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NEW ZEALAND WINEGROWER

AUGUST / SEPTEMBER 2018 ISSUE 111

T H E O F F I C I A L M A G A Z I N E O F T H E N E W Z E A L A N D W I N E I N D U S T RY

NZW Grape days The issues raised at this years’ events

Protecting Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc A new initiative sees an appellation system established

Bayer Young Vit Six viticulturists are preparing for the upcoming finals

AUGUST / SEPTEMBER ISSUE 111

Celebrating Success New Zealand Wine of the Year™ will celebrate more than wine


Issue 111 – August/September 2018

Contents

REGULARS 6

Editorial

Tessa Nicholson

8

From the CEO

Philip Gregan

10

In Brief

News from around the country

14

Calendar

Wine events in New Zealand

56

Women in Wine

Helen Morrison

120 Bob’s Blog

Bob Campbell MW

124 Not on the Label

Legal Matters with Kensington Swan

132 Research Supplement

The latest science and research projects funded by NZ Winegrowers

FEATURES

114

12

Celebrating success

Changes are afoot in the way the New Zealand wine industry celebrates its people, wines and regions.

94

16

Labour woes raise their head – again

As the sea of grapes marches across the Marlborough landscape, there are real concerns about the lack of labour to undertake pruning.

20

From vintage to viruses

It was the highest turnout ever for this year’s NZW Grape Days. We take a closer look at some of the issues raised.

74 36 56


E D I TO R Tessa Nicholson tessa.nicholson@me.com

CO R R E SP O N D E NTS Auckland: Joelle Thomson mailme@joellethomson.com Hawkes Bay: Olly Styles oliverstyles@hotmail.com Nelson: Neil Hodgson neil@hodgson.net.nz

Looking back to move forward

Central Otago: Jean Grierson jean.grierson@nzsouth.co.nz

A DV E R T I S I N G Sales Manager & Upper North Island: Stephen Pollard stephenp@ruralnews.co.nz Ph: 09 913 9637 Mobile: 021 963 166 Central North Island: Ted Darley ted@ruralnews.co.nz Ph: 07 854 6292 Mobile: 021 832 505 Lower North Island: Ron Mackay Ph: 04 234 6239 Mobile: 021 453 914 South Island: Kaye Sutherland kayes@ruralnews.co.nz Ph: 03 376 5552 Mobile: 021 221 1994

C I R C U L AT I O N & SUBSCRIPTIONS Jodi Blair jodi.blair@nzwine.com Ph: 09 303 3527, ext 0 Fax: 09 302 2969 Mobile: 0277 00 2371 New Zealand Winegrowers PO Box 90 276, Auckland Mail Centre, New Zealand

IT IS seven years since I took over the reins of NZ Winegrower. During that time the industry has changed dramatically. In 2011, we were still facing the fall-out from the global financial crisis. The perfect storm we referred to it back then, when relating it to the New Zealand wine industry. A couple of years of large yields, a situation where supply was in excess of demand, and our consumers throughout the world were facing financial stress of their own. Exports in 2011 stood at $1.09 billion. There were 33,600 producing hectares, with Marlborough making up just over 19,000 of those. Vintage that year provided 328,000 tonnes. But we weathered that storm and if you look at us now, the New Zealand wine industry is in good shape. Exports stand at $1.71 billion. Producing vineyard in New Zealand is over 37,000 ha (on NZW figures from 2017) with Marlborough having close to 27,000 of those, (according to the latest from Wine Marlborough). Vintage this year saw 419,000 tonnes. Supply this year will probably fall below demand, which is not always a bad thing. But it is timely to remember that we are always just one vintage away from something impacting. Anyone who lived through the 2008 – 2012 years will know what I mean. Which is why this year’s Bragato Conference is so important. Think Smart, Look Ahead is this year’s theme. From how to future proof your vineyard through to the potential implications of climate change, there is something there for everyone. The conference being held in Wellington is about sharing knowledge, preparing for the future and celebrating the industry as a whole. I look forward to seeing you there. By the way, I hope you like the new look of NZ Winegrower as much as we do.

PUBLISHING & P R E - P R E SS Rural News Group PO Box 331100, Takapuna, Auckland 0740 Ph: 09 307 0399 Location: Top Floor, 29 Northcroft Street, Takapuna, Auckland 0622 Publisher: Brian Hight Managing Editor: Adam Fricker Production: Dave Ferguson, Rebecca Williams

Published by Rural News Group Ltd under authority of New Zealand Winegrowers Inc. Unless directly attributed, opinions expressed in the magazine are not necessarily those of Rural News Group and/or its directors or management, New Zealand Winegrowers Inc. or its constituent organisations. Published every second month. One free copy is mailed to every member of the New Zealand Winegrowers Inc, the New Zealand Society of Viticulture & Oenology and the New Zealand Vine Improvement Group, and to such other persons or organisations as directed by the owners, with provision for additional copies and other recipients to be on a subscription basis.

ISSN 1174-5223

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Tessa Nicholson

EDITOR

CONTRIBUTORS

Lee Suckling

Lee has been published in over 60 lifestyle magazines throughout the world. With a Master of Journalism he contributes on consumer trend insights and commentary.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

Joelle Thomson

Journalist, wine writer, author and educator, Joelle is well known throughout New Zealand wine circles. She has a love of wine that translates into her writing.

Oliver Styles

An Englishman who has transferred his loyalties to New Zealand, Oliver (known as Olly) is not only a writer for international magazines, he is also a winemaker based in Hawke’s Bay.

Jean Grierson

Jean has spent the last 20years raising family, selling Otago wines online and establishing a successful Central Otago Pinot Noir vineyard and wine brand which was sold last year.


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From the CEO Philip Gregan

Caught in the crossfire Many New Zealand grape growers and winemakers are watching the rising global trade tensions with increasing concern because there is the possibility our wine exporters may be caught in the crossfire … and that would not be good at all for our sector. DRIVING THE increased tension is the new, aggressive ‘America first’ trade policy from President Trump combined with steadily increasing uncertainty over Brexit. As an industry the situation we face is simple: We are a small industry in a small country. As such we have little if any power to influence the big global trade picture. If New Zealand as a country has any power it is as a leading good citizen in the rules-based trading system that has developed since WW2 and which frames New Zealand’s trading relationships. It is that system which now seems under threat. As an industry we are overwhelmingly export dependent - over 80% of our total sales are to export markets, most notably to the EU and the USA which import over $1 billion of our wine per year. It is unlikely that New Zealand will be targeted in any trade war (because we are not important) but it is for that very same reason that we might get caught in the fray. From our perspective it is very concerning that two of the major players in the current skirmishes are the USA and the EU, and New Zealand does not have a Free Trade Agreement with either of them.

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

Philip Gregan

So there is real and rising risk here and there is little if anything we can do about it. What we can and are doing is: Lobby the government to ensure it is aware of our concerns and that it engages to the fullest extent possible in the international trade dialogue. Continue to be involved with the domestic trade policy-setting agenda both on our own and in concert with likeminded parties eg the International Business Forum of which we are a member. Actively support government efforts to

deepen international commitment to the rules-based trading system (CPTPP, EU and UK FTAs, Pacific Alliance, RCEP) Continue to work with our intentional colleagues, both bilaterally and through fora such as FIVS, WWTG, OIV etc to continue to promote adherence to a rules based trading system. As to what is actually going to happen in coming months that is anybody’s guess. … so carefully watch the trade space with much interest and some trepidation as well.


News Briefs

 DOMESTIC 

 NZW NEWS 

New chair and deputy THE NEW leadership of the New Zealand Winegrowers Board has been announced. John Clarke from Gisborne is the new chair taking over from Steve Green and the new deputy is Clive Jones from Marlborough. Jones has been a winemaker at Nautilus Estate since 1991, and is a former chair of the board of Wine Marlborough.

BEST IN SHOW AT DECANTER WINE AWARDS CONGRATULATIONS TO the three New Zealand wine companies who were awarded Platinum – Best in Show at the recent Decanter Wine Awards. Ceres Wines Composition Pinot Noir 2015, Elephant Hill Reserve Chardonnay 2015 and Vavasour Sauvignon Blanc 2017 all earned 97 points, to take out the Best in Show title in each of their categories.  M ARLBOROUGH 

New winery MARLBOROUGH’S LATEST winery opened just in time for the 2018 vintage, in fact it was up and running on the very day vintage began. The Wine Studio, which will be Two Rivers’ winemaking hub, will also operate as a contract winemaking facility for a few specialised clients. Owned by Dave and Pip Clouston, the facility was able to process up to 500 tonnes of fruit this year, but future plans are to extend that to close to 1500 tonnes in 2019. “Having our own winery has enabled us to be more attuned to the wine, practice intuitive winemaking and be more reactive, particularly in a challenging season like the 2018 harvest,” Dave Clouston says.

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

The Two Rivers team, celebrate their new winery. From left, Dave Clouston (owner/winemaker), Sanna Stander (production winemaker) and Jason Yank (commercial director).


News Briefs

 WELLINGTON WINE 

 M ARLBOROUGH 

SAUVIGNON WORKSHOP PRIOR TO Sauvignon Blanc 2019, the NZSVO is running a workshop in Blenheim on the intricacies of New Zealand’s number one varietal. The workshop will take place the day before Sauvignon 19 opens, on Sunday January 27, at the Clubs of Marlborough. Registrations are due to open shortly.

Escarpment’s first hipster wines ONE OF Martinborough’s first winemakers has made another first this year with the launch of a no sulphur wine called Noir. Larry McKenna describes Noir as his first foray into the hipster world of organic, minimal intervention winemaking and it’s made from organically grown grapes on Te Muna Road. The Abel clone of Pinot Noir was fermented with wild yeasts in clay amphora and left on skins for 270 days prior to pressing. No sulphur dioxide was added and was neither fined nor filtered so it is the purist expression of Pinot Noir that McKenna says he has made yet under the Escarpment label. It’s part of a new range of wines he’s calling Artisan. “Escarpment’s Artisan range is a commitment to the future expansion of our key varieties, exploring boundaries has always been part of our philosophy and is exhibited in our winemaking approach.” There are five wines in the range and they will be organically certified going forward.

 CENTRAL OTAGO 

 DOMESTIC 

Invivo Wines Take Top Kiwi Crowdfunding Spot JUST TWO-weeks after opening investment opportunities to the public, Invivo Wines became New Zealand’s largest equity crowdfunded company. The innovative company was the first winery in the Southern Hemisphere to launch an equity crowdfunding exercise in 2015 and with their latest capital raise, Invivo has now received more than $4 million from over 687 investors through a combination of equity crowdfunding and wholesale investments. Owner Tim Lightbourne says Invivo’s equity crowdfunding consists of a similar mix of everyday consumers who love the brand and would like to become part of the Invivo story, and wholesale investors who have made significant investments.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   9


Upcoming Events

August November Tonnellerie de Mercurey Young Winemaker of the Year

YOUNG WINEMAKER OF THE YEAR

20 August – Auckland Villa Maria Vineyard and Harbourside Restaurant The regional finals have been held, now the top four compete against each other to find the 2019 Young Winemaker of the Year. Wine-marlborough.com/tonnellerie-de-mercurey-youngwinemaker

Bayer Young Viticulturist of the Year 27 August – Martinborough Palliser Estate Growing the future of the New Zealand wine industry. Six finalists from throughout New Zealand compete for the coveted title. nzwine.com/youngvit

TO HAVE EVENTS ADDED TO OUR CALENDAR CONTACT TESSA NICHOLSON TESSA.NICHOLSON@ME.COM

NZSVO Sparkling Workshop 28 August – Blenheim Vintners Retreat Joining the Dots – Sparkling wine viticulture, base wine processing, Methode Traditionelle and production technology. nzsvo.org.nz

Romeo Bragato Conference 29-30 August – Wellington Westpac Stadium. Conference dinner on Thursday at Shed 6. The largest and one of the most important wine industry conferences for grape growers and winemakers on the New Zealand calendar. bragato.org.nz

Marlborough Wine Show Entries open from August 27 to September 21 The regional wine show for the country’s largest wine region is coming up. Judging will take place from October 15 – 17, with the Celebration of the Marlborough wine industry on October 26. wine-marlborough.co.nz

New Zealand Wine of the Year ™ Entries open from August 1 – 31 Judging October 1 – 4, Auckland November 3 New Zealand Wine of the Year™ Awards Dinner – Wellington Previously known as the Air New Zealand Wine Awards and the Bragato Wine Awards, New Zealand Wine of the Year™ is now the official wine competition of the New Zealand wine industry. nzwine.org.nz

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018


Global Events Global Events

New Zealand Wine Global Events Programme 2018-2019 The New Zealand Winegrowers Global Events Programme outlines the user-pays global events activities planned for 2018-2019.

EUROPE

USA

17 SEPTEMBER

7-8 SEPTEMBER

Taste of New Zealand Hamburg

DEADLINE 3 AUGUST

24 SEPTEMBER

27 SEPTEMBER

Taste of New Zealand Warsaw

DEADLINE 10 AUGUST

UK

1 OCTOBER

12-13 OCTOBER The drinks business Wine and Spirits Show London DEADLINE 31 AUGUST

29-30 OCTOBER New Release and Sommelier Preview London DEADLINE 31 AUGUST

10 NOVEMBER Three Wine Men Cambridge DEADLINE 31 AUGUST

1 DECEMBER The Wine Gang London DEADLINE 31 AUGUST

New Zealand Wine Fair San Francisco

AUSTRALIA

SEPTEMBER

DEADLINE TBC

OCTOBER

26 SEPTEMBER

David Jones New Zealand Month Melbourne & Sydney

Winter Wine School Toronto

DEADLINE 10 AUGUST

DEADLINE 17 AUGUST

New Zealand Wine Experience New York

REGISTRATION CLOSED

Angela Willis Global Events Manager +64 9 306 5642 angela@nzwine.com

U-Feast Toronto

Winesong Northern California

REGISTRATION CLOSED

To view a digital version of this programme, please visit www.nzwine.com/members/events. Alternatively, if you would like a hard copy version, or wish to speak to one of the team, please contact:

13 OCTOBER

OCTOBER POTW Speciality Boutique Launch Event Toronto DEADLINE TBC

DEADLINE 10 AUGUST

12-13 OCTOBER

4 OCTOBER

Rocky Mountain Wine Festival Calgary

New Zealand Wine Fair Houston

DEADLINE 3 AUGUST

DEADLINE 10 AUGUST

1-3 NOVEMBER

21-23 OCTOBER

La Grand Degustation Competition Montreal

StarChefs Somm Slam & Congress New York DEADLINE 24 AUGUST

CANADA 23 AUGUST Summer Wine Jam Toronto

Pinot Palooza Brisbane DEADLINE 10 AUGUST

ASIA 13-15 NOVEMBER ProWine China Shanghai DEADLINE 31 AUGUST

24 NOVEMBER Pinot Palooza 2018 Singapore

DEADLINE 31 AUGUST

DEADLINE 12 OCTOBER

2-11 NOVEMBER

27 NOVEMBER

Royal Agriculture Winter Fair Toronto

Pure Discovery Seoul

DEADLINE 17 AUGUST

DEADLINE 12 OCTOBER

29 NOVEMBER

29 NOVEMBER

Holiday Wine Jam Toronto

Pure Discovery Taipei

DEADLINE 3 AUGUST

DEADLINE 28 SEPTEMBER

DEADLINE 12 OCTOBER

23 AUGUST

27 FEBRUARY - 3 MARCH ‘19

1 DECEMBER

U-Feast Vancouver DEADLINE 10 AUGUST

Vancouver International Wine Festival

Pinot Palooza 2018 Hong Kong

DEADLINE 31 AUGUST

DEADLINE 12 OCTOBER

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Celebrating success TESSA NICHOLSON

The New Zealand wine industry will be celebrating success in a revamped way from this year

Winners are grinners – the Isabel Estate Vineyard team of Marlborough. The company’s 2016 Marlborough Chardonnay was the ANZWA Champion Wine of the Show last year.

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018


NZW News

THE NEW Zealand wine industry will be celebrating success in a revamped way from this year on, after suggestions from PwC who have conducted a strategic review. Part one of a two-part review, PwC took a closer look at the two major celebrational events of the calendar year – the Bragato Wine Awards and the Air New Zealand Wine Awards. With Air New Zealand withdrawing as naming rights sponsor from 2018, the review is timely. Tasked with determining if the status quo was the best method of celebrating success, the review surveyed NZW members, alongside award chairs and members of the board. The results showed that both events were considered important by members, particularly as platforms for the industry to get together. However there appeared to be a feeling that members wanted to celebrate more than just

quality of wine and viticultural excellence. They also wanted to share the success of people, innovation, sustainability, partnerships, experience and export success. When it came to the current two awards, Bragato and ANZWA, more than twice the number of members (45 percent) claimed they were satisfied or very satisfied. But the report states that there was a very large group – 44 percent – that sat right in the middle, neither satisfied or unsatisfied, “potentially indicating a degree of irrelevance for many”. Delving deeper, the survey of members showed there was a strong appetite for keeping the awards but revamping them. As CEO Philip Gregan says the awards need to be about more than just wine. “It needs to be about our people and our regions.” So from this year there will no longer be a separate Bragato Wine Awards. Instead the PwC

Chair of new New Zealand Wine of the Year™ Awards, Warren Gibson. Deputy chair is Ben Glover.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   13


Delving deeper, the survey of members showed there was a strong appetite for keeping the awards but revamping them.

report suggests Bragato should be focused on sharing knowledge and success such as the young viticulturists. The end of year wine awards could then focus on a range of successes, which would include wine. As a result there will be a major transformation of the industry’s official wine competition. Firstly, without a principal naming sponsor, the awards will be known as the New Zealand Wine of the Year™ Awards. The best in variety will be a major part of the new look awards but a new inclusion from this year will be the category of best regional wines. All the wines of each region will be judged alongside their compatriots, to find the best say

Meet the team behind the Boneline Cabernet Franc 2016, which took out Bragato Champion Wine of the Show last year.

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

Nelson wine, or Waipara wine or Gisborne wine. Only seven trophies will be awarded on the night, with the New Zealand Wine of the Year™ Champion the ultimate prize. For the first time a trophy will be presented to the best organic wine of the year, along with a trophy for the best single vineyard wine of the year. In addition to the New Zealand Wine of the Year™, the wider industry will be celebrated during the evening as part of the overarching New Zealand Wine Awards. This will include the induction of the 2018 New Zealand Winegrowers Fellows, Young Viticulturist of the Year, Young Winemaker of the Year and Student of the Year.

“We have big plans for the future of the wine awards, broadening the base and broadening the areas of excellence in the industry,” Gregan says. Chair for the New Zealand Wine of the Year™ Awards will be Hawke’s Bay winemaker and last year’s chair of the ANZWA’s, Warren Gibson. Former Bragato Wine Awards chair Ben Glover from Marlborough will be deputy chair.

