wine grape growers. The loss of the Chinese market has resulted in a severe red wine oversupply.

 

Those opposites have done nothing to help the industry, as I outlined last week.

 

Of the Riverland’s almost 1,000 growers, around 600 supply 200,000 tons of grapes a year to Accolade Wines via a grower cooperative CCW.

 

Most growers finished picking their 2023 harvest in May—it’s now mid-June, and Accolade it is yet to finalise a price for cab sav and shiraz wine grapes. With an average cost of production of around $300 to $400 a tonne, you can imagine the stress caused by this delay.

 

I met with Accolade last year and impressed upon them the need to provide timely clarity around price.

 

More recently, invitations extended by my office to facilitate meetings with Accolade have been refused, and the cooperative’s attempts to negotiate with Accolade in recent months have also been unsuccessful.

 

Riverland growers are a vital part of the Australian wine industry, and it goes without saying that these small businesses are integral to the local economy of the Riverland.

 

It’s about time that Accolade, as one of the largest wine companies in the world, honours the contracts with growers and accepts and abides by the independent experts’ determination.

 

Media Contact: Charlotte Edmunds 8724 7730

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