New Zealand Wine of the Year™ Awards 2018 Entries open August 1 Entries close August 31 Judging October 2-5

New Zealand Wine Awards dinner November 3, Wellington nzwine.com/events


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Regions Marlborough

Labour woes raise their head – again TESSA NICHOLSON

Back in 2016 a Labour Market Survey was undertaken in Marlborough to determine just where the region’s wine industry was going in terms of growth. The result – another 7000 hectares, by 2020. THER E WER E some who scoffed at that figure – where on earth were 7000 hectares of land available in Marlborough for that level of growth? Well for those who didn’t believe the figures, think again. Wine Marlborough’s General

Manager Marcus Pickens says the predicted growth is already above target, with as many as 4400 hectares having been planted since the survey in 2016. And with that growth has come the predicted problems that were also outlined – namely the requirement for more labour. At the time of the survey the annual vineyard workforce in Marlborough stood at 8,325, with 2500 of those coming from RSE. To cope with increased production by 2020 the workforce would need to grow to 10,304 and RSE numbers would need to grow by 900. While the growth in vineyard plantings has grown quicker than anticipated, the workforce numbers

With approximately 60 million vines in Marlborough, concerns are rising that there isn’t the workforce available to prune them. PHOTO: LORENZO VISSER – BLENHEIM

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

have not and now there are very real concerns that vines will not be pruned this season because of that. “Pruning has started earlier than ever before,” Pickens says, “and it is likely it will continue far later than ever before. That raises the issue of immense potential damage to vineyards.” Despite caps being lifted on RSE numbers throughout New Zealand, Pickens says Marlborough has not seen a massive increase. “The cap last year across the entire horticultural and viticulture sectors for RSE was 10,500 (workers) per annum. The new government increased that by 600 to 11,100. Of that 600 extra workers, Marlborough only

received 80 despite requesting 250. “We thought we demonstrated everything required to show that Marlborough needed a big increase in RSE workers, yet we got the smallest allocation of all the three main RSE regions.” Pickens who is also the Chair of the Marlborough Labour Governance Group says the RSE unit has decided to undertake an operational review, they want to hear about the challenges employers and users of RSE face in the application and allocation process and they will try and resolve those in the future. The government has also signed off a policy review of RSE, the first undertaken since the scheme


Early pruning opens vines up to diseases such as Eutypa.

was introduced nearly 11 years ago. “That is encouraging,” Pickens says. “I think it is very positive the unit is listening and trying to make the system better for all involved”. But it doesn’t solve the problems the industry is facing currently. Time constraints and a lack of skilled workers could lead to a number of negative scenarios, Pickens believes. One being “cowboy” practices, where some contractors cut corners both in the field and with workers, increased likelihood of injuries due to workers having to work harder and faster, and the risk of vines being pruned inadequately, or not at all. The issue of not having enough skilled workers to complete the winter pruning is not a new one in Marlborough. It has been an on-going concern in the region since the late 90’s. And with one of the lowest unemployment stats in the country, there is little chance that the increased need for workers can be found within the region. “We need RSE, we cannot survive without it. We are where we are today because of RSE and we’ve employed more Kiwi’s because of it too. There is no way Marlborough’s vineyard area would have grown to this level without it. But we now need even more workers to cope with the ongoing growth.”

The perils of early and late pruning IN A perfect world, pruning in Marlborough would begin in July and be all wrapped up by the end of August, according to viticultural consultant Dominic Pecchenino. But that’s a perfect world, and currently Marlborough is anything but. “You can never do that,” he says. “ “We are forced to extend our pruning season on both sides of the bell curb. We have to start early and finish late because of a lack of workers.” And that has consequences. The perils of pruning early are twofold. One, you open your vines up to disease via pruning wounds, because they don’t heal as fast as they do late in the season. “The earlier you prune the longer your vine is susceptible to getting the likes of Eutypa and Botryosphaeria. That is a real issue.” Number two; if you prune too early you run the risk of weakening your vine for the following season. “You are not allowing your plant to collect all the nutrients that are still in the leaf

that would naturally fall back into the plant as it goes into natural dormancy.” Pecchenino says ideally it is best to wait until the frosts begin to kill off the leaves and any immature wood – but a lack of workforce means many people can’t wait for those climatic events to occur before they begin pruning. In terms of late pruning, Pecchenino says there is a real risk of damaging swelling buds. “In some situations, late pruning may not be a bad idea if you are in a real frost prone area – it can help delay your bud burst a little bit. But you also run the risk if you are wrapping canes and stripping out, of damaging buds, which will reduce your fruitfulness. You may have had 12 or 14 buds but wrapping late may have damaged five or six of those.” Pecchenino agrees that Marlborough growers are having to prune earlier and last year he said there were still vines being wrapped at the end of September. “And that’s getting very late.”

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   17


Regions Central Otago

Labour key restraint for growth JEAN GRIERSON

CENTRAL OTAGO’S winegrowers are being asked to think now about their future labour needs. An upsurge in horticultural plantings has raised flags about impending shortages in availability of seasonal workers and beds to accommodate them, especially at harvest time. The Central Otago District Council has partnered with sector groups to get up-to-date information on crop plantings and associated labour demands, and all grape growers and contractors, and orchardists, are being asked to have their say by filling in and returning the survey forms they have been sent. A similar survey three years ago had proved to be “remarkably accurate,” said Martin Anderson of Cromwell, who,

with Tara Druce of Druce Consulting, has updated the questionnaire. The 2015 report highlighted labour supply as an “ongoing and growing fragility in the sector” and there is every indication the situation is worsening, says Anderson. As in other regions there is an interdependence between the horticulture and viticulture industries, and whilst grape plantings may be tracking along pretty much as expected (“modest” growth) - it’s a different story with horticulture which is on a roll, with no end to its expansion in sight. The total estimated hectares for all fruit types is approaching the total area in grapes, around 2000 ha, boosted by cherry developments and a resurgence

in apple plantings. Orchardists and grape growers access the same labour pool to help out with seasonal peak times, with spikes in a “normal” year in January when cherries and stone fruit are harvested, and in the April grape and apple harvest. Seasonal Solutions is by far the biggest RSE scheme employer in Otago, placing around 600 of the 800 quota for the region in orchard and vineyard jobs. CEO Helen Axby said demand for RSE workers would always exceed supply, and their numbers are strictly controlled by central government quotas. C e nt r a l O t ago m i g ht account for only about 5.1 percent of the national wine production,(according to

More than 80 percent of grapes are hand-picked in Central Otago – that requires a large workforce.

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

NZW’s annual report 2017) but it relies heavily on the transient backpacker population to get the harvest in. Only about 17% of grapes are machine harvested in Otago, and some 1900 seasonal workers are needed mostly for hand picking the grapes. Where those seasonal workers stay is a serious question that grape growers now need to address. Whilst RSE workers reside at approved lodgings that go with their jobs, and orchardists have been catering for their seasonal workers on-site for a much longer time, the viticulture industry has “perhaps been slow on the uptake of providing pastoral care for their workers,” says Anderson The 2015 survey had shown some “very sad examples of vineyard owners who didn’t care where their workers were living – they were turning up at work and they hadn’t eaten or slept. On the other hand, there were some very good examples of pastoral care, with many owners who made sure they (the workers) had a warm meal and somewhere to live etc,” said Anderson. Previously locals may have turned a blind eye to campers drying their washing by Lake Dunstan or other reserves, but now there is growing resentment to freedom camping and the public is expecting grape growers to take more ownership of the issue. Camping grounds have closed down to make way for more housing. Anderson expects changes in council bylaws in the near future will


there are less people to fill the gaps here.” “Anyone who wants to expand and grow will need to take their supply of labour into account in all dimensions – RSE, accommodation, rates of pay,” she says. Central Otago deputy mayor Neil Gillespie says a 7.1 hectare development in Cromwell’s industrial area could offer some worker housing options. Initially mooted as offering 400 worker beds, based on shared bedrooms and facilities, the final plans have gone a bit more upmarket providing for some 74 bedrooms with ensuites, reflecting a “more flexible amenity for workers in the district.” Whilst it may offer options for workers struggling to find digs – and winegrowers have been finding it hard to place their permanent staff – the question of the shortage of at least 600 “backpacker” beds required by 2018/19, as iden-

As in Marlborough demand for RSE workers such as these employed by Seasonal Solutions, will always exceed supply.

tified in the 2015 survey, still needs to be addressed, urgently. Axby fears backpackers may be discouraged from heading south for the grape harvest by hearing the bad wrap about freedom camping on social media. “The region is dependent on them (backpackers),” says

Anderson. “We need to be welcoming to the backpackers and be celebrating them and looking after them well.” He hopes the survey will help stimulate more discussion, give some suggestions, directions and maybe even answers – by next vintage. jean.grierson@nzsouth.co.nz

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address freedom camping limits. “Labour is a key constraint for the industry,” says Central Otago District Council economic development manager Warwick Hawker. “Our council takes a much greater and more active involvement than most others in the country, where these discussions are growerdriven.” Meanwhile, Axby says the South Island has an acute labour shortage and it’s also problematic recruiting suitable people to more permanent horticulture and viticulture jobs. “It’s not just a Central Otago problem – it’s a national issue across every area of New Zealand where horticulture and viticulture are key industries. It just so happens that we have less people available to us in the South Island.” “The case we’re trying to make is the size and scale may be less (in Otago) than Marlborough or Hawkes Bay, but

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New Zealand Wine

Vintage Indicators - Region 2018

All Regions 2018

TOTAL

Volume of Grapes Harvested

419,000 tonnes*

 6%

CHANGE ON PREVIOUS VINTAGE

-6%

NORTHLAND

AUCKLAND

-16%

GISBORNE

-20% +22%

NELSON

HAWKE’S BAY

+7%

+20% WAIRARAPA +4% +36%

MARLBOROUGH

NORTH CANTERBURY

+30% CANTERBURY +36%

CENTRAL OTAGO

*Estimated production figures based on the 2018 Vintage Survey.

Tonnage Per Region

% OF TOTAL HARVEST

Waitaki Valley has no comparative data

77.4%

MARLBOROUGH 313,038

10.2%

HAWKE’S BAY 41,061

3.2%

GISBORNE 13,000

2.8%

CENTRAL OTAGO 11,358

2.6%

NORTH CANTERBURY 10,542

2.3%

NELSON 9,120

1.1%

WAIRARAPA 4,592

0.2%

AUCKLAND 787

0.2%

CANTERBURY 615 WAITAKI VALLEY 170 NORTHLAND 113 Statistics collated from 2018 Vintage Survey

20   // 

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018


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New Zealand Wine

Vintage Indicators - Variety 2018

TOTAL

Volume of Grapes Harvested

419,000 tonnes* 6% 

Key Varieties 2018 % TOTAL PRODUCTION AND TOTAL PRODUCED

1 2 3 4 5 6

*Estimated production figures based on the 2018 Vintage Survey.

% Change on Last Year

KEY VARIETIES

SAUVIGNON BLANC 73.3% 296,573 tonnes PINOT NOIR 8.7% 35,095 tonnes CHARDONNAY 6.5% 26,371 tonnes PINOT GRIS 5.6% 22,824 tonnes MERLOT 2.6% 10,623 tonnes RIESLING 0.9% 3,776 tonnes

MERLOT 38

PINOT NOIR 22

PINOT GRIS 10

SAUVIGNON BLANC 4

RIESLING 3

CHARDONNAY 2

Statistics collated from 2018 Vintage Survey

22   // 

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018


Agenda News

Founder given top Australian honour

David Hohnen (left) and winemaker Kevin Judd, tasting the Cloudy Bay wines, back in 1989.

THE MAN behind the establishment of one of New Zealand’s most renowned wineries, has received Australia’s top honour. David Hohnen who founded Cape Mentelle in the Margaret River region, was also the man behind Marlborough’s Cloudy Bay. In June he received Australia’s highest honour when he was made a member of the Order of Australia for his services to the Australian wine industry and as a promoter of the Margaret River region. There was no mention in his honour of just how much he did for the New Zealand wine industry, in particular Marlborough. But that’s okay, for once New Zealand can borrow an Australian icon and claim them for their own. Hohnen was honoured by the New Zealand wine industry back in 2006, when he was included in the New Zealand Winemakers Hall of Fame. In an email to former NZ Winegrower editor Terry Dunleavy, he said; “It’s an honour that ranks with my AM today. My involvement with Cloudy Bay gave me the profile and gravitas, for want of a better word, to get out there and do something for Margaret River.” So huge congrats David.

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   23


Grape Days

From vintage to viruses TESSA NICHOLSON

Now into its 10th year, the New Zealand Winegrower Grape Days have become a benchmark in information transfer. And members are obviously appreciative of it, given the record numbers that turned out in June to the three sessions. From the details of Vintage 18, that showed a slight increase in yields over last year, through to how viruses could become a grape grower’s best friend, the day was packed with information and research findings. Over the next few pages we take a look at some of the knowledge that was passed on to those attending. If you would like more detail, visit the nzwine.com members website. All the presentations are on line. 24   // 

REDUCING HERBICIDE USE IN VINEYARDS PRESENTED BY MARK KRASNOW

IT HAS long been a practice of growers to spray under vine weeds to prevent competition. It has entailed multiple sprays, leaving the ground bare for the summer months. But is this necessary? Does the growth under the vine really impact on the yields and chemical makeup of the fruit? Mark Krasnow has been exploring those very questions. With Glyphosate being classed as a category 2A carcinogenic by the World Health Organisation, there is an urgent need to come up with alternatives to its use.  “There is a movement in Europe to actually ban Roundup and if that happens they are going to start putting protectionist tariffs on countries and force them to make the same choice,” he says. Long-term alternatives are needed, ones that do not impact on yields or fruit quality. The current research programme that is investigating whether reducing sprays to just the one early one followed by non-chemical treatments such as cultivation or mowing, versus multiple sprays throughout the season began in the 2015/16 season.  Six vineyards in Hawke’s Bay and Marlborough were involved,

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

with vineyards split into control (conventional multiple sprays) and the other half reduced herbicide where just the one spray was applied early season. The first spray went on just around bud burst in both scenarios. Over the two years canopy gaps as an overall measure of vine vigour were compared between the two scenarios. There were differences but they were pretty small. Sugar accumulation was compared – the result showing; “the ripening of fruit was unimpeded by allowing stuff to grow under the vines later in the season.” There was a difference in nitrogen though in the reduced herbicide juice samples, understandably Krasnow says, as the growth under the vines is drawing on the same source of nitrogen as the vines are. “This resulted in a lowering of YAN in juice. However, this lower YAN can easily be dealt with by fertilisation in the vineyard as berries develop, or in the winery by adding DAP or another nitrogen source prior to fermentation.” “The take home message is that we can let stuff grow under our vines (after


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set) without impacting on the yield,” he says. “I think one of the things we need to do is re-train our eyes. A little bit of stuff growing under your vines is not the end of the world.” He says people tend to be hung up on how the vineyard looks, and that might be doing more harm than good. Think about how much water that under vine growth is taking away from the vine in a wet season. Think Marlborough 2017 and 2018, when heavy rain arrived just before harvest. The end result was split grapes and some severe disease threats. “In a season that is rainy, having some of that stuff there could allow it to intercept some of the water so your vine doesn’t get it all.” What the trials did show was that the early spray close to bud burst allowed the vine to grow and develop its canopy unhindered, setting it up for the rest

of the season and the following one. “We are eliminating the competition for a short time during canopy development, so we get our solar panel up and we get flowering for this year and our

bunches for next year. After that a little bit of competition doesn’t seem to be a bad thing. And could be a good thing especially if we start getting more and more rain around harvest.” It also reduces the potential

COULD A VIRUS HELP CONTROL BOTRYTIS? PRESENTED BY ROBIN MACDIARMID, PLANT & FOOD

RESEARCH HAS discovered a pathogen that attacks Botrytis and it could be the answer to future outbreaks of the disease, Robin MacDiarmid says. It is all based around the development of genome sequencing, which has allowed scientists to see for the first time viruses in their initial form. “A virus is smaller than the wave length of light,” MacDiarmid says, “so you are never going to see it. What you do see is the disease it causes. But now our genomes can be sequenced and viruses are just a little bit of genome sequence – just a little bit of software looking for compatible hardware.”

26   // 

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

By using the power of sequencing there is the ability to look at more than just the disease pathogens cause and focus on the pathogens themselves. MacDiarmid says what they are discovering is that not all viruses are bad. For example, after analysing Botrytis samples from a collection at Landcare, scientists have discovered a new virus, that

of chemical residues on fruit, which given the movement against Glyphosate, is a positive thing for the future. For more details on this research programme see page 144 in the Research Supple-


“It has some traits that are very desirable. It reduces the rate of the growth of Botrytis and we can infect new Botrytis with this virus by spraying.”

actually attacks the Botrytis fungus. “We found this virus multiple times, but only the one sequence. So it is possible that there are others.” Which leaves the scientists with a large number of questions, the number one being how can this new virus be of use? “It has some traits that are very desirable. It reduces the rate of the growth of Botrytis and we can infect new Botrytis with this virus by spraying. Now we have a slew of ques-

tions that we need to address. How stable is it? What stage of Botrytis is it working best on? Can it protect from infection? Can it treat infection? What is its host range?” But as MacDiamid says, it takes a very short time to ask a question. It takes a lot longer to address that question. In the meantime, they will continue to study the new virus and look for appropriate commercial partners to see if it can be produced in an economic way. “And to see if it is eco-

nomically viable in terms of that it performs how we think it is going to perform.” MacDiarmid says this virus is not produced through genetic engineering. “It is found naturally from samples that have been collected across New Zealand.” The research is ground breaking she says and hopefully will provide in the longterm the basis for chemistry free control of Botrytis. Which after the issues this recent vintage, can’t come soon enough.

LIGHTER WINE PROGRAMME UPDATE PRESENTED BY DR DAVID JORDAN

RESEARCH OF premium consumers has shown that 41 percent of our target market desire wines of lower alcohol. David Jordan says if you are in denial of

that you need to wake up. “We need to move our head from the bottom of the barrel and understand what our consumers desire.”

Sales domestically of lighter wines have grown steadily. In the total sales of Sauvignon Blanc, six percent are lower in alcohol. It is the same with Pinot

Gris. In Rosé, it is slightly higher at eight percent. Sales in the export market are just beginning to grow. After vintage a number of

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“We need to move our head from the bottom of the barrel and understand what our consumers desire.” large UK distributors were in Marlborough specifically asking to see wines that were lower in alcohol. There are similar stories of interest being expressed by both Australian and Canadian importers. “So we are seeing very positive signs in our key export markets. We believe it’s in the order of $200 million annual FOB value for our industry based on the opportunities and our assessment of them.” The important thing to remember is that this programme is not working towards producing wines of four or five percent. Instead the wines being produced are between 8.5 and

28   // 

10 percent alcohol, with the majority being at 9.5percent. “We often use the term single digit, which gives us a position in the wine stores that we wouldn’t otherwise have held.” Producing lower alcohol wines in a natural way is paramount to consumers Jordan says. Which is why the programme has focused on managing the vineyards and the juice, rather than use technology that strips alcohol from the wine. That is not the only reason why the Lighter Wine programme is important to the New Zealand industry. Many of the findings from the first five years of the seven-year pro-

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018


gramme are providing answers on how to deal with difficult vintages. “Sometimes we are picking the grapes earlier than what would be considered ideal,”

Jordan says. “Building tools to manage the grapes through to classy wines, with those challenges, the tools coming out of this programme are helping us to adapt.”

Climate change may lead to more rapid ripening in the future and the impact of that on our wine styles could be very real. Again, learnings from the Lighter Wine Programme could

help to manage that impact. If you would like more information on the Lighter Wines Programme, visit the nzwine. com members website. tessa.nicholson@me.com

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   29


News VineFacts

THE

2017/18 SEASON

Photo Tiki Wines, Marlborough. SUPPLIED BY NZW.

If there was one story that kept occurring after vintage 2018, it was the impact of weather on all regions. As vintage figures show, many regions had a major increase in yields this year, with Central Otago seeing a jump of 36 percent when compared with last year. In contrast Marlborough saw a modest increase of just 4 percent. VINEFACTS WHICH monitors weather and phenology of six regions throughout the growing season, (September – April) shows best how much weather played a part in the final vintage figures. Firstly temperature. Every one of the six regions saw an increase in temperatures over the 2017/18 season, when compared with the long-term average, (figure 1). Yes it was a hot season – as the graph above shows. Marlborough and Central Otago had their warmest summer in at least 28 years. Wairarapa had its warmest season in at least 15 years. For Gisborne, Hawke’s Bay and Waipara – it was their second hottest summer in 28 years. Those temperatures added to the increase in growing degree days, particularly early on in the season, (figure 2). The most notable feature of the total GDD graph is that from late November 2017 through until early-February 2018 Central Otago was tracking with almost the same total GDDs as Gisborne. In a typical season Central Otago normally records the least total GDDs throughout the season and the line is the lowest on the graph. However, in mid-February 2018 the weather pattern in Central Otago changed markedly with much cooler temperatures and the slope of the GDD line was much flatter from that point onwards. When it came to rainfall, Hawke’s Bay and Gisborne were below the long-term average, but elsewhere it was a different story. The effects of two cyclonic events in February impacted especially on Marlborough and Waipara, (figure 3). As the graphs show – 2017/18 was a season that won’t be forgotten in a hurry. Warm, wet and a number of climatic events that impacted on yields throughout. For more information on VineFacts and how you can receive the information this coming season, visit vinefacts@ nzwine.com

30   // 

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

Figure 1

Figure 2

Figure 3


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NZW Election

Ten things you need to know about upcoming NZW Election HOW IMPORTANT IS IT?

Very important! NZ Winegrowers is the body of and for the more than 1,400 winegrowers in New Zealand. So if you want NZW to be a top class performer on behalf of the industry then that will only happen if members get involved in the election process by ensuring they are eligible to vote, by standing for election or nominating someone for election and, finally by voting!

WHAT’S AT STAKE?

What’s at stake in the election is the representation of your business and your industry – an industry which now has sales valued in excess of $1.7 billion per annum, is New Zealand’s fifth largest export good, is New Zealand’s largest horticulture crop by area, and which attracts over 700,000 overseas tourists a year. NZW as the industry body is a key leader and supporter of the industry in terms of advocacy, research, sustainability, marketing and information provision with a total spend of around $20 m per year of which around half comes from levy payments by members.

WHY IS ONLY HALF THE BOARD UP FOR ELECTION? 32   // 

The rules of NZW Inc set out the election process for NZW and these were approved by the members when NZW was founded. These rules stipulate that, apart from the very first election in 2016, half the Board comes up for election every two years. The aim of this process is to ensure some stability on the Board through the election cycles.

WILL MY VOTE COUNT?

Well if you don’t vote you can guarantee it won’t count … In this election it is the five levy director positions that are being contested and as such the election is based on 1 vote for every $1 of levy payment. Our current estimate is that over 9 million votes will be eligible to be cast this time with about 2.5 m votes derived from the grape levy and over 6.5 m votes generated by wine levy payments. On this basis no individual member will control more than 5% of the votes eligible to be cast (as the maximum wine levy payment of $450,000 is less than 5% of the eligible levy payments of more than $9 m).

HOW MANY VOTES DOES IT TAKE TO WIN? Well that depends on the turnout. In the 2016 levy

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

Board Chair John Clarke

class election the highest polling candidate received just under 1.2 m votes and the lowest polling successful candidate received just under 850,000 votes. In that election there were 7.9 m eligible votes of which 6.1 m were actually cast. That means the top polling candidate received 19.3% of votes cast and the lowest polling successful candidate received 13.6% of votes

cast. Another way to look at those numbers is that the number of votes not cast exceeded the number received by the top polling candidate!

HOW MANY VOTES WILL I HAVE TO CAST? Very simply the number of votes you will have available is proportional to your levy payments to NZW. The detail … each member


is able to cast one vote per whole dollar of levy due to NZW in respect of sales of grapes and wine by the member during the year ended on 31 March 2018 and paid to NZW by 31 August 2018. You will be advised of the number of votes you will have to cast as part of the election process.

choose. In the 2016 election more than half the members who voted split their votes across two or more candidates. However, given there are only five positions up for election there is not a lot of sense in splitting votes across more than five candidates.

IS IT A SECRET BALLOT?

The result will be declared on 28 September and the Board will hold its initial meeting on 24 and 25 October. First order of business for the new Board will be election of the NZW Chair and Deputy, then receiving the Strategic Review report from PwC. • If you want further information about the election process please contact either Jeffrey Clark (Jeffrey@ nzwine.com) or myself (philip@nzwine.com).

Yes it is. NZW contracts Electionz to conduct the election and only the results are notified to members and to NZW. The votes of individual members remain absolutely confidential.

HOW WILL I KNOW WHO IS STANDING AND WHAT THEY STAND FOR?

Once nominations are in a booklet listing the candidates and their candidate statements will be compiled

WHAT HAPPENS AFTER THE ELECTION?

Deputy Chair Clive Jones

and circulated to all members. Candidates are also offered the opportunity to make a video available to members as well. There will be a dedicated elections page on the NZW website containing all this informa-

tion and much more.

CAN I SPLIT MY VOTES?

Yes you can. There are five positions up for election and members can split their votes between as few or as many candidates as they so

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18/07/2016 8:59 AM NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   33


OIV Update

STILL IN THE RUNNING NEW ZEALANDER Dr John Barker is still in the running for the position of Director General of the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV). The former Director General M Jean-Marie Aurand of France stepped down from the position in December, with the election of his replacement planned for July this year. There were two nominees, Pau Roca of Spain and Dr Barker. While a new president was elected in July, (Regina Vanderlinde of Brazil), the election for Director General was inconclusive. According to Jeffrey Clarke who was in attendance; “The election was very intense: we had three rounds of voting, and in each the two candidates were very close. After the third round the vote was still pretty evenly

split. Rather than keeping on having more rounds, the Chair decided to suspend voting until a new meeting on September 19th to continue the election.” Dr Barker was nominated by the New Zealand government for the position last year. He is well-known within the New Zealand wine industry and the OIV. Here at home he was the GM of New Zealand Winegrower’s Advocacy and Trade for 10 years. In terms of OIV he was a member for 11 years, representing New Zealand as an Export Delegate. Between 2009 and 2012, he was the President of the OIV’s law and economy commission. At the time of his nomination, Foreign Affairs Minister, Winston Peters said; “Dr Barker understands the challenges and opportunities that face the

organisation and he has both the vision and competence to ensure that the OIV can fulfil its role.” The OIV is an intergovernmental organisation which issues recommendations on viticulture and winemaking

practices. Based in Paris, with 46 members accounting for more than 85 percent of global wine production and nearly 80 percent of world consumption. No one outside of Europe has ever held the position of OIV Director General.

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

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Regions Marlborough

Not all Sauvignon is the same TESSA NICHOLSON

Appellation is not a word that you would normally associate with New Zealand wine. With old world connotations of controlling all aspects of grape growing from variety, to yield, to brix levels, it has always been something of an anathema to new world producers. THAT IS about to change with the launch of Appellation Marlborough Wine (AMW), an incorporated society that has one goal in mind – to safeguard Marlborough’s wine reputation. Actually it is even more specific – to protect the integrity and authenticity of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. For a wine to be certified as AMW, producers must meet certain criteria, as determined by members. They include; wine being made from 100 percent Marlborough fruit, wine must be bottled in New Zealand, grapes produced sustainably and grapes must be grown at appropriate cropping levels with the objective of enhancing quality. Committee member John Forrest says the term appellation

is the correct one and should not be confused with old world associations. “We have allowed some flexibility and sensibility in how we interpret some important parts of those rules. It is a modern interpretation of the word appellation for the practical benefit of both maker and consumer.” Given the importance of the variety not only to Marlborough but the entire New Zealand wine industry, the initiative wants to protect reputation in the international wine market. James Healy of Dog Point Wines says close to 50 percent of the region’s Sauvignon Blanc is currently exported in bulk, “without any requirement to its authenticity or quality. “Once it leaves New Zealand

One of the conditions of being a member of AMW is that all wine must be bottled in New Zealand.

there is no guarantee, no matter what anyone says, that it (will end up on the shelf) as high quality, Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.” Committee members agree that the criteria to adhere to cropping levels is not a one size fits all in the region. “There is quite a variance in vine spacing and vine numbers in the region,” committee chair Ivan Sutherland says. “We also need to recognise soil type and sub regional influence. We believe that the yield parameters

will be standard practice that people will be happy with. If a wine is made from fruit cropped that is over the parameter, the producer can asked for the wine to be subjected to a tasting.” “That is the pragmatic approach to the classic appellation system,” Forrest adds. However this is not to say AMW does not have rules to ensure members comply to its aims. “It’s a bit like a great white shark from a distance. It can quickly get to you and it has very sharp teeth. We deliberately struc-

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The AMW committee from left; Ivan Sutherland, Fiona Turner, John Forrest, Clive Jones, John Buchanan, James Healy and Yang Shen.

tured it that way, so we could get brutal if we had to.” Random tests will be undertaken if the Society has any reason to believe the quality parameters are not being observed. “But we are not expecting people to abuse this – or else why would they bother to join Z Wine Crowersup,Magazine Design ” Forrest says.-“It has been set up to be inclusive.” At this stage AMW only relates to Sauvignon Blanc, as that is the variety that is most open to damage, given the large amounts leaving the country in bulk. “It is a case of taking it one step at a time,” Sutherland says. The committee also says there are companies that may be 60mmx 180mm sending some of their wine off

shore in bulk, but if they have labels that are being bottled here in New Zealand, they will be able to utilise the AMW logo on the labels of those wines. With more than 40 wine producers already a member of AMW, the committee is expecting the interest to continue to grow. They are also adamant that it will help to increase the value of the wines in the market place. “This is a brand that we want world wine buyers to recognise as a wine of higher quality and better value for money, so we can differentiate ourselves from wines of lower price and lower quality,” says Sutherland. For one overseas critic the development of AMW should be a wake-up call to all Marl-

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borough producers. Swedish Master of Wine, Madeleine Strenwreth, says she applauds the brave actions of those involved to safeguard Marlborough’s reputation. “I would have loved to share the equal amount of praise over all the Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc producers,” she says. “But unfortunately there are too many with a strong potential of ruining the image of this world-class region by using this renowned brand as a vehicle to only serve their own short-term monetary purposes without thinking of the long-term sustainability and survival of the region and their hard working, passionate colleagues and neighbours in their local wine community. There is so much to

protect and celebrate and I raise a glass to all you great people of the industry. There is still a lot of hope for humanity.” New Zealand MW Bob Campbell agrees, saying he totally supports the initiative, labelling it “trail blazing”. “I believe that the AMW will increase the quality of top-end Sauvignon Blanc while sending a strong message to consumers and critics worldwide that all Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc is not equal.” At a conservative estimate, the current 40 AMW producers export over one million cases of Sauvignon Blanc. The logo denoting that the wine is certified as AMW will appear on a number of 2018 releases.

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Industry News

Opportunities and challenges Rabobank’s new horticulture and wine analyst believes there are a number of opportunities ahead for the New Zealand wine industry. There are also some challenges – legalised marijuana being one of them, as Tessa Nicholson discovers. HAYDEN HIGGINS began with Rabobank back in 2010 and just recently was appointed into a new role where he is responsible for the bank’s horticulture and wine sector research in New Zealand and Australia. He is replacing Marc Soccio, who left the bank last year. Based in Hawke’s Bay, Higgins is also one of 10 members of Rabobank’s Global Beverage Sector team, giving him insights into more than just the New Zealand sector. It is those insights that have shown him where the opportunities and challenges lie in the years ahead. Describing the New Zealand wine sector as being on a “progressive growth phase” for a number of years, he says the development of the US market has been a vital part of that. He believes it is also an important market in terms of returning value to exporters. “We look at the US market as a higher value, higher volume market, versus emerging markets such as China. And currently our view is there is possibly more value to be captured in the US for a wine

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producer such as New Zealand.” Higgins says we do need to be thinking about the potential impact of the much talked about trade wars that the US is promising with China and the EU. But again if they escalate further, it could offer up more opportunities for New Zealand. “The US is one of the largest exporters (of wine) into the EU by value and by volume. So if trade challenges are created between the two, it could create opportunities for New Zealand. But Europe is also an important market for Australia and other Southern Hemisphere producers, who will also want to be leveraging off that. So we may face competition into that extra market, although on the positive side, we have different wine varietals such as Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc.” In terms of challenges, Rabobank believes the rise of legalised marijuana in Canada and the US could pose a threat to the wine sector and the over-

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

Californian wine brand Barefoot Wines is one of a number who are taking advantage of the desire for single serve packaging. This is an opportunity for New Zealand producers to get into Hayden Higgins says.

all alcoholic beverage sector. ”If you look at the retail value as an example,” Higgins says, “wine in Canada was around US$12.5 billion in 2017. Cannabis was US$6.7 billion and most of that was obviously illegal or illicit sales. But what the trend in the US shows, is that once it becomes legalised in different states, there is quite a significant lift in usage.” In some states of the US, once legalised the growth rate was close to 16 percent. “It will be interesting to see how that might flow into the beverage market as an alternative option. To some consumers


“The US Is one of the largest exporters (of wine) into the EU by value and by volume. So if trade challenges are created between the two, it could create opportunities for New Zealand.” it will have no effect, some it will become a substitution and for others it may be complimentary. But certainly the early indications are that adoption is occurring in some states, faster than the consumption of wine.” Higgins also believes New Zealanders need to be thinking carefully about packaging, as there are a number of opportunities to increase market share simply by changing the format our wine is sold in. Wine in a can is becoming a trend in the US, if not in Europe. But all over the globe there is growing demand for single serve formats, including smaller bottle sizes. “If you are exporting into a market with a premium quality wine the challenge could be, are

you going to be able to attract that new consumer if they are only looking for a single size serve? That is a challenge, but one that could be turned into an opportunity.” Rabokbank undertakes a number of horticulture and wine sector research projects, looking at issues of interest to industry stakeholders. Higgins says he is keen to hear from industry participants to discuss ideas for research focused on the New Zealand market. “We want our research to be meaningful and relevant so I am happy to engage on topics that will add value to them” he said. If you would like to discuss further, Hayden Higgins’ email is: hayden.higgins@rabobank. com

“And the clear winner in the Botrytis control category is…”

What impact will the legalisation of marijuana in parts of America and Canada have on wine sales?

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Agenda Events

SAUVIGNON

19

PROGRAMME

The venues are booked, the wineries are on board and now the organisers of Sauvignon 2019 have set the programme.

Tim Hanni MW

THE BIGGEST New Zealand Winegrowers’ event of next year kicks off in Blenheim on January 28. Over the following three days the attendees will be feted by people who grow, sell and make wine. Marketing, wine styles and national and international diversity will be discussed by a line-up of experts in their fields.

DAY 1 – PLACE

This day is all about exploring just how Place plays such an important role in shaping growth, style and structure of Sauvignon Blanc, as defined by the sub-themes of Coastal, Mountains and River. Guest speakers on this day include Sam Harrop MW, Brian Bicknell, Emma Jenkins MW and international superstar, Matt Kramer. An interna-

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

tional tasting will highlight the impact Place has on the finished wines.

DAY 2 – PURITY

The purity of New Zealand’s unique climate will be a feature of day 2. As will sustainability, the lighter wines programme and the myths and truths about matching Sauvignon Blanc with food. A feature of this day will be the guest speaker Tim Hanni MW, author of the highly successful book; Why You Like the Wines You Like. Involved with food and wine for over 30 years, Hanni brings a wealth of knowledge to the event.

DAY 3 – PURSUIT

The third and final day looks at Pursuit in all forms; from on-premise stories, to attracting new Sauvignon Blanc consumers, to achieving excellence. Alongside Cameron Douglas MS and Emma Jenkins MW, will be Paul Mabray – the founder of US company VinTank. Paul is credited with being at the forefront of all major digital trends for the wine industry, and someone who believes being able to understand the changing behaviour of consumers and their needs is going to be vital for the future of the wine industry.

ISBC 28-30 Jan 2019, Marlborough Sauvignonnz.com


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Agenda News

RONAN SAYBURN MS TO HOST SOMMIT™ World renowned Master Sommelier Ronan Sayburn has been confirmed as co-host of Sommit™ 2019, to be held in the Hawke’s Bay next year. MR SAYBURN who attended New Zealand Winegrowers very first Sommit™ in 2015, will join our very own Master of Wine Stephen Wong to host the event. Eighteen leading international sommeliers, all recipients of the 2019 Sommit™ Scholarship, will spend their time in New Zealand learning about our

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

wine, with emphasis on the facets that resonate with the sommelier community. Sommit™ is closed-door and sommelier-only, a very different kind of tasting directed by the attendees based on what they taste in the glass. The wines are a celebration of the lesser known aspects of New Zealand wine. New Zealand Winegrowers Global Marketing Manager Chris Yorke says having Mr Sayburn host the event, alongside Mr Wong, is an indication of the prestige that Sommit™ now enjoys amongst the international wine community.

“We are delighted to have Ronan join us in New Zealand and know he and Stephen will show our international guests expressions of New Zealand wine that will surprise them,” Mr Yorke says. To date, the New Zealand Winegrowers Sommelier Scholarship has hosted five Sommit™ events for 79 sommeliers from 15 countries. Previous Sommit™ events have seen a marked increase in listings of New Zealand wines in top international restaurants.

Sommit™ 2019 25-26 January Hawke’s Bay nzwine.com


News Innovation

Multi-Level-Probe wins US Innovation award TESSA NICHOLSON

A SMALL Marlborough based company has taken out a major innovation award in the US, for a design that provides winemakers with the chance to see what is happening in the tank. The Innovation and Quality awards are based in the Napa Valley and aim to recognise innovation’s that lead to high quality and ultra-premium winemaking. For VinWizard the acknowledgement that their Multi-Level-Probe (MLP) was considered the best, was a welcome surprise. Owner/founder David Gill says the probe which was devel-

oped in Marlborough, provides winemakers with an added tool when it comes to fermentation. It is especially useful in red winemaking, and has been eagerly adopted by 160 wineries worldwide. The process, which seems ridiculously simple, makes you wonder why someone hasn’t thought of it before. A stainless steel pole, with up to 32 sensors inside, is placed inside a stainless steel or oak tank. Each of the sensors monitors the current temperature of the fermenting juice, allowing the winemaker to make deci-

sions about pumping over well in advance of anything going wrong. The MLP shows a cross section of all the temperatures along a vertical cross section of

the tank, all the way from the top to the bottom. “This is the first time we have been able to see inside a tank, to see what is happening in the layers of juice,” Gill says. “In the past it has always been guess work.” In winemaking it is vital that the temperature remain consistent throughout the fermentation, but Gill says there are issues with traditional methods such as pumping over. “It can be fermenting along nicely and then they pump it over and all of a sudden the ferment stops. We have seen that

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“This is the first time we have been able to see inside a tank, to see what is happening in the layers of juice. In the past it has always been guess work.” happen a lot in America – and it’s because there is this big plug of cold juice at the bottom of the tank. With the MLP we can anticipate that and set up the pump over before it becomes an issue.” Every winery tank has different points of ferment activity, Gill says, depending on the refrigeration effectiveness and the tank design. Each requires pump overs to ensure the ferment is mixed and oxygenated, while maintaining a consistent temperature. The problem he says is how often and how long should those pump overs be? “They are often based on assumptions. Now the winemaker can dynamically see the effects of pump overs in the entire tank.” The ability to control those actions has seen a significant decrease in power consumption for wineries Gill says – between 30 and 50 percent. While the

majority of clients are utilising the probe for red winemaking, the cost benefits for white wine like Sauvignon Blanc are also high. “With Sauvignon Blanc you don’t need to agitate a tank continuously. With the MLP you can see the layering and do something about it when it happens in real time. Just run the agitators for an hour and stop – they don’t have to run 24/7 to keep the tank mixed.” While the current probes are for 50,000 litre to 100,000 litre tanks, Gill says they are currently working on a new probe that will be suitable for oak barrels. “This will be a wireless probe, working on the same principle. We should be releasing that in the next six months.” Maybe a second innovation award could be on the cards in 2019. tessa.nicholson@me.com

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   45


Consumer Survey

Are buyers in tune with consumers? TESSA NICHOLSON

Consumers are who got New Zealand wine to where they are today and they should never be forgotten. THOSE WERE the prophetic words from Master of Wine Direceu Vianna Junior, who addressed the recent Lallemond conference in Blenheim. Which is the reasoning behind his idea of surveying consumers, wine journalists and buyers regarding their preferences. His gut instinct was that consumers were being forgotten in the melee of the wine world, with too much emphasis being placed on what critics and buyers liked. Junior also believes that could be why wine volumes are dropping in the UK and will continue to do so unless the issue is addressed. “If we don’t do something for

46   // 

the low involvement consumer, we are losing them,” he told the conference. “The UK figures are telling us we are going backwards on volume, we need to do something.” With the backing of the Institute of Masters of Wine and Lallemand, a social survey has been established, with New Zealand playing an integral part. That was a deliberate decision Junior said. “It made sense to do something with New Zealand as you have developed an amazing image in the consumer’s mind for premium, added value.” With the help of Saint Clair Family Wines in Marlborough,

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

the survey began. Four Sauvignon Blancs, from four individual sites and in four different styles were produced in 2017. The four styles were tropical, herbaceous, citrus and barrel fermented. Each wine was labeled differently (see below) and were all tasted blind by a panel of UK individuals, selected by MW student, Sarah Benson, also the wine buyer for The Co-op in the UK. At pains to point out this survey was not scientifically based, the aim was to discover which style consumers preferred. But alongside a panel of 247 frequent wine consumers (meaning they buy wine

every two weeks), Benson also included 20 wine journalists and 20 buyers. They were asked how much they typically spent on a bottle of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. Interestingly Benson said, the consumers and journalists were much more aligned to what they “typically” spent on a bottle New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc than the buyers, who were in a higher price bracket. All four of the Saint Clair wines were tasted blind in differing orders and each wine was accompanied by a list of 10 questions. Individually the participants had to express their aroma and flavour preferences between each of the wines, list which provided desrciptors they felt were accurate, as well as being given the chance to provide descriptors of their own. And that is where the first anomalies between each of the groups raised its head. Take the citrus style Sauvignon Blanc for example. The differences between what consumers smelt and tasted were very different to what journalists and buyers did. The consumers used more simplistic vocab Benson said. “Are we talking their language?” It was a similar picture when it came to the tropical and herbaceous wines. Consumer’s had a wider range of descriptors than either the journalists or buyers, with very few corresponding crossovers. The only wine that showed any similari-


All four of the Saint Clair wines were tasted blind in differing orders and each wine was accompanied by 10 questions.

CONSUMER PREFERENCE Favourite

Least Favourite

Least Favourite

ties in terms of descriptors was the barrel fermented style, with ences for each group. oaky being the dominant word “Interesting with the buyers, used by all three groups. you almost have an inverse prefSo what about when it came erence for the wines, compared to deciding which wine was to the consumer,” Benson said. the most preferred? Was there “The question is, are the buyany corresponding cross over ers buying what the consumer between what consumers liked, wants, or are they buying what and what the journalists and they (personally) like?” buyers preferred? It is a similar story when it JMS WINEGROWER 1/2 PAGE 180W X 120H MM Above is the Aroma prefer- comes to flavour preferences.

BUYER PREFERENCE

Citrus

Citrus

Tropical

Tropical

Barrel

Herbal

Herbal

Herbal

Citrus

Barrel

Tropical

Barrel

CONSUMER Favourite

JOURNALIST PREFERENCE

JOURNALISTS

BUYERS

Tropical

Citrus

Herbal

Citrus

Tropical

Tropical

Herbal

Herbal

Citrus

Barrel

Barrel

Barrel

“Journalists and consumers are on the same page, but once again the buyers are different to both, almost inverse. “There are so many differences between the buyer preference and the consumer preference, it is a wake-up call,” Benson says. “Are we buying the right wines to begin with? And should production be driven

more by consumer preference?” That is a question that will require answering if the volumes of wine sales continue to drop in the coming years. Is enough being done to attract consumers or has too much emphasis been placed on the wrong end of the chain – what buyers like and prefer? tessa.nicholson@me.com

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   47


Women in Wine

Mentoring programme launched

Tracy Taylor

JOELLE THOMSON

Connection and sharing information are key aims of the new Women in Wine Pilot Mentoring Programme launched in July. THE PROGRAMME is the latest initiative of Women in Wine New Zealand, which was set up in 2017 by NZ Winegrowers. There are eight mentors in the initial pilot programme, each of them a representative from the country’s wine regions. They are Jane Hunter, Erica Crawford, Carol Bunn, Kate Radburnd, Jenn Parr, Priscilla Muir, Natalie Christensen and Tracy Taylor. Each mentor had to apply for the volunteer role. Natalie Christiansen

Jane Hunter

48   // 

It is anticipated that the number of mentors will grow as the programme evolves so that greater numbers of mentors are available to young people within the wine industry. “Mentoring is a great way to fast track someone’s skills and knowledge. Not only does the individual benefit, but also those around them. This programme is going to play an important role in growing our future leaders and strengthening the wine industry as a whole,” says Philip Gregan, CEO of New Zealand Winegrowers. The idea for the mentoring programme came from Sarah Szegota in 2016 when she worked at Winegrowers. She is now the global PR and communications manager at Villa Maria Wines. Its three aims are to connect, inform and change, she says. Mentor and winemaker Carol Bunn can relate with the need for connection for young winemakers. “One of the things I found hardest when I began working with wine was not having someone to talk to about things I didn’t know. I found it difficult to know what questions to ask and when I did ask, my questions were

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

sometimes left unanswered. This is why the new mentoring programme is so important because it can enable us to pass on skills and share knowledge so people can learn to trust themselves and trust their intuition.” NZ Winegrowers board member and Wairarapa winemaker Katherine Jacobs of Big Sky Wines says the wine industry can be an intimidating world for newcomers and sees the mentoring programme as having great potential to redress some of this. “I don’t think we are very welcoming or inclusive in wine when it comes to new people. It’s easy to be intimidated if you’re new to wine tastings and it’s important for us to be more inclusive as an industry.” Jacobs suggests there may be men who need mentors too and that the programme could grow in time to include a wider focus. T h e pro g r am m e i s initially limited to those who are levy paying members of NZ Winegrowers, but this, too, could be broadened with time to include others working in the wine industry who have valuable experience and knowledge to share with young people. Mentors not included in the above photos include; Erica Crawford, Jenn Parr and Priscilla Muir. mailme@joellethomson.com

Carol Bunn

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News Biosecurity

Biosecurity team to grow TESSA NICHOLSON

50   // 

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018


Actively protects for longer

Just one of the threats facing the New Zealand wine industry, the brown mamorated stink bug.

IT IS no surprise that biosecurity is one of the greatest concerns facing the New Zealand wine industry at the moment. Images of ships carrying imported cars from Japan being turned away at the Port of Auckland due to large numbers of brown marmorated stink bugs (BMSB) being found on board, are enough to send anyone into a state of panic. Which is why New Zealand Winegrowers are upping the personnel in the biosecurity office. CEO Philip Gregan says the board agreed to employ a second biosecurity officer in an effort to ensure the industry keeps on top of potential incursions. “We see biosecurity issues as both a growing threat and a growing opportunity for the industry,” he says. “The threat is; we are seeing greatly increased pressure from brown marmorated stink bug at the border. The opportunity is; we have signed the biosecurity Government Industry Agreement and that requires us to be more actively involved in preparing the industry for incursions when they occur – not if.” Gregan says if industry members weren’t concerned with the potential for an incursion of BMSB prior to this year, the “exceptional” numbers discovered on ships in February

“We see biosecurity issues as both a growing threat and a growing opportunity for the industry.” were enough to get the message home. “We have seen with mycoplasma bovis in the dairy industry and with PSA in Kiwifruit a few years back, that these (biosecurity) issues arise and they can have devastating consequences very quickly, so we need to be well prepared.” Part of that preparation he says is ensuring that growers are filling in the vineyard register and ensuring all details are correct. “If we don’t know where the vineyards are and there is a problem, that becomes a major issue in itself.” Recruitment for a second biosecurity officer is now underway and the new appointment will join Dr Edwin Massey based in Marlborough. tessa.nicholson@me.com

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Biosecurity Update

Latest developments in biosecurity DR EDWIN MASSEY

Biosecurity risk is never static. With fluctuations due to climate change, trade and passenger dynamics and volume, and the spread of global pests and disease, a lot can change - even over a 12-month period. RECENTLY, AT the 2018 Grape Days technical workshops, New Zealand Winegrowers (NZW) shared the latest information available on three key biosecurity threats; Brown Marmorated Stink Bug; Harlequin Ladybird and Grapevine Red Blotch Virus. NZW also highlighted how members can help protect their vineyards by implementing biosecurity risk management practices.

BROWN MARMORATED STINK BUG

The 2017/18 high risk season, which ended at the beginning of May, has seen a record number of Brown Marmorated Stink Bugs (BMSB) intercepted at the border. Primarily, this was due to significant increases on two pathways; containerised goods from Italy; and used cars from Japan. Consistent with submissions from NZW, MPI moved to ensure offshore treatment and other risk mitigation measures on these pathways to manage the risk. Nonetheless, it is likely that next year’s high risk season will be equally challenging. Consequently, over the past 12 months NZW’s readiness activities for BMSB have been a high priority. In July 2017 NZW signed the

52   // 

The harlequin ladybird is very distinctive. It is larger (6-10mm long) and more robust than a common spotted ladybird and has a range of different colour variations. BMSB Operational Agreement; partnering with other industry organisations and MPI, to help mitigate the risk of a population establishing itself. Two key readiness projects included NZW’s visit, as part of an New Zealand delegation, to Santiago Chile to learn more about a lure-based surveillance grid for detecting BMSB in an urban environment. Early results suggest the lure we deployed is effective at detecting BMSB but not powerful enough to be an eradication tool. Secondly, NZW has been heavily involved in the EPA application to allow the import of samurai wasp, a BMSB biocontrol, into secure containment for release in the event of an incursion.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

This application garnered considerable support across the wine industry and wider horticulture sectors. NZW presented at a hearing on this application in July to further highlight just how important it is to add biocontrol to our toolbox to combat this highest threat biosecurity risk.

HARLEQUIN LADYBIRD

The harlequin ladybird was first detected in Auckland in the summer of 2016. Throughout 2017/18 the ladybird has spread throughout Hawke’s Bay, Gisborne and Nelson and has also been detected in Marlborough. The harlequin ladybird is very distinctive. It is larger (6-10mm long) and more robust than a common spotted ladybird and has a range of different colour

variations. It has a distinct M-shaped marking on its face plate. Over the winter, it is most likely to be seen in clusters, sheltering in areas protected from the elements. The harlequin ladybird is a predatory insect that does not cause direct injury to grapes. Nonetheless, overseas they have often been found seeking shelter in the middle of clusters during harvest. These ladybirds contain chemical compounds called methoxpyrazines which, if released, give off flavors and odours to wine produced with infested fruit. In Canada, the threshold for taint is as little as 200 ladybirds per tonne of harvested fruit. As we approach vintage 2019 it is possible that we will begin to see clusters of ladybirds in the vineyard, especially in Hawke’s Bay and Gisborne where the pest is well established. Surveillance is the best way to mitigate biosecurity risk. Viticulturists should begin to monitor for ladybirds several weeks prior to the anticipated harvest date. Overseas experience highlights just how unpredictable these ladybirds can be. The most likely time for a ladybird infestation is where cooler nights (less


A cluster of harlequin ladybirds found in Hawke’s Bay.

than 10C) are followed by warm days. New Zealand Winegrowers will be producing a fact sheet to provide further guidance on surveillance and management for this pest.

GRAPEVINE RED BLOTCH VIRUS

Grapevine Red Blotch Virus (GRBV) is associated with red blotch disease that was first reported in California in 2008. GRBV symptoms generally occur in late summer as irregular red blotching in leaf blades. The veins of affected leaves can turn partially or fully red. Symptoms are typically confused with grapevine leaf roll disease and without specific laboratory testing visual diagnosis is very difficult.

The primary impact of GRBV is on the accumulation of total soluble solids. Typically, infected vines can be as much as 4-5 units lower than healthy vines. Fruit from diseased vines also show increased acidity. It has yet to be comprehensively determined whether GRBV has a significant impact on vine vigor or fruit yield. This virus is vectored by insects. In the United States the Three-Cornered Alfalfa Hopper is confirmed to be a vector of GRBV. This insect is not present in New Zealand – however we do have a range of other leaf hopping insects. It is not currently known what other New Zealand insects may vector this virus.

Red blotch disease symptoms on US Pinot Noir grapevine (Deborah Fravel).

LOW RISK OF POTENTIAL ENTRY TO NEW ZEALAND IN NURSERY MATERIAL

NZW has identified that there is a small risk that GBRV may have entered New Zealand on nursery stock prior to the commencement of quarantine testing for GRBV in 2013. Prior to this time, little was known about the virus and it had not been fully described. This made it impossible to test for this virus as part of the quarantine process. NZW has engaged with the vine nurseries who have imported material from the United States between 2007 and 2013. These nurseries are commencing a testing process to determine if GRBV is present in their collection. NZW has developed a new fact sheet that outlines key information

about GRBV’s symptoms, impacts on wine production and methods of spread: https://www.nzwine.com/ members/grow/biosecurity/ current-biosecurity-issues/ Next summer if your vines are suffering unusual symptoms you should get them tested. MPI will test suspect material for free. Contact them at: pathogentesting@mpi.govt.nz and inform New Zealand Winegrowers. Remember if you see anything unusual please: Catch it; Snap it; Report it. Call the MPI biosecurity hotline 0800 80 99 66. If you have any questions about biosecurity you can call New Zealand Winegrowers Biosecurity and Emergency Response Manager Ed Massey 021 1924 924 or Edwin. massey@nzwine.com

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   53


News Technology

Wine fingerprint technology JEAN GRIERSON

Kiwi scientists are using chemical fingerprinting technique to definitively and scientifically prove if a wine is really what it says on the bottle. ORITAIN HAS established itself as one of the world’s foremost research companies mapping food product origins and provenances. The international company which had its roots in the Chemistry Department at Otago University now bases its head office in Dunedin, with branches in Australia and the UK. “Anything that ultimately is grown or derived from a soil has a distinct chemical fingerprint,” said scientist Dr Katherine Jones. The ground-breaking work could have far-reaching benefits for the wine industry in brand protection overseas. “Science can tell you the true origin of a product. Plants and animals are creatures of their environment and what they eat or drink is absorbed into their flesh. And within what they eat or drink are natural concentrations of trace elements and isotopes. These are what are measured.” By collecting samples from a genuine product the scientists at Oritain analyse both stable isotopes and trace elements - including essential elements sodium potassium, zinc, iron and some 35 others. These they run through unique statistical models to determine the product’s ‘origin fingerprint.’ Oritain can then conduct testing against this ‘origin fingerprint’ to scientifi-

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cally verify if the product is consistent with its claimed origin. The science used by Oritain originated in the criminal forensic field where it has been used to investigate fraud. Dr Jones said it has been thoroughly peerreviewed and subject to numerous scientific journal publications over the last 20 years. It has been estimated that food and beverage fraud globally is costing businesses US$40 billion a year. According to a 2014 report to US Congress, up to 10% of all commercially sold food products are affected by fraud. Dr Jones said fraud examples were common in China, with apples and honey being major targets of re-labelling. Through fingerprinting it was now possible to identify at which point in a production process a new factor was introduced, as for example the addition of melamine to high-protein feed and milkbased products, to artificially inflate protein values in products that may have been diluted. Chemical fingerprinting can work alongside the blockchain based traceability process used extensively by the wine and food industry through GS1 and bar codes, which relies on labelling and packaging,

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

Dr Katherine Jones

said Dr Jones. Chemical fingerprinting authenticated the blockchain traceability by testing the actual product, proving unequivocally its regional provenance, she said. This could be broken down even further to a farm or vineyard level or even an individual block as variations in soil and environmental properties result in slightly different fingerprints. Dr Jones said Oritain plans to continually develop a comprehensive database of wine profiles from all of New Zealand’s wine regions. Members of the Central Otago Women in Wine group recently agreed to

collectively support the project. Each winery would be asked to send one bottle of wine for analysis, along with a fact sheet identifying precise vineyard location and other sub-regional data. Samples were also being sourced from Marlborough and Hawkes Bay. “If anyone is interested in contributing knowledge to this, the scientists would be very interested to collaborate,” said Dr Jones. Company account manager Lucinda Garside said producers were now seeing the fingerprinting as an insurance policy, and they were starting to see the benefits of using Oritain as a third party protection of their brand. They could use the Oritain certification trademark on their bottles. “It’s robust science, and it’s been done for a long time. But now we’re trying to make it a more palatable story,” she said. jean.grierson@nzsouth.co.nz


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Helen Morrison SENIOR WINEMAKER, VILLA MARIA MARLBOROUGH TESSA NICHOLSON

For someone who couldn’t wait to leave school and get away from studying, Helen Morrison has sure come a long way. These days she holds the senior winemaking role at Marlborough’s Villa Maria winery. A career path that surprised all who know her, but one that was determined by wanting a career that she passionately loved.

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“IT DOESN’T matter how much you get paid, if you have a really boring job, it’s like a waste of your time and your life,” she says. Having left Nelson as soon as high school finished; “because I wanted to move somewhere larger as Nelson seemed so tiny,” she undertook a one-year diploma in travel and tourism in Wellington. She worked for four years as a travel agent before moving to London for an extended O.E. It wasn’t easy getting into the travel industry over there, so Morrison concentrated on temp work, mainly in insurance companies and banks. From London to Ireland, again working in banks, was where her epiphany occurred. It all centred around a small wine

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

shop, run by a New Zealand woman, who just happened to be an ex winemaker. “She did tastings once a month at the Lansdowne Tennis Club and each month there was a winemaker talking about their particular wines. I think it was those really fascinating and engaging people hosting those tastings that influenced me. It didn’t matter which country or what wines they were representing, they were so passionately enthused about what they were sharing and doing. I could see that was the type of job I was looking for.” Still in Ireland, she asked her parents in Nelson to find out more about the Lincoln Viticulture and Oenology course. Her

Dad was thrilled given he had been to Lincoln to do Farm Ag many years earlier, but Morrison admits they were both baffled at her choice to become involved in the wine industry. “They both thought I was pretty crazy given it was such a strange thing to be deciding I wanted to do.” She wasn’t even sure if it was winemaking or viticulture she wanted to specialise in – at least until she had some “challenging” work experiences among the vines. “I went back to Nelson in the winter semester and did a couple of weeks pruning at Seifrieds. That was more than challenging. I remember it being bitterly cold with a frost and


then the day would cloud over and it would never warm up. I thought to myself, what have I got myself into here?” A summer work experience on Waiheke Island provided much better weather conditions, but again Morrison says the challenge of dealing with vines that never stopped growing in the conditions, was again a challenge. “I had to write up my work experience vineyard report and was talking about there being three fruiting wires. The lecturer marking my paper was crossing out the three and replacing it with two. I stomped into his office and said ‘I guarantee you there were three, because I spent all summer lifting them.’ ” When it came to winery work experience, her time at Forrest Estate in Marlborough was the match that ignited her love for winemaking. “I found it fascinating. It was small enough that I got

to be involved and do a bit of everything. I was in the lab, the winery and helping host a few tastings.” She must have made an impression because she talked owner John Forrest into giving her a job once she graduated. Morrison stayed there for four years before moving to Indevin, a contract winemaking facility, with around 30 clients. It was a big step up, in terms of size and required skills. Especially as she had to make wine to specific instructions from the clients. “They were all starting off from the same base material, but everyone’s approach to harvesting the grapes, their approach to clarifying the juice, their approach to fermenting and the blended and finished product from that point on was quite different. It might take 10 to 15 years to gain that much information by working with each of those individuals. “But at Indevin I got to see it

Ready to pick yet? Helen and helper Rocco check the grapes pre harvest.

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all at once.” In 2014, Morrison was appointed senior winemaker Villa Maria, Marlborough. She is still very hands on, but now is involved heavily in the logistical side of the winery. She is responsible for employing the staff for vintage – which sees the permanent 12 staff members joined by up to 60 extras. “Managing people is prob-

ably the hardest part of winemaking – just like any job. Choosing successfully 60 extras who are going to be able to work together and get along, trying to spread it so you don’t have too many people speaking a language other than English and spreading the experience levels across all of that isn’t always easy.” Despite that, she says vin-

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tage is her favourite time of the entire year. Yes the hours are long, the days off non-existent, but as she says, that’s what the job is all about. The one shot a year when she gets to produce something special. “I often reference the difference between winemaking and beer brewing, we only have that one shot, that one time of the year to be doing our craft work.

Brewing is similar in terms of chemistry and science, but you can be putting another batch of beer down any time you like. You don’t get a second chance with winemaking.” Besides being a senior winemaker, Morrison is also a wine judge, and a member of the NZSVO committee. She is supportive of the Women in Wine Initiative, hoping it encourages

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women to stay in the industry. “It doesn’t really matter how those of us who are in senior roles got here, it is more about how can we share all we know to keep others in the industry?” Her advice to all new entrants is to align themselves with the right role models. “When I was at Forrest Wines, John was launching his John Forrest Collection. He was using Belinda Jackson to consult and help pitch the wines at the right place in the market and also help craft the wines. Watching and listening to her gave me a very different perspective. She was prepared to say what she saw and she gave me the confidence really early on to be trusting in my own palate.” There were two other role models she cites as being important in her development. Jeff Clarke when he was winemaker at Ara Wines (one of Indevin’s clients she worked with). “He had a quiet, firm approach to

the way he handled his wine and got things done.” The other was Ben Glover, whom she got to know through Indevin’s and Lion Nathan’s relationship. “He had a unique approach to the way he blended wines, but it was a way that my brain worked too. That has influenced me on the way I go forward in the blending exercise.” Her advice to women in the New Zealand wine industry is to; “put yourself in situations where you can be networking and meeting others. That is something that comes far easier to males, they are unafraid to reach out to others. Females I think tend to hold back on that. So put yourself into situations whether that be stewarding at wine shows, or attending whatever networking and wine events that are going on. Make sure your path is crossing with others who are out there.” tessa.nicholson@me.com

GROWING THE FUTURE OF THE NEW ZEALAND WINE INDUSTRY Who will be the Bayer Young Viticulturist of the Year 2018? AUCKLAND/NORTHERN Jake Dromgool, The Landing

HAWKE’S BAY Jono Hunt, Delegats

WAIRARAPA Scott Lanceley, Te Kairanga

CENTRAL OTAGO Annabel Bulk, Felton Road

MARLBOROUGH Ben Richards, Indevin

WAIPARA Zoe Marychurch

A huge thank you to all our sponsors for making this competition possible

NATIONAL FINAL Winner receives: Hyundai Kona for a year, $5000 AGMARDT Travel Grant, $2000 cash, Leadership Week and support to Young Hort. Winner will be announced at the Bragato dinner on 30 th August 2018.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   59


News Succession

Exit planning TESSA NICHOLSON

The statistics speak for themselves. Sixty-one percent of all business owners in New Zealand are aged over 50. When it comes to agribusiness, the figures are even higher. Which means there are a lot of individuals throughout the country who are looking closely at ways of exiting their business or passing it on to family members. ACCORDING TO the 2015 ANZ Privately Owned Business Barometer (POBB), 50 percent of agri businesses have some sort of plan being developed or in place. But that leaves the other 50 percent with no transition plan. And there are a number of grape growers and winery owners who fall into that latter category. Take the country’s largest

wine region Marlborough, for example. According to Wine Marlborough figures, there are 140 vineyards of 20 to 50 ha, mainly run by couples aged between 50 and 70 years. On top of that there are 470 small vineyards, with many run by retired couples. What are the options for these people to make a successful exit? Rob Simcic is the head of

food and beverage for ANZ bank and says discussion about succession and/or exit plans cannot begin soon enough. “There is a saying about when is the best time to plant a tree? Thirty years ago. The second best time is right now, today. It is the same with having succession discussions.” Especially he says as times have changed and the days

that an agi business would be handed down to the one member of the family are well and truly over. “Those days are long gone. Societal or generational perception of fairness or equity have changed. You combine that with the fact people are living longer and need more money, it is quite a different dynamic to what it was even 20 or 30 years ago.”

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Taking the lid off innovation. Rob Simcic – ANZ head of Food & Beverage NZ.

“There is a saying about when is the best time to plant a tree? Thirty years ago. The second best time is right now, today. It is the same with having succession discussions.” Yet there is often an emotional attachment to the land that sees the parents wanting to ensure it stays in family hands, whether that is practical or not. That emotional aspect is something that needs to be weighed heavily against the practicality of passing something on, Simcic says. Often it cannot be done without gaining independent advice. “It can be very hard as a family, to remove emotion from the equation. People have lived and breathed that business for a very long time. Often the children have been born into it, grown up with it, so it is a heck of a challenge. Which is why it is highly recommended to bring in independents and get everybody’s point of view out on the table.” With the change in lifestyle

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and employment, many of a land owner’s off spring may not even be interested in taking over the business. Simcic says that doesn’t necessarily mean the business has to be sold – instead there are a number of options that include utilising the skills of everyone involved. “Sometimes it is not about family members coming back to run the business, but they might have an interest in the governance of the business. It doesn’t necessarily mean they have to be back here. They may or may not have an ownership stake, but they may have a valuable input, skills they can bring to the table. That is why a model of separating out governance, ownership and day to day management may create a very different family conversation.” Given how many vineyards

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“If you look at some of the long standing global family businesses, they have taken all sorts of turns in direction.”

are run by the husband and wife, doing everything with the help of contractors, doesn’t have to be the model going forward. In fact, it is probably not the best use of resources. “They are trying to find superman or woman to replace them, but if they break it down there are all these options that open up and provide potential pathways for the next generation. And maybe not even just for the next generation.” There is the leasing option, which is proving very popular in Marlborough especially. Wine companies whose long-term option for fruit may be coming to an end, are looking to shore up supply and leasing vineyards on a short term or longer basis. The owner retains the property and gains a steady income. This can be a good option for owners who aren’t quite ready to sell, or are waiting for family members to be in a position to take over. Some other options if family members are not interested, include bringing a valued employee into the business. Not common here in New Zealand, it is a valued option in places like the US. Then there is the option of share farming – where there is a contractual arrangement between the asset owner and someone who will bring in labour and management skills, with revenue split on a

A model that can help ownership move smoothly towards succession.

proportional basis. Again, not something that is happening a lot in viticulture, but is a successful model in the dairy industry. While both of these options provide a succession plan that doesn’t include family members, it doesn’t provide the owner with a release of capital. One question raised at a recent Succession Seminar held in Blenheim, was how do you protect your asset for future generations? Especially given that only one percent of all businesses make it beyond the third generation. Simcic says that is reflective of the challenges that businesses have. “If you take a business that is worth X number of dollars built up by generation one, and generation two comes in and builds it to X point five, there is very little available to cater for the increased number of family members coming in at generation three. Structures need to be established and

the right skills employed within and from outside the family. If that is done, there is no reason it can’t go on for another three generations or more.” Growth needs to be planned to allow for equitable financial security for future generations coming through. That might mean expanding or even diversification. “If you look at some of the long standing global family businesses, they have taken all sorts of turns in direction,” Simcic says. In the meantime, talking about the future, laying all the cards on the table, gaining independent advice and removing emotion from the equation need to be done as soon as possible. It is never too early to start the conversation. For example, in Europe, the average age when these sorts of conversations begin is age eight. As said – it is never too early. tessa.nicholson@me.com

NOW READ IT ONLINE GENERAL NEWS PEOPLE PROFILES AND MUCH MORE... REGIONAL UPDATES OPINION

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Reading the magazine online has never been easier.


Agenda News

A road well-travelled JEAN GRIERSON

NEW ZEALAND’S wine industry is as strong as it’s ever been, with wine exports increasing in value and a robust new board structure advocating for all sectors, says Steve Green, who has stepped down from the board of New Zealand Winegrowers after six years as its chairman. “I’m pretty confident the industry is headed to good things in the future,” he says. In 2008 the global financial crisis coincided with a big wine vintage across all major New Zealand wine regions. Ten years on prices are gradually restoring, while the wine industry has more focus on quality production rather than being supplydriven. Amongst other NZW milestones during Green’s time on

the board were; increased focus on biosecurity, and the restructuring of industry groups into the new NZW corporation (amalgamating the NZ Wine Institute and NZ Grapegrowers Council). “It’s absolutely unique in the world to have an organisation that does that… representing and advocating for the interests of its entire grape and wine industry. We have a good working relationship between the three components - small wineries, larger wineries and growers. And the fact that I’m being succeeded by a grape grower as head of the wine industry – that’s fantastic.” Having exchanged lake vistas from their Bannockburn Central Otago home for views over.

“I’m pretty confident the industry is headed to good things in the future.”

the Nelson Bays where they are overseeing the building of their new home, Green, and his wife

Barbara Robertson-Green are finding that “retirement” doesn’t mean a slackening in the pace of

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life but more a change in direction. Their wine journey started in 1994 when they first planted vines on a rabbit-infested block of land on the shores of the yet to be filled Lake Dunstan. They were living in Dunedin at the time when just a handful of vineyards were being planted around Bannockburn and the Cromwell basin in Central Otago. The Green’s knowledge was academic, with some practical experience as enthusiastic consumers. They loved Pinot Noir and were impressed with the efforts of pioneers Alan Brady and Rolf Mills in the early 1990s. “We’d always been interested in wine, and then we saw there was an opportunity for us to be part of a young industry and move away from our corporate roles,” said Green. They founded Carrick Wines, making the first two vintages under the Mt Difficulty label which they helped set up as a joint venture. From 2000 Carrick began making wine under its own label, initially at Gibbston Valley Wines, then from their own winery at Bannockburn. They took in equity partners when the winery and restaurant/tasting room were built, which was an important step in development of the Carrick brand. As was the transition through to organic production

Carrick Vineyard

from 2008 and three years later, full organic certification. “It changed the way we did things and the way we viewed our production practices.” As well as a clear focus on Pinot Noir, Carrick was one of the foremost Chardonnay producers in the region. The range was added to and refined over time, with three Rieslings, a Pinot Gris, and a Sauvignon Blanc with barrel fermentation adding texture and complexity. “We always had a clear focus that it was the vineyard that created the wine. The wine styles reflected the vineyard in their structure and longevity.” As well as having a strong market presence across New Zealand, from early on Carrick focussed on establishing export

markets, and Green could see strength in a collaborative marketing approach with other local growers. After he’d spent three years in the chair of the Central Otago Winegrowers Association, he became chairman of Central Otago Pinot Noir Limited (COPNL), the association’s marketing arm. The joint marketing approach is perhaps unique to Central Otago, and it established the region as one of two or three serious Pinot Noir regions outside of Burgundy. “I don’t think that, without the collaborative approach between wineries at the time – they would have been as successful as they are now,” said Robertson-Green. “It put Central Otago ahead of their own brand.”

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In 2016 the Greens were approached by Chinese-New Zealander, Elizabeth Zhong, of Kennedy Point Vineyards on Waiheke with an offer to buy Carrick. The timing was good as the equity partners had retired and they were starting to think about succession planning. “At some stage you realise you can’t keep working in the same job forever.” Green remained CEO at Carrick until his move to Nelson earlier this year. He remains a director of Felton Road Wines, chairman of the water infrastructure company for McArthur Ridges Wine Estates, and trustee of the Central Otago Pinot Noir Charitable Trust. jean.grierson@nzsouth.co.nz


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Agenda Events

Pinot Palooza is back The chance to taste an array of Pinot Noirs from Australasia is returning to New Zealand in September. THE 2018 Pinot Palooza tour kicked off in May with a sellout event in Tokyo, Japan. It was the beginning of a hectic year for the organisers, given Pinot Palooza will tour a total of 11 cities in five countries. The New Zealand Tour kicks off in September returning to Auckland, Christchurch and Wellington. Brought alive by REVEL, formerly known as Bottle Shop Concepts, Pinot Palooza, is now in its seventh year, with just the one variety featuring – Pinot Noir. In 2018 more than 100 Pinots will be available for tasting, including wines from some of New Zealand’s most famous producers including; 2017 People’s Choice finalists Mt Difficulty, Charteris, Rippon,

Tongue in Groove, Craggy Range, Te Whare Ra, Carrick, Maude and many more. REVEL Director Dan Sims says; “Each year this event just keeps getting bigger. The response in Japan was incredible. We can’t wait to share the Pinot love across Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and then Hong Kong for the first time this year.” Each ticket includes a take home Plumm red wine glass (valued at $35) and unlimited wine tastings. Tickets for all cities are now on sale.

Pinot Palooza Saturday 8 September Shed 10, Auckland

Sunday 9 September The Foundry, Christchurch

Saturday 15 September Mac’s Function Centre, Wellington pinotpalooza.com.au

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Agenda Past Events

ASIA

PURE DISCOVERY – CHINA In May we held our Pure Discovery roadshow in Guangzhou, Beijing, and Shanghai. Each event encompassed New Zealand as a whole and included food, tourism and master classes to highlight what makes us unique. The events were yet another success with over 420 wines shown and 400 plus attendees in each city.

VINEXPO HONG KONG Vinexpo Hong Kong was held from 29 to 31 May 2018. The ever popular three-day show featured over 100 Wines at our New Zealand Pavilion and was attended by over 17,000 plus, media, distributors, importers and sommeliers from all over the globe 68   // 

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FLAVOURS OF NEW ZEALAND CANADA Flavours of New Zealand were held in Vancouver, Montreal and Toronto in May this year. These annual trade and consumer tastings were attended by over 1500 guests, all after a taste of New Zealand wine.

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Agenda Events

When NZ wine comes to Austin, Texas JESSICA DUPUY

What do you do when you want to introduce some influential American wine professionals to New Zealand wine, but can’t physically get them to the island country? You bring the country to them. IN EARLY June, New Zealand Winegrowers hosted a wine forum in Austin, Texas for a core group of industry buyers and influencers from across the United States. The two-day event offered a snapshot of some of New Zealand’s key topics in the wine industry and gave guests an authentic taste for the heart and soul of the country—in more ways than one. As a festive icebreaker, attendees were welcomed at a private residence in the scenic Hill Country, just west of Austin, for a New Zealand-inspired barbecue cooked up by Kiwi-native Chef Matt Lambert of New York’s Michelin-star rated The Musket Room, who spent two days preparing the great feast. The meal included a wide selection of still table wines comprised of New Zealand’s top regions and grape varieties and accompanying the evening was a selection of sparkling and dessert wines to commemorate the evening. On the following day, participants met at the urban-chic South Congress Hotel for a more intensive introduction to New Zealand Wine. Among the presenters included winemakers Warren Gibson of Trinity Hill Winery, Clive Jones of Nautilus Estate, and Rudi Bauer of Quartz Reef along with New Zealand wine experts Ryan Woodhouse of K&L Fine Wine Merchants and Master Sommelier Laura Williamson. As a general overview, the seminarfocused event gave attendees foundational statistics about New Zealand wine, but also dove deeper into lesser-known areas as well. “We are so often presented with widelydistributed brands from New Zealand, but rarely the stories or perspectives of the peo-

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ple who make it,” said Peter Plaehn, beverage director for nineTwentyfive restaurant near Minneapolis, Minnesota. “Hearing about the wines, the regions, and the wine growing successes and challenges from the winemakers themselves was a tremendous experience.” Throughout the day, guests tasted their way through the diversity of the country’s top grape varieties. Among the many points presented, one stuck out as a clear point of distinction, the overall purity of wines. “These wines are fresh and verveoriented,” said Ryan Woodhouse. “They have this grace and elegance in a range of grape varieties. It’s fascinating to see

“It’s fascinating to see how these styles can vary in the different regions.”


“My hope is that smaller producers will get a seat at the table as several new importers work to bring them into the US.”

how these styles can vary in the different regions.” While many American wine professionals are familiar with this vibrancy, particularly in Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, many in attendance were impressed with the strength of varieties such as Chardonnay and Syrah. “I’m a sucker for Gimblett

Gravels Syrah,” said Christy Frank of Copake Wines in New York’s Hudson Valley. “The best have an elegance and savory character that’s almost old world, but with the vibrant purity that’s clearly a New Zealand hallmark. But I was really impressed with the bracing purity of the fruit from the Chardonnays.”

Gregory Schwab of Bern’s Steakhouse in Tampa, already a proponent of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, lamented the limited availability of some of the country’s other star varieties. “Syrah and Bordeaux Blends from Hawke’s Bay have been well received by guests when I can get ahold of them,” said Schwab. “The key will be in getting more support from importers to help build momentum in a highly competitive, yet lucrative sales category. The trick is leveraging New Zealand’s well-established value wine reputation in order to get consumers to try the next step up. My dream of dreams however, is to lead the charge for North

Island Syrah.” At the end of the intensive crash course in wine, attendees savored a final farewell fourcourse meal from Chef Lambert complete with fresh oysters, New Zealand lamb, classic berry pavlova, and a broad selection of red and white wines including a handful of older vintages. “My hope is that smaller producers will get a seat at the table as several new importers work to bring them into the U.S,” said Plaehn. “I look forward to it because it means a more dynamic crosssection of wines from which to choose. I get the impression that the best of New Zealand is yet to be discovered by American consumers.”

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Agenda Events

Inaugural Organic Wine Week Six restaurants will combine with Organic Winegrowers New Zealand for the first ever Organic Wine Week.

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FROM SEPTEMBER 17 to 23, the premium quality of New Zealand’s organic wines will be showcased in a range of events both here at home and in London and Europe. The aim is simple, according to OWNZ; to showcase the impressive number and caliber of New Zealand organic wine producers and to educate consumers on why choosing organic wine is great for both them and our landscape. Restaurants who will focus on organic wine and food during the week are; The Grove (Auckland), Shepherd (Wellington), Bristronomy (Hawke’s Bay), Arbour (Blenheim), Gatherings at Black Estate (Canterbury), and Sherwood (Queenstown). There will also be public organic wine tastings at

Commonsense Organics in Wellington and Glengarry in Auckland during the week. But as mentioned, not all the events are focusing on New Zealand consumers. In London a master class with organic winemakers will be held at NZW headquarters, Melanie Brown will open up the New Zealand Cellar in Brixton for a consumer tasting, key London restaurants will use their wine lists to focus on organic New Zealand wines, while there will also be an organic showcase at NZW tasting events in Warsaw and Hamburg. The 180 members and 65 wineries producing certified organic wine include some of the best-known boutique and larger scale operations in New Zealand. organicwinenz.com


The good,

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the bad & the ugly.


Agenda Events/Bragato

THINK SMART, LOOK AHEAD The New Zealand wine industry national conference for 2018 is shaping up to be as insightful and intriguing as ever. Tessa Nicholson provides a brief overview. IF YOU aren’t growing and evolving, you’re standing still, and the rest of the world is surging ahead. That’s a quote I recently read and it perfectly fits the theme of this year’s Bragato conference. The New Zealand wine industry has made great leaps forward in the past 20 years, but more is required to stay on top of our game. Hence the

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theme of this year’s event that will see speakers such as Dr Alison Stewart, CEO of the Foundation for Arable Research, Niwa’s Petra Pearce, an expert on climate change in New Zealand and Alec Lee from Ava Winery in San Francisco which produces wine and spirits without grapes or fermentation, take to the stage. Alongside these international experts,

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

a number of renowned industry members will give their take on thinking smart and looking ahead. Issues to be covered during the two-day event include the evolution of vineyards and winemaking, technological innovations, a simulation of a brown marmorated stink bug incursion and the issues surrounding breaking into new markets. Guest speaker this year is Michelle Dickinson, founder and director of Nano Girl. With a background in fracture mechanics Michelle is formally trained in breaking engineering components, but is passionate about designing technologies for a sustainable future. The Bayer Young Viticul-

turists of the Year finalists will deliver their speeches to the conference, with the winner being announced at the Bragato dinner on the Thursday night. Which in itself will be a night to remember. With young vits taking on their vintage counterparts in a live debate, plenty of laughs are assured. While there are no Bragato Wine Awards this year, prepare for a New Release tasting on the Wednesday night. All in all, plenty for everyone. Think smart, Look ahead and register now.

Bragato

29-30 August Westpac Stadium, Wellington bragato.org.nz


BRAGATO SCHEDULE 2018 DAY 1 – WEDNESDAY 29 AUG 2018 PLENARY 1: Global Technology Drivers and Disruptors Food For Thought – Dr. Alison Stewart New Zealand Winegrowers Research Centre Our Research Future – Mark Gilbert

PLENARY 2: Vineyards, The Next Evolution? – MJ Loza Future Ready Vineyard Design – Dr David Jordan Efficient & Inefficient Roguing to Manage Leafroll Virus – Dr. Vaughn Bell Ensuring Vineyard Biosecurity - Best Practice – Dr. Edwin Massey

Replanting - The Battle Of The Bulge and How to Win It! – Geoff Thorpe SWNZ Continuous Improvement in the Vineyard – Joanne Brady

PLENARY 3: Winemaking, The Next Evolution? – Matias Kinzurik Wine Maturation Redefined – Jonathan Boswell Wine, The Mona Lisa, and Food on Mars – Alec Lee Vineyard Fermentation and Site Expression in North Canterbury Pinot Noir – Mike Saunders Slido / Panel discussion – Matias Kinzurik New Zealand Winegrowers Annual Members Meeting – John Clarke

CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS 1-4: 1: Powdery Mildew Control is Easy! – Will Kerner; Trevor Lupton; Andrew Blakeman

2: Your Wine on the World Stage - Promoting Your Wine Overseas – Global Events Team 3: What’s Trending 1 – Mike Trought 4: Synthetic Wine and Whiskey Tasting – Matias Kinzurik; Josh Decologne

CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS 5-8: 5: What’s Trending 2 – Mike Trought 6: Technology Innovations for the Wine Industry – Tracy Benge; Shane Dooley; Mark Eltom

7: The Dirt on Vineyard Posts - Growers Experiences of the Alternatives to CCA Posts – Justine Tate; Max Gifford;

DAY 2 – THURSDAY 30 AUG 2018 PLENARY 5: Nano Girl - Winemaking – Matias Kinzurik; Michelle Dickinson

PLENARY 6: Climate Change and Biosecurity – Tracy Benge Working with Climate Change - Adaption Techniques – Mark Krstic

How Could Climate Change Affect our Grape Growing Regions in NZ? – Petra Pearce A Stink Over Wellington Wine Country - A BMSB Response Simulation – Dr. Edwin Massey; Chris Rodwell; Nicky Fitzgibbon; Phil Sherring; Fiona Roberts

CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS 10-14: 10: Getting More Out of Your Business – Justine Tate; Alistair King; Greg Dryden; Peter Felstead

11: Climate Change - Adaptation Techniques for the Wine Industry – Tracy Benge; Paul Petrie; Dr Andrew Lorrey 12: Optimizing Irrigation in New Zealand Vineyards, Making More From Less – Philip Gregan; Dr. Mark Krasnow 13: Let’s Get Social – Chris Yorke; Amber Silvester 14: Sampling - What Does It All Mean? – Alan Johnson; Rebecca Allen

CONCURRENT WORKSHOPS 15-19: 15: How to Attract the Best Employees – Why Millennials Are Taking Over – Nicky Grandorge 17: New Markets - India. Potentials and Pitfalls – Chris Yorke; Gurjit Barry

18: Made by Millenials for Millenials - Tasting – Francis Hutt; Matt Bocock, WBC; Frances Blakeley

19: Encouraging Resilience in the Wine Industry - What Have We Learned From Kaikoura 2016 – Ed Massey; Susan Keenan; Tony Robb; Nick Craddock Henry; Myles Noble

Bruce Forlong; Marcus Wickham

PLENARY 7:

8: How Social Responsibility Leads to Change –

Wine, The Industry of Choice! – John Clarke Making Diversity Work For Your Business – Sara Tucker Women in Wine – Kathrine Jacobs; Nicky Grandorge The Millennial’s Perspective – Mike Winter Wine, The Industry of Choice! – Panel Discussion

Pete and Alanna Chapman

9: The Organic Vintage - Expert Commentary on Organic vs Conventional Blocks This Vintage – Jonathan Hamlet; Mark Naismith; Callum Linklater; Stu Dudley

PLENARY 4: Young Viticulturist of the Year Speeches – Nicky Grandorge

All the Slido questions from the past two days answered by the panel NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   75


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Young Vit

Finalists decided

The Bayer Young Viticulturist of the year finalists from 2017.

For the past few months AUCKLAND/NORTHERN Jake Dromgool, The Landing in Kerikeri young viticulturists DROMGOOL MAKES throughout the country history as the very first Northlander to compete in have been slogging it the prestigious final. out to gain the chance to “My career ambition is to see the Bay of Islands compete in the Bayer Young recognised as being a destination for fine wines, Viticulturist of the Year fuel the growth of the industry within my region, finals. Being held for the and to help take wine from very first time in Wellington the North to the world. I believe that despite the Wine Country, prior to obvious difficulties of viticulture in the North, we the Bragato conference, have something to offer the market that no other region the six finalists have a few can quite match” says Dromgool. weeks to hone their skills  As well as working at before competing for the The Landing, Dromgool has planted his own vineprestigious title. The six yard and recently launched his own wine brand called finalists follow... 144 Islands. 78   // 

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NORTH CANTERBURY Zoe Marychurch, Bell Hill

WAIRARAPA

Scott Lanceley, Te Kairanga MARYCHURCH SAYS she is thrilled to represent the region, having been born there, but having also worked in other wine regions. She loves the people and hopes this draws attention to the great wines of North Canterbury. 

LANCELEY HAS been Runner Up the last few years, or in his own words “always the bridesmaid” so was thrilled to finally take out the title after studying hard in the build up. Lanceley actually competed in the National Final in 2015, when Mark Langlands who won the regional competition that year, was overseas and unable to compete.

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HAWKE’S BAY

Jonathan Hunt, Delegats, Crownthorpe Vineyard THIS IS the third year Hunt has competed and he is thrilled to have won the title and to be going on to represent Hawke’s Bay in the National Final. There were seven contestants in total including Hunt’s fiancée Sarah Luke from Thornhill Consulting. At 29, this is the last year Hunt was able to compete alongside his fiancée. There was a bit of friendly rivalry, but ultimately Luke was very proud to see her husband-to-be pick up the trophy.  

YOUNG WINEMAKER SOUTH ISLAND EIGHT CONTESTANTS took part in the Tonnellerie de Mercurey South Island Young Winemaker of the Year in July, with two Marlborough contestants moving on to the finals. First in the South Island regionals was Greg Lane of Foley Family Wines, (Marlborough). Second went to Kelly Stuart from Cloudy Bay Wines (Marlborough) and third was Ben Tombs from Peregrine Wines (Central Otago). At the time of going to print, the Tonnellerie de Mercurey North Island Finals had not been held. We will have more details in the next issue of NZ Winegrower.

Tonnellerie de Mercurey Young Winemaker of the Year 20 August

Villa Maria Winery, Auckland. Dinner at Habourside wine-marlborough.co.nz/events/marlborough-youngwinemaker-of-the-year/

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CENTRAL OTAGO Annabel Bulk, Felton Road

ANNABEL IS no stranger to the Central Otago competition, or the finals, given she won the regional title last year and came second in the finals. She was only the fourth female to make it to the Finals in 12 years. “I put more pressure on myself this year as I was determined to defend the title and go through to the nationals again” says Bulk. Her study and preparation obviously paid off.

Charta Packaging the wine packaging experts Custom, quality wine packaging has become an essential part of marketing wine & Charta Packaging can help make your wine packaging stand out. We offer a full range of wine packaging solutions which include: • High quality multi colour gloss print • Lithographic / photo quality print • Standup & laydown packs for 1, 2, 3, 6 & 12 bottles • Cellar door / presentation packs • Stock dividers • Stock postal packs (heavy duty for added protection) • Specialty folded cases and more We will work with you from concept to completion, so contact us today to discuss how we can elevate your wine packaging to the next level.

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MARLBOROUGH Ben Richards, Indevin

THIS WILL be the second consecutive year Richards has competed in the National Final, however he was representing Hawke’s Bay in 2017 as he was working at Indevin’s vineyards there and finishing his degree at EIT. At the start of this year he was promoted to Viticultural Technician for Indevin and moved to Marlborough, so is delighted to represent his new region in this year’s National Final.

The National Final will be held at Palliser Estate on 27th August and the winner will be announced at the Bragato dinner on August 30 in Wellington. The Bayer Young Viticulturist of the Year receives a prize package including a Hyundai Kona for a year, $5000 AGMARDT Travel Grant, $2000 cash, Bahco golden secateurs, glassware and a leadership week where the winner travels around New Zealand to meet influential people from the within the wine industry as well as leaders from other industries.

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Regions Marlborough

A New Zealand millennial wine film TESSA NICHOLSON

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A small wine sub-region of Marlborough is about to be immortalised on film in a movie called Hang Time. THE SLEEPERS Vineyard in Kekerengu is the backdrop for the movie written and directed by Casey Zilbert. Owned by her parents Lynne and Chris Wilson, Sleepers Vineyard is one of only three in the small sub region south of Blenheim. For Zilbert herself, it has been the chance for her to merge her two great loves – film and wine - together, in an effort to bring wine into the world of millennials. Describing it as a millennial wine comedy, the film follows a jilted groom, who finds out a week before the big day that his fiancé no longer wants to get married. “So he and his best two mates go down to the vineyard where the wedding was going to be held, with all the wine, and shenanigans ensue.” With financial backing from Astrolabe Wines, (who the Wilson’s sell most of their fruit to) Hang Time was filmed early in 2017. Which in itself was an issue for all concerned, given it was just two months since the Kaikoura earthquake devastated the area. “There were so many times this film should not have happened,” Zilbert says. “Firstly the

Filming in the Sleepers Vineyard in Kekerenungu.

November 2016 earthquakes and a severe aftershock and then they got hit by a storm. I went down after the earthquake to help, but also to check if they were still okay for me to be doing this. It was heartwarming because everyone came forward. They all said, actually we need this now more than ever. We want this to be something we can look forward to.” Out of disaster comes triumph and in this case it proved so Zilbert explains. Because SH1

was a mess there was no tourism in the region and the group were able to film in places that normally would have been out of reach at that time of the year. “So it was like how can we show every possible corner of what is amazing about Kekerengu so that when the road is open we can take the film out there and say; ‘hey guys everybody is still there, they are looking forward to seeing you.”’ As for the wine angle, Zilbert has more than a little interest

in promoting our fifth largest export. Along with a degree in film-making, she also has a post grad degree in wine science. Although she has never used that to make wine, her background has helped her parents diversify their vineyard plantings. Along with Sauvignon Blanc, Sleepers Vineyard also grows Albarino and Tempranillo. The latter a direct result of a request to Zilbert from her father. “I had just got a job at Short-

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From left: Actors Gemma Knight, Steve Barr, Hayden J. Weal, Nick Davies.

land Street working as a script coordinator, so I suddenly was torn between two industries. My Dad, to keep me sane more than anything else, asked me to go and research what the next red variety for this region was going to be. So I went out, dug into the books and did the research and said Tempranillo is the right fit for us.” She credits her mother Lynne with the red variety becoming such a success for the family. “She pulled out some Savvie and planted the Tempranillo but it didn’t work very well. So she planted it in a different area. And the wine coming out of it now is amazing. “It has taken us a few years to understand and get the best out of the vines in that particular location. But it is getting to the point that everybody who drinks it is blown away.” She is hoping the same will be said by those who view the film when it is released next

year, especially millennials. “One of the things that came up a lot in my research is the wine industry is facing a similar struggle as the film industry, in that they don’t know how to reach the millennial audience. They buy differently, they are a little bit unpredictable and so I hope this film is going to start a conversation between young New Zealanders and show that the wine industry is not stuffy. Instead wine in itself is fun and

artistic. I want to try and take away that fuddy duddy image that wine is something that your Mum and Dad are into and get people excited about wine in the way I am excited about wine. It is such an adventure, all the way through from the vine to the bottle and into the glass.” And yes she is hoping to have an impact in the way Sideways did a few years ago. “I started saying it as a joke early on in the piece. But now I

would love for Hang Time to do for Albariño and Tempranillo what Sideways did for Pinot Noir. Especially with younger people.” Hang Time will have its theatrical premiere next year at a red carpet event in Blenheim, with Zilbert planning to take the movie on the road, accompanied by wines for a tasting, to towns and cities throughout New Zealand. tessa.nicholson@me.com

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Agenda Events

Same show, new owners New Zealand’s largest region will celebrate its unique wines in October, at the 8th Marlborough Wine Show. WINE MARLBOROUGH has taken over the reins of this annual event, which was established back in 2011 by Belinda Jackson and Margaret Cresswell of Wine Competition Ltd. While the owners may be new, the event will continue to focus solely on the wines emanating from Marlborough. Jackson and Cresswell introduced a number of firsts during their tenure. Sub regional classes were

established, all wines are tasted in varietal specific glassware and the un-used bottles entered are auctioned with funds going into a trust for industry grants. Wine Marlborough has played a supportive role throughout the history of the event and in November last year announced they would be taking over the reins. With international judges playing a role, the show also includes a range of local winemakers, educators and wine writers. Chief of judges this year is Jack

Glover, from Accolade Wines. Entries open on August 27, closing on September 21. Judging will take place in Blenheim between October 15 and 17, with the auction taking place on the 17th. The trophies will be presented on October 26. Along with the trophies a Lifetime Achievement Award will be presented to someone within the Marlborough wine community who is deemed to have made a lasting impact on the industry.

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Stronger Vines. B

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Regions Hawke’s Bay

The on, off again walking track

OLIVER STYLES

NEARLY ONE year on from a rocky start, the Craggy Range Te Mata walking track saga appears to be on the way to completion after the winery and local iwi agreed to purchase land adjoining the initial, controversial trail and to work towards putting a replacement in its place. The 2.4km walking track was constructed late last year on the eastern face of Te Mata Peak, a local landmark. Local opposition to the track, which starts close to the Craggy Range cellar door and climbs to the Te Mata ridgeline, began soon after its

construction, with some members of the community questioning the consent process and protests outside the winery. Ngahiwi Tomoana, chairman of local iwi, Ngati Kahungunu, called the track “an eyesore”. Conversely, the track also garnered sizeable local support, with three local residents (one a previous Hawke’s Bay Winegrowers board member and local viticulturist Xan Harding) setting up the Te Mata Peak Peoples’ Track Society. Supporters of the track claimed to have gathered over 20,000 signatures

from locals wanting it to stay in place. However, the project was put on hold and the track subsequently closed. It was slated for removal. Then, in a move that promised to reduce tensions between the two factions, Ngati Kahungunu and Craggy Range announced in May that they would jointly purchase an additional 28ha of adjacent land and remodel the track. “We never intended to alienate or divide any part of our community by developing the public track,” Craggy

Range CEO Mike Wilding told NZ Winegrower. “During the resource consenting process we were assured that Hastings District Council’s Iwi Liaision would engage with the appropriate members of Mana Whenua as part of the consenting process. Unfortunately this process fell down somewhere. The disappointing thing is we have a good relationship with Ngati Kahungunu and had we been advised by Hastings District Council that they did not support the project, we would never

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have proceeded.” Wilding said he understood that there would be objections to not removing the track for the moment, but that he was unwilling to “take a direction that left the land or the community in a worse position”. While the consultation for the new track is likely to take stakeholders and local interested parties well into the latter half of the year, the Environmental Defence Society, a non-profit organisation, has lodged proceedings against Hastings District Council in the High Court in Napier. The proceedings, filed in July, call for a judicial review of the initial consent process by the council, and ask for a court order to remove the track. It is not clear what impact this will have on the new joint project. Despite admitting that “we have been terribly disappointed in the whole affair”, Wilding was upbeat about the new venture. “The community now have

PHOTO RICHARD BRIMER

an option for an enhanced track that also encompasses the ridgeline of Te Mata, with the flexibility to traverse away from culturally sensitive areas,” he said. “Ngati Kahungunu are also keen to explore the mass replanting of native shrubs around the track and on the surround-

ing land, which could enhance the landscape and improve biodiversity. We are extremely pleased with this outcome, as we feel that through this process, and our partnership with Ngati Kahunungu, the whole community is now getting a fantastic outcome.”

When asked about the possible impact the controversy has had on the Craggy brand, Wilding said that “while people could argue whether it has been good or bad…the truth is the intention was to gift a track to the community.” oliverstyles@hotmail.com

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Regions Wellington Wine Country

Flying winemaker takes on Gladstone JOELLE THOMSON

One of this country’s smallest wineries has been bought by a large Asian investment company and an Australian flying winemaker with the intention of growing the brand significantly in the international market. OWNER, FOUNDER and chief winemaker Christine Kernohan will remain as general managerchief winemaker, as will key staff, not only throughout the transition but also moving forward. “I am pleased that throughout negotiations we have reached this outcome, which will help our brand to grow strongly moving forward,” says Kernohan. “Having expanded our vineyards from an annual production of 1,000 cases to around 10,000 cases in the past 20 years, we are pleased that Odyssey and The Flying Winemaker Eddie

The cafe and offices at Gladstone Vineyard

McDougall see the huge potential of Gladstone Vineyard wines on the world stage,” she says. There is an opportunity for significant growth in production under the new ownership, which was subject to New Zealand Overseas Investment Office approval. The Flying Winemaker is McDougall’s company and is based in Australia. His company ethos has always been to highlight wine in new ways to consumers, hence his description of guerrilla wine marketing. McDougall describes the acquisition of Gladstone Vine-

yard as having been a long and detailed process and says he is looking forward to building Gladstone Vineyard further. “It took a long time to select the right vineyard and region in New Zealand that I felt was going to offer wine drinkers the next big thing. It was important to me that we become custodians of an existing vineyard that showed great promise if it could utilise our winemaking expertise and branded ecosystem. I recognise world-class winemaking businesses are not built in a day and having the chance to take over Gladstone Vineyard

with more than 30 years on the books makes this a very special opportunity. My team and I are incredibly excited to become the new custodians of the vineyard as we continue to build on the foundations laid by the Kernohan family and their team.” McDougall will work alongside Kernohan, her existing team and the Odyssey Capital Group, which is described as an independent alternative asset manager in the Asia-Pacific region. The Gladstone Vineyard purchase adds to the group’s portfolio companies. mailme@joellethomson.com

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News Robotic Judging

Can machines predict wine quality? LEE SUCKLING

AS FAR back as the 1980s, the idea that the quality of a wine or a vintage could be predicted without drinking it has been kiboshed – Robert M. Parker Jr., one of the most awarded wine critics in the US, called it “ludicrous and absurd” when he was asked about its emergence back in 1990. Princeton University economist Orley Ashenfelter developed a model that could predict how Bordeaux vintages would

taste based on the temperature and rainfall that occurred during the year of harvest. He did this reasonably well: his mathematics was able to correctly explain how Bordeaux was priced through its age (at an accuracy rate of 80 per cent of price variation), based on average growing season (AprilSeptember) temperatures, rainfall for the year prior between October and April, and average temperatures during September,

the harvest month. Although this was prior to the widespread effects of climate change, mind you. All industries are using 21st Century technologies to forecast their business activities these days. How effective are today’s algorithms in wine quality? Is there any chance computer learning or wine-tasting androids will replace real-life wine judges? The simple answer is this: mathematical equations

Statistical analyses for judging wine without actually tasting it remain unpopular in the wine industry.

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All industries are using 21st Century technologies to forecast their business activities these days. are unreliable, and robot wine tasters are unlikely in our near future – quality judging will always be left up to mankind. However, that doesn’t mean we can stop paying attention to how science and technology will influence wine quality judging in the future. Machine learning techniques – which are essentially a subset of artificial intelligence – are used to support the wine industry. In a study presented in December 2017 at the International Conference in Smart Computing and Communications, machine-driven ways of judging wine quality were assessed and evaluated. The used variables such as fixed acidity, volatile acidity, citric acid, residual sugar, chlorides, free sulphur dioxide, total sulphur dioxide, density, pH, sulphates, alcohol, and quality rating, to machine-determine what a wine will taste like without actually sampling it. The

result was mixed – when white wine was compared to real-life sommelier judging, the mathematical equation showed that a wine’s quality was only 28.02 per cent dependent on all variables as a whole. What is noted in the study, however, is that more research is required to figure out which variables are not important, and which are. Yet there’s another key issue with judging wine quality without actually tasting it. Cost. It is not an economically viable system because the science is all quite new and, to ensure any machine learning is actually doing its job, human quality control will always be required. That means real people need to taste real wine – making it a hard argument for investment in machine learning techniques. We also have another difficult hurdle to get over in

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Some people in the wine industry may scoff at this notion, and, indeed, the idea that machine learning has a place in something as subjective as wine at all.

machine learning quality. It’s the same found in other subjective areas like art: the price of wine can directly correlate to its perceived quality. You can take all the other chemical variables out and focus just on RRP, and that would create a somewhat reliable algorithm on how to qualify wine without tasting it. Yet machine learning in wine has more of a future ahead of it, as consumer recommendations become more personalised based on purchase behaviour. An example of how this could be applied to wine is easily understood by the Netflix model. The

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streaming service provider asks you to rate the movies and TV shows you watch and, based on an algorithm fed by others users’ ratings, predicts what movies and TV shows you might enjoy next. The more data you give Netflix (i.e. the more content you consume and rate), the more its machine learning understands your individual tastes. For wine, retailers could do the same: as you rate every time you buy a bottle, and use that data with hundreds, thousands, even millions of other people’s data to tell you what you’ll think of another

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

bottle of wine. Naturally, that same technology will then be harnessed to try and sell that bottle to you. Some people in the wine industry may scoff at this notion, and, indeed, the idea that machine learning has a place in something as subjective as wine at all. However, it’s important to stay abreast of what’s happening in science

and technology so we don’t get left behind. A lot of people are put off understanding statistical analyses and machine learning because of the mathematics involved, but all in the industry can benefit from having even a basic understanding of what machines may bring us in the future. As they say, better the devil you know. lee.suckling@gmail.com


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Regions Nelson

An investment in Nelson wine NEIL HODGSON

Every winery in the Nelson region was family owned and operated until the Bolitho family sold their Waimea Estates to Booster Tahi in late 2017. BOOSTER IS a New Zealand investment company with about $2.7bn of New Zealander’s funds under its management, including KiwiSaver funds. They set up Booster Tahi as a stand-alone company to invest in New Zealand horticulture businesses as a way of adding value to the productive sector and investing in the future of New Zealand.  Waimea Estates General

Manager Blair Gibbs says Waimea Estates and the Awatere River Wines were the first move into horticultural products for Booster so they set up a standalone company that has a clear focus rather than just being part of an investment portfolio. “This is about adding value to New Zealand owned businesses and keeping them in New Zealand ownership. Any earnings stay in

Waimea Estates GM Blair Gibbs (right) and head winemaker Hamish Kempthorne.

New Zealand rather than being paid to overseas based parent companies.” Head winemaker Hamish Kempthorne is excited about the future offered by Booster. “It is great for the wine industry, it really is a watershed moment to have long-term players in the

market. “Many family owned wineries are looking to the future and deciding whether they hang on to their business, pass it on to the next generation or sell it, so to have a New Zealand investment company back Nelson as a wine region really is quite sig-

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nificant. They found value and potential in the wine industry in here.” Gibbs says the Booster Tahi business also includes investment in an avocado orchard and they are looking at kiwifruit, apples and hops, as well as adding further vineyard investments to the portfolio. “It will allow us to fully integrate domestic and export market access for all the industries they have an involvement in and will not only have positive outcomes in terms of retaining ownership in New Zealand but also more cohesion in marketing New Zealand products overseas as well as making the most of growth potential and the better use of equipment that is capital intensive. “The thing with all wineries is you end up with an incredibly expensive asset you need to get a return on. So during vintage dejuicing fruit and making wine for others is good for cashflow, it means we have a facility that does more than just one thing. The Bolitho family were already doing this so it added to the attraction of the business from

an investment point-of-view.” According to Kempthorne for the new ownership the key values are still; “to be authentic, for the wines to have a sense of place and to produce high quality grapes that let us make very good wines. “Booster want to enhance the offering from both Waimea and Awatere Valley and as owners they are open to us telling them how we are going to achieve it. They’re not behaving like corporate, profit-focussed owners, they are much more interested in long-term sustainability in business terms.” The Waimea Estates operation includes 150 Ha of their own vineyards and a similar size vineyard area in the Awatere. At the Nelson winery, they are looking at expanding tank capacity, to 3.2 million litres a year, while the Awatere facility was expanded to 2.5 million litres last year. A Central Otago winery is also being added to the portfolio as the asset rich New Zealand investment company continues to invest Kiwi’s savings in Kiwi businesses.

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Agenda Events

FIRST LIGHT

WINE & FOOD, GISBORNE

First Light Festival returns Up to 2000 people are expected to descend on Gisborne at Labour weekend for the second

FIRST LIGHT Wine and Food festival. Complimentary buses will carry the guests around the province, allowing them to stop off at one of three venues; Matawhero, TW Wines and the newly re-opened Bridge Estate. “The Gisborne Wine and Food Festival has always been known for a great day out and a wonderful opportunity to experience a taste of Gisborne, and we plan to continue that tradition at the First Light Wine and Food, says event co-founder Paul Tietjen from TW Wine. “The bus tour around the wineries and the gorgeous venues on offer make for a fun afternoon for friends – and we even have a cheese and chocolate tent this year.” The event organisers have also chosen to offer a sober driver ticket this year, for those people who choose to drive rather than take the bus service included in the general admission ticket. The venues want to ensure the safety of the guests and host responsibility is paramount at the event and offering a sober drive admission ticket supports these objectives.

First Light and Wine 21 October Midday – 7.30pm Gisborne firstlightwineandfood.co.nz

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NZW News

No stranger to research TESSA NICHOLSON

MJ Loza’s career in wine may have been at the managerial level, but his new role as CEO of the New Zealand Winegrowers Research Centre (NZWRC) is taking him back to one of his great loves. HAVING TRAINED as a lawyer originally, a large part of his career background has involved primary industry research. For 10 years Loza was at the heart of Deer Industry New Zealand, rising from marketing executive to CEO. During his time there he was hands on involved in research underpinning the industry’s QA programmes and the science supporting deer vel-

vet’s health applications. In 2004 he joined Fonterra Marketing and Innovation as a commercial manager, becoming Director Group Innovation. Again he was heavily involved in innovation opportunities for the company as well as providing support to those ensuing innovation hubs. From deer to Fonterra to wine, as in 2006 Loza and family arrived in Marlborough, where

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“There will be some application research done, but it is also the chance for the industry to fund some more ‘blue-sky’ projects as well.”

he took up the General Manager role at Seresin Estate. His career in wine grew, as he moved onto Mud House Wines as CEO. When the company was bought by Accolade Wines, Loza was named GM New Zealand. From there to the US as the new GM for North America. Now a few years down the track he is back, ensconced in the world of wine, but this time as the CEO of the newly established NZWRC. The centre is receiving up to $12.5m in funding from MBIE over four years and for the first time ever will provide a one-stop centre to produce research related solely to the wine industry. “This centre is great for the industry and having the investment is wonderful,” Loza says, “but the chance to build something that is enduring is what’s really exciting. It is also a challenge because we have to think about a model that will

last beyond the MBIE funding.” The NZWRC which will be based in Blenheim will have two separate strings to it he says. Firstly, industry levy funded research which can focus on more applied immediate issues – think powdery mildew, trunk disease, mealy bugs etc. Then there will the chance to undertake more long-term research projects with the MBIE funding. “There will be some application research done, but it is also the chance for the industry to fund some more ‘blue-sky’ projects as well.” The board of NZWRC has already signed off on three new projects – Pinot Noir, pathogen reservoirs and climate change. “The pathogen reservoirs is a project arising out of NZW’s Vineyard Ecosystems project. We have to understand ground cover strategies in vineyards and potential implications for pathogens.

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Richmond Plains

“The other, climate change is one I am very excited about. We are undertaking modelling in four regions, (Hawke’s Bay, Wellington Wine Country, Marlborough and Central Otago). That will give us a range of scenarios for those regions looking out at horizons of 2040 and 2080. That is stage one. “Then if we find data that comes out as useful, we will repeat it for all regions. The next stage would be to act on those scenarios and determine how changes could affect phenology and then what tools are required to deal with the implications.” Plans are also underway for a Research Winery, which Loza says will change the face of New Zealand’s wine research in the future. “The intention is to build a world-leading facility which not only delivers world-class research – knowing the results will apply to commercial scale – but also showcases the latest

technology and trials and models sustainable winery design, and attracts the world’s top wine research talent.” An international search for the person to lead NZW’s Research and Innovation port-

folio is also currently underway. Loza says they want someone who has an established international presence in terms of wine research. “Our strategy is to build the reputation of the Wine Research

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NZW News

New research programme manager New Zealand Winegrowers’ new research programme manager describes his appointment as coming full circle. He tells Tessa Nicholson why. WHEN WILL Kerner embarked on his diploma in viticulture and oenology at Goldie Estate back in 2011, he assumed he would be there for a year only. Three years later he had undertaken a Masters on the differences between organic and conventional grape growing on the same terroir. Little did he know that the findings of his research would inevitably prime him for leading a research programme for NZW, that focused on just that subject matter. Kerner, who was born in America has intrinsic links to the New Zealand wine industry. His parents bought bare land

in Marlborough back in the mid 1990’s. While he studied philosophy at the University of Colorado, his parents began planting vines. Once a house had been built on the site, the vineyard became a home base, where he became more and more interested in the workings of both the growing of grapes and the making of wine. It was this hands-on-involvement that led him to the Diploma through Auckland University. He did better than he had expected and was asked if he wanted to undertake his Masters. “I was interested in terroir and organics versus conven-

tional,” Kerner says. “We grew both at home and I had seen differences through the two different management systems on essentially the same terroir. I thought it would be great to do some research on it. “Comparing different systems in management is important. If you have the chance to question the status quo – that doesn’t mean challenge it – just question it, it is sensible to do so.” Some of his lines of enquiry from his Masters have been taken further in the seven-year NZW/MBIE Vineyard Ecosystems project, which began in

2015. For Kerner, that is vindication that he was on the right track. “It is cool to see some of my data being looked at, and now I am project managing the Vineyard Ecosystems, so in many ways I have come full circle.” Kerner understands how important it is to get information back to practitioners, so it can be put to work. “It is important to bridge that gap between science and practitioners,” he says. “There is a real need for information that can be utilised and directly add value to grape growers and wineries.” The Vineyard Ecosystems

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Will Kerner will project manage the Vineyard Ecosystems project which aims to increase longevity and profitability. PHOTO TOHU WINES

project is a turnaround in terms of scientific research. “Science is very much about studying mechanisms between A and B and you develop a hypothesis around that and test for it. Right now we have a statistical capacity to look back and study lots and lots of data points across a space and time and let that point to mechanisms we may not have known about previously.” That is made easier he says due to the sharing nature of our wine industry. “I like the intercompany camaraderie that there is here. There is a lot of sharing of information, at Bragato or Grape Days. I would wager that it is this capacity to share, by virtue of our size and how we are set up by NZW that has allowed us to get where we are.”

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   107


Vineyard Powdery

Finger on the pulse of powdery mildew ANNA LAMBOURNE, DAVID MANKTELOW, ANDREW BLAKEMAN

CLARIFYING THE CONFUSING WORLD OF CHEMICAL RATES Part 3 of our focus on powdery mildew discusses chemical rates. Understanding chemical labels and working out what to actually put in the tank can be confusing. Analysis of industry spray diaries shows that whilst many growers are getting it right, there is a significant number who are not. This is resulting in over-dosing and under dosing of chemicals, risking unwanted residues, crop damage, resistance development

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and failure to achieve effective disease control.

KEY MESSAGES If your rate controller is capable of spraying per 100m set your application volumes based on L/100 m of row. This is far simpler than spraying using L/Ha. If spraying using L/Ha, be aware not all vineyard hectares are equal. Your application rate/ha is determined by the canopy in that hectare. You can use the same tank mix of spray on different

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

blocks with different canopy characteristics (row spacing, training system), provided you adjust the spray volume applied to deliver the required chemical dose.

SPRAY APPLICATION VOLUME It is important to understand that the required chemical application rate is a separate decision to the spray volume that you apply that rate in. The purpose of water is to carry chemical to the plant. Most sprayers are able to get

good coverage using volumes that are about a half to a fifth of the point of runoff. Spraying at these lower volumes improves spraying work rates and reduces chemical wastage through drips. Use of adjuvants can also help improve coverage when using low volumes. If you are


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using an organo-silicone super wetter, reduce the water rate to one third to one fifth of the runoff volume. To help you determine an appropriate application volume for your canopy check the New Zealand Winegrowers ‘Spray Mix Mate’ app.

PER HECTARE VS PER 100 M OF ROW LENGTH There are two methods for calculating how much to apply - volume per ha, or, volume per 100m of row length. If you have a controller in your sprayer capable of spraying per 100m, it is recommended you use this method as it is far simpler than spraying per ha. If your controller is not capable of spraying per 100m, ask your sprayer service agent if a software update is available, otherwise you will need to work out your required volumes on a per ha basis. NOT ALL HECTARES ARE CREATED EQUAL If you are calculating appli-

cation rates per hectare you must explain the canopy. Each blocks in the picture above is one hectare. If you applied 4 kg/ha of chemical on each block you would not be giving each vine the same amount of chemical. 4 kg/ha may be perfect for Block B, however that same amount may overdose Block A and under-dose Block C. This is because there are different numbers of vines on the hectare and the size of the vines is different. So the application rate per ha changes based on what your specific hectare looks like - row width, canopy height and canopy density.

DIFFERENT RATES PER /HA, SAME LABEL RATE As the volume of spray required to cover a hectare increases, so too does the total amount of chemical applied per ha. However this does not mean you are using a different label rate. If sulphur at the label rate of 300g/100L was applied

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   109


CASE STUDY:

SPRAYING PER 100M SIMPLIFIES RATES CALCULATIONS AND RESULTS IN A CLEAN SEASON NEW ZEALAND Winegrowers followed 10 vineyards from pre-harvest 2017 to pre-harvest 2018. Case studies received advice and support on chemical decisions and sprayer setup based on the current recommended best practice for powdery mildew control. The following organic block shows that even simple chemistry applied at the right rates and volumes, and, sprayed by skilled operators, can achieve complete powdery mildew control. “Historically we have struggled with powdery

mildew in this block, but this year we are on top.” The key change made this season was the move from spraying per ha to spraying per 100m. “When going into different blocks with different row widths

the only thing we adjust is the booms on the sprayer, we don’t adjust the rates at all. We use the same amount of chemical in the tanks and the same water volume, no matter what the row width. This made

things heaps easier.” The other key to the success of this vineyard is the operators. “I have great observant operators – they don’t just flick the switch, they actually get out and care and give feedback about what they see”. This vineyard went from having ongoing powdery problems, using chemical rates that were calculated on a per hectare basis, but, not adjusted for row width, to having complete powdery mildew control using correct chemical rates, based on spraying per 100m basis.

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The New Zealand Winegrowers “Spray Mix Mate Calculator” and the “GrapeLink Rates Calculator,” help calculate application rates for specific blocks. to the blocks, using a 1000 L tank with 3kg sulphur in it, and after using ‘Spray Mix Mate’ to determine the spray application volume: • Block A - Takes half a 1000 L tank (500 L) to do the job. • Block B - Takes one 1000 L tank (1000 L) to do the job. • Block C - Takes two 1000 L tanks (2000 L) to do the job. Block A would receive 1.5kg /ha, (500 L x 300g/100 L), Block B would receive 3kg/ha (1000 L x 300g/100 L), and Block C would receive 6kg/ha (2000 L x 300g/100 L). The tank mix is the same for all blocks, 300g/100l, however the total amount of sulphur applied over the hectare changed as a result of greater volume applied. It is important to understand the details of the hectare before you can decide if a per ha rate is appropriate.

WORKING OUT THE CORRECT APPLICATION RATE FOR A BLOCK Everyone has their own way of working out application rates. The New Zealand Winegrowers “Spray Mix Mate Calculator” and the ‘GrapeLink Rates Calculator,” help calculate application rates for specific blocks. If you already have a method for calculating rates, check it against one of these calculators. If the answers are more than 10% different it is recommend you seek further advice. Spray Mix Mate and GrapeLink calculators are based on the same set of assumptions. The only difference is how they enter canopy height - ‘Spray Mix Mate’ uses canopy height (m), and GrapeLink uses ‘EL stage’ to automatically estimate canopy height. This means they provide a similar but not identical result. • For more information on powdery mildew control go to nzwine. com.

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Regions Central Otago

Wetjacket Wines pay homage to history JOELLE THOMSON

Whoever coined the phrase that it’s the journey rather than the destination that counts may well have been thinking of a Wetjacket Wine tour. NOT IN Queenstown but in the remote, rugged and damp beauty of Fiordland. This is where the inspiration for the new wine brand’s name came from and, as anyone who has ever travelled to Fiordland can attest, the word wet is apt. The wine brand is based by Bendemeeer Station at Lake Hayes but the real journey is into the eery Wetjacket Arm; one of the first Fiords visited

and named by Captain Cook in the early 1770s. This year, I travelled there as part of a group of chefs, maitre d’s and others in hospitality, including winemaker Pete Bartle. The journey began with an Uber to the airport followed by a plane trip to Queenstown followed by a drive to Te Anau, an overnight stay there, then a helicopter trip to get into Fiord-

land, and the same in reverse to return home after three gobsmackingly serene days cruising in an old metal hulled launch, co-owned by Greg Hay. He released the first Wetjacket wines in 2016 with wines from the 2014 vintage. It’s a Pinot dominant brand with both Pinot Noir and Pinot Gris making up about 60 to 70 per cent of annual production. The balance is a mixture of Char-

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donnay, Riesling and Rosé. The name Wetjacket Arm was first coined by Captain Cook, who arrived in Dusky Sound for the first time in 1770 and then returned again in 1773. He and his men soon learnt about the intense dampness of the narrow Wetjacket Fiord, coining the name. On his travels in the region, Cook also shot a southern blue penguin in the

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Acheron Passage, wrote descriptions of kiwi, tui, kereru (native wood pigeons), kokako, hawks, ducks, gulls, weka, black oystercatchers, petrols, penguins, kakas, cuckoos, shags and albatrosses. All of this is detailed beautifully in historic books on board Hay’s boat. The Wetjacket Wine production is, like its namesake fiord, relatively small compared to its nearby neighbours. Production is capped between 2000 to 3000 cases a year and Hay predicts that this number will not grow significantly, at least not in the foreseeable future. It’s a profitable brand because he has turned the sales model on its head by selling approximately 80 per cent of the wines at the cellar door; an original stone croft built 150 years ago. It is on the main road from Queenstown to Bannockburn so traffic is plentiful. It has pull in lanes, a car parking area and the added attraction of a cheese room built

on site to house Whitestone Cheese from Oamaru. Whitestone Cheese founder, Bob Berry, lives 200 metres up the road. The cellar door is at the bottom of the Bendemeer sheep farming station, which was sold in the 1960s and has now been converted to a residential development of 40 sections, all of which have been sold and will become private residences.

The original Bendemeer shearing sheds are attached to the croft and remain as they were as a piece of history. Part of the agreement in buying the land and buildings was the retention of the shearing sheds. A cheese maturation room for aging the iconic South Island Whitestone Cheeses has been built onto the cellar door. “This cellar door tells the

story about the history of farming in the area, the use of different types of wools and the Whitestone Cheese story, plus we can tell visitors about the early European history in the southern part of New Zealand, which is where the Wetjacket brand comes from,” says Wetjacket Wines general manager Alison Vidoni. mailme@joellethomson.com

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Regions Central Otago

Symbolic sculpture arrives in Central Otago JEAN GRIERSON

A DECADE of exchanges between the winegrowers of Burgundy and Central Otago is symbolised in an intricate wood and stone sculpture doing the rounds of southern wineries. Burgundian winegrower Jean-Michel Jacob has conveyed the story of the of the French Pinot Noir capital and Central Otago through his other passion - sculpture - in acknowledgement of the friendship and close ties between the two regions. Crafted on a barrel head the sculpture was unveiled in Burgundy as part of the 10th anniversary celebrations of the Central Otago Burgundy Exchange last year. It arrived in Wanaka in May where it was unpacked by Jacob’s son, Tim, one of this year’s stagiaires (exchange students) hosted at Rippon. To date almost 80 stagiaires have participated in the exchange programme which is held during vin-

tage, exposing upcoming viticulturists and winemakers from the two regions to different ideas and wine cultures. Exchange co-founder and Rippon winemaker Nick Mills, said the sculpture portrayed the meaningful conversations and sharing of values which are the basis of the exchange. “Stagiaires from Central Otago gain insight from the centuries of attention to specific vineyard sites, how they have been codified and the enormous history and respect for tradition is something that a person from a very young country like New Zealand cannot fully appreciate until being fully immersed amongst it.” The sculpture will move from Rippon to be exhibited at other Central Otago wineries and special regional events over the next three years, before returning to Burgundy.

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From left Tim Jacob and Nick Mills with the artwork that Tim’s father Jean-Michel Jacob sculptured in Burgundy to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Central Otago Burgundy Exchange.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

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OWNZ Update

Organic fruit not always for organic wine There are a number of reasons New Zealand wineries and vineyards are turning to organics, according to an OWNZ report, included in the biannual OANZ Organic Market Report, released late June. THE REPORT confirms that 32 percent of 100 producers surveyed named protecting the environment as their main reason for their move to organics. Protecting human health was the reason given by 31 percent and 23 percent rated producing a higher quality product as their main reason. The latter proved to be financially beneficial in the 2018 season, with a number of organic growers being offered between 10 and 20 percent more than the average prices paid for conventional fruit. “The price premiums being paid are in some cases based on grape quality rather than solely on organic status. This is reflected in the fact that some wineries pay more for organic fruit, but then use it to produce wines which are not certified organic.” And that is an anomaly that is still obvious – there is not a direct correlation between organic fruit and organic wine.

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Data obtained by OANZ suggests that a significant fraction of certified organic grapes in New Zealand are still being made into non-certified-organic wine. There are several reasons for this, which are reported anecdotally by wine industry staff.

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Organic production for some producers is a choice driven by viticultural or winemaking preferences, rather than by a desire to have an organic label on the bottle. Some large wineries have converted large areas of their own vineyards to organic pro-

duction, but some of those grapes may be blended with non-organic grapes for particular wine blends, or may end up in brands which do not yet have organic lines. In some cases where organic conversion has been driven by vineyard and winery staff, marketing teams


NZ ORGANIC WINEGROWERS BROKEN DOWN THE OWNZ report points out the significant regional variations in the uptake of organic winegrowing across New Zealand. Marlborough the country’s largest region has only 3.8 percent of its vineyard land under organic certification – a statistic influenced by large new non-organic plantings. However smaller regions with a greater focus on artisanal production fare much better. Central Otago – 16.7 percent organic Nelson – 8.9 percent organic North Canterbury 7.9 percent Wellington Wine Country – 7.5 percent.

have not yet become motivated to market the wine as organic. This sometimes reflects a gap in philosophies between viticulture/winemaking teams and corporate marketing departments. Some organic wineries do not proclaim their organic status in certain markets. For

example, under US organic winemaking rules, most New Zealand organic wines can only be labelled “made with organic grapes” rather than labelled as “organic wine”. Some organic grape producers sell their grapes to nonorganic wineries which pay a premium for the high quality of

the fruit; however these buyer wineries may not themselves hold organic certification. Wineries who are not using organic grapes for organic wine, may like to take a look at the stats mentioned in the report. While less than five percent of New Zealand vineyards are certified organic, the wines made from those vineyards are punching well above their weight. In total 4.6 percent New Zealand’s vineyard land is now certified organic, and 10 percent of all wineries hold organic certification. Compare those figures with recently curated lists of the country’s top wines, where close to 30 percent are organic. (The list includes Air NZ’s Fine Wines list, last year’s Air NZ Wine Awards and a recent selection in Europe by MW’s and MS’s of the country’s top wines). In terms of the future for organic winegrowing, the report states growers need more sup-

port. “The tenuous nature of the contract grape growing economy may pose a barrier to organic conversions by growers who do not produce their own wines. The majority of organic wine grape production in New Zealand is currently undertaken by wineries, rather than growers selling their grapes on the open market. It may be perceived as riskier for an independent grape grower to convert to organic production without having an assured buyer and guaranteed price waiting at the end of the three-year organic conversion process.” Could wineries incentivise and support their contract growers to convert to organic production?, the report asks. Particularly as the demand for organic fruit has risen in recent years with 2018 experiencing a shortage in terms of supply versus demand. tessa.nicholson@me.com

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   117


Industry News

New CEO for Wine-Searcher IT’S ALL change at the top, as Wine-Searcher welcomes a new chief executive and its founder steps back from the limelight. Martin Brown, who created Wine-Searcher in 1999, announced he would be stepping down as CEO and his replacement would be Julian Perry, the creator of UK-based tech company Limitless. It’s not the first time that Brown has handed over the reins – in the company’s 20-year history there have been two other CEOs, with Brown taking the reins on three different occasions. “Initially, like most start-ups, I ran the business and worked

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two jobs. Then Anne Walsh was CEO, followed by Adon Kumar. I have been running Wine-Searcher for the last 10 years. Jules is our fourth CEO,” Brown said. Life has changed since the early days of Wine-Searcher, which Brown admits was rudimentary – a world away from the major industry resource it is today. Wine-Searcher is one of the most formidable specialist databases on the internet and is often referred to as the “Google for wine”. “What amazes me is how slowly it all took shape. You read about booming IT companies, but it took seven years before I

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

could pay myself a salary. We have been organically growing without venture capital funding for years. “When we started out, the sort of search we did was quite simple compared to what we show now about wine, spirits and beer. Tasting notes, encyclopedic content, market demand and supply data. These days we are at the forefront of what’s happening in IT – natural language, pattern recognition, and clustering algorithms that we use in conjunction with our expert wine-matching team.” Continuous improvement is an important part of the Wine-Searcher ethos, as Brown

explains: “Wine recommendations are a new focus. What is a good wine, at your price wine, available near you and recommended by a top critic? An enormous amount of technical effort goes into recommendations that no human can possibly do using all of these criteria. We are pushing the boundaries for wine trade, making use of recent changes that have come along in IT that make it easier for consumers to buy more wine” Stepping back from a handson, day-to-day role in a company you have started can be a hard thing for a businessman, but Brown is confident he is


“What amazes me is how slowly it all took shape. You read about booming IT companies, but it took seven years before I could pay myself a salary.”

In; Julian Perry

Out; Martin Brown.

making the right move. “I never really wanted to be CEO in the first place. I come from an IT background, the functional end of the business, and have never enjoyed being out front. I’m looking forward to stepping back – I’d like a new set of concerns. I’m not entirely sure what those concerns are going to be, but I’m looking forward to some new ones” Perry is equally looking forward to the challenge of moving Wine-Searcher on to the next stage.

“It’s an honor – and great responsibility – to take over from Martin, having worked with him and admired his focus and ingenuity from the start of Wine-Searcher,” Perry said. “Wine-Searcher relies on the dedication and passion of the multi-talented team of 65 staff primarily based in Auckland, as well as specialist remote staff around the world. “With our team we will grow and continue to redefine and lead the digital landscape for the wine industry.”

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   119


Bob’s Blog

BOB CAMPBELL MW My top Five Food and Wine Matches … and why they worked IT’S OFTEN easier to understand why we dislike a food or a wine than why we like a food or wine. For example I was unable to eat marmite after my cousin made a lavatorial reference to it when we were both around eight years old (I finally re-tasted it a few years ago and am now a marmite fan). Why am I dotty about freshly shucked oysters? Texturally they are not a big winner … but they taste like the sea. Similarly, gooseneck barnacles – perhaps the most delicious seafood I’ve ever eaten and yet they look like the exposed veins of a long-dead person (see above right). I love Riesling for its tension and acidity, my wife Marion hates Riesling for its tension and acidity. A pre-requisite to a great food and wine combination is that you must like, or even love, both. Then the magic really starts. I’ve listed some of my personal favourites but don’t be surprised if you find many of them

unappealing. I’ve also tried to analyse why the partnership works as well as it does.

FRESHLY-SHUCKED TIO POINT OYSTERS DRIZZLED WITH A SQUEEZE OF LIME & FRAMINGHAM 2013 F-SERIES OLD VINE RIESLING Why? Acidity in the lime pulls down the wine’s generous acidity making it taste richer and more interesting. The wine’s flavours don’t change, they amplify. Both are from Marlborough which is a

psychological plus.

ENGLISH STILTON CHEESE WITH 1985 DOW VINTAGE PORT

Why? The wonderfully tangy, salty cheese retains its integrity, as does the moderately sweet vintage port but an amazing synergy occurs as nuances of extraterrestrial flavours appear out of nowhere. Check with your cardiologist before trying this.

GOOSENECK BARNACLES AND VINHO VERDE

Why? I’ve only tasted this combination once but dream about it regularly. It was in Portugal where the Douro River empties out into the sea. My host asked me to choose from the menu. I deferred and invited him to find something “the locals might enjoy”. A steaming plate appeared. Attached to each large barnacle was long, white vein.

“What do I eat?” I asked. “Just nip the vein off ” I was told. They were fantastic! The barnacles put me into a trance-like state while the Vinho Verde snapped me back to reality and steadied my nerve for another barnacle. This was one of my greatest food and wine matching experiences.

BELUGA CAVIAR AND 1982 SALON CHAMPAGNE Why? They are both horrendously expensive

PAN-FRIED GOOSE LIVER AND 1967 CHATEAU D’YQUEM

Why? Because it is the greatest vintage of d’Yquem I’ve tasted and I’m crazy about goose liver (as long as I don’t think too much about it). Both are rich and heavenly.

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candidates. The tension in both written and tasting exams was palpable. I recall wondering how anyone could taste wines effectively under such pressure. My antidote was to practise deep yoga breaths and Buddhist meditation exercises with subtlety so as not to alarm the candidates around me. Some of the Theory questions appear deceptively simple, for example, “Do

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

wine consumers need wine experts?” To gain the required number of points you would probably have to identify different types of consumers and outline how useful a wine expert might be to each of them. You’d also need to define “wine expert”. “Anyone with an MW qualification” probably wouldn’t cut the mustard.


NZ wines shine at UK Chardonnay Challenge UK CHARDONNAY lovers Keith Prothero and Paul Day (they describe themselves as “obsessive oenophiles”) decided to test the assertion that “prices of Burgundy bear no relation to their quality and that the New World has more than enough well priced prime talent to challenge for Burgundy’s unassailable crown.” The Great Blind Chardonnay Challenge was born. The idea was simple… they would pitch 10 of the world’s best New World Chardonnays against 10 of Burgundy’s finest with no price limit set for either camp but with wines being drawn from recent vintages, mostly post-2011, and all commercially available in the UK. After multiple blind tastings 10 wines from Burgundy and 10 from the New World were chosen. The wines were randomised and served blind to 12 tasters made up of experienced Burgundy collectors and several trade

professionals. Wines from the New World comprised: • NZ x 2 • USA x 4 • Australia x 4 The Group’s Top Five Wines (out of 20) • Domaine Leflaive Chevalier Montrachet 2014 • A Ente Meursault Clos des Ambres 2014 • Kumeu River Mate’s Vineyard Chardonnay 2014 • Neudorf Moutere Chardonnay 2014 • Sandhi Sanford & Benedict Chardonnay 2011 That’s a great result for New Zealand Chardonnay and particularly for Kumeu River and Neudorf (I awarded the 2014 Neudorf Moutere Chardonnay my only 100 pt score). When Kumeu

River had a great success in an extensive comparative tasting against Burgundy a couple of years ago winemaker, Michael Brajkovich said – “I’m not surprised. We use screwcaps, they don’t.” Did closures give the two New Zealand wines a leg up in this case? It’s entirely possible.

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Customs & Excise

Changes coming at Customs TERRY BROWN, SENIOR RESPONSIBLE OFFICER FOR THE CUSTOMS AND EXCISE ACT RICHARD BARGH, ACTING GROUP MANAGER, REVENUE AND ASSURANCE

IN THE June/July issue of New Zealand Winegrower we gave a more general overview of the new Customs and Excise Act which builds on the regulations that became effective in February last year. Here we provide more detail on the Act changes that affect you. We also advise on new requirements for excise licensees. The biggest change is that the Act, which comes into force on 1 October, has been completely rewritten and restructured, although the intent remains the same. The wording has also been modernised and all the sectional references have changed. To see exactly what these are, a Comparison Guide between the old and new Acts is on our website www.customs.govt.nz/ about-us/customs-and-exciseact-2018/ There are some new services and some changes to existing services that address known inconsistencies and hotspots. These range from small to significant. Please have a look at the self-

CHANGE

DESCRIPTION

Changes to excise

Customs-controlled area (CCA) licensees must now file an excise entry or return for every agreed entry period, even if it’s a nil return.

Administrative penalties

The same administrative penalties will apply to exporters, importers and excise clients and will be capped at a maximum amount.

Compensatory interest and late payment penalties

This system replaces the additional duty regime. It is designed to be fairer and more transparent and ensure that any charges are proportionate to the offence. The system is based on Inland Revenue’s use-of-money and late payment penalties, and will apply in the same way to importers, exporters, and excise licensees. There will be clarity on when a refund or remission of interest and penalties could be granted.

Customs controlledarea (CCA) fit and proper person

This is a new requirement that a person or entity applying for a CCA license must provide evidence they are a fit and proper person; this includes a declaration and a Ministry of Justice criminal record report.

Trade Single Window (TSW)

Trade Single Window users (part of the Joint Border Management System) will need to provide evidence of ongoing competency to maintain their user registration with Customs.

Administrative review

A new formal internal review process so customers can more easily appeal duty assessment decisions; an alternative avenue to the Customs Appeal Authority process.

Storing Business Records

Business records can now be stored outside New Zealand, including in the ‘cloud’; customers and third party suppliers must apply to Customs to do this.

directed, education modules on our website. These take you through several scenarios based on the main changes. We’re also

encouraging industry organisations to create training for their members. To contact the Act implementation team, email

Act2018@customs.govt.nz

ELECTRONIC ENTRIES Our excise officers have

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03 338 6296 The biggest change is that the Act, which comes into force on 1 October, has been completely rewritten and restructured, although the intent remains the same. been out and about talking to licensees about the new requirement for excise entries to be electronic. This is being implemented in three phases: 1 August was the mandatory date for electronic entries by licensees who submit monthly. Licensees who submit on a six-monthly basis need to be doing this electronically by January next year. Licensees who submit on a 12-monthly basis need to be doing this electronically by July next year. Please note that there will be an education period for the new system so incorrect entries will

not attract a penalty until after that time. They have also been helping licensees with the new TSW user competency assessment that is required under our new Act. It is important for entries to be correct as users play a vital role in helping us gain accurate information about goods coming in and out of New Zealand. For more information, talk to your excise officer or contact your local Customs office. More information on the regulations that came into force last year is on our website https://www.customs.govt.nz/ business/excise/

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Not on the Label

LEGAL MATTERS WITH CHARLOTTE HENLEY (KENSINGTON SWAN, WELLINGTON) & DEANNA WONG (DELAB, HONG KONG)

Jumping on the China bandwagon EVERYONE APPRECIATES the potential of the Chinese market from a size perspective. But as Chinese consumers are starting to drink and appreciate more wine, its value and potential to New Zealand winegrowers is increasingly being recognised. However, China is a sophisticated and unique market for intellectual property (IP) and this includes trade mark use and protection. There

are a range of things you should be aware of before considering exporting your wine brand to China. What do you risk if you don’t do this? You risk not being able to sell your wine there or having to re-label your products, not to mention you also cannot stop someone ripping off your brand. At worst, you risk getting sued by someone who stole your brand. The two key things you

INDUSTRY NEWS PROFILES

need to do before you start are firstly your due diligence and secondly take action to stake your claim in China. Consider having a look at your IP strategy and making sure it aligns with your commercial strategy in terms of scope/timing/ potential.

CHECKING BEFORE SELLING

Entering a new market is an expensive exercise – both in time and money. Before you incur significant

LATEST RESEARCH REGIONAL UPDATES

costs arranging distribution channels and undertaking marketing specific for your launch into China, it’s important to first check that no one else has prior rights to the same or a similar brand. Don’t just assume you can freely use your brand to sell product in China or that another entity has not taken the brand for itself. It is important to carry out due diligence checks using a lawyer you can

MARKETING UPDATES ARCHIVES

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What do you risk if you don’t do this? You risk not being able to sell your wine there or having to relabel your products, not to mention you also cannot stop someone ripping off your brand. At worst, you risk getting sued by someone who stole your brand. trust, who has good China experience. China’s legal system has been developing rapidly, so it is important to ensure your strategy is up-to-date. Given the Chinese courts can award large damages payments to businesses that claim infringement of their IP rights, getting proper advice beforehand is important.

SEEK PROTECTION EARLY – STAKE YOUR CLAIM

Stake your claim to your brand in China by seeking protection for your trade mark well in advance of starting to organise export and sale of your product to China. This is because it is common in China for third parties to register well known overseas brands. As China is a ‘first to file’ country, if someone else applies to register your brand, it may be difficult if not impossible for you to

stop them. Kiwi enterprises, big and small, have been the target of trade mark hijacking which occurs where a third party takes a trade mark/brand as its own. Even worse, if someone manages to register your trade mark, the mark may be used to prevent you from marketing and selling your own legitimate product in China. Do not underestimate the importance of making sure you are protected early.

PROTECT CHINESE LANGUAGE VERSIONS OF YOUR MARK

Protecting the English language version of your trade mark does not give you the right to the Chinese language version and vice versa. Most foreign brands are referred to in China by their Chinese translation or transliteration. In some

cases, and in certain regions, Chinese consumers may not even be aware of the English trade mark or brand name. Therefore, aside from the English mark, the selection, use and registration of Chinese language marks is equally important. This can be based on the mark’s translation, its transliteration (choosing Chinese characters with similar phonetic sounds to the English mark); a combination of both translation and transliteration or at times something completely unrelated to the English mark altogether. Therefore, as well as protecting the English language version of your mark, it is important to separately consider if it is necessary to protect the Chinese language version of your mark. Otherwise you may be unable to market

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Protecting the English language version of your trade mark does not give you the right to the Chinese language version and vice versa.

your wine brand using the Chinese language version (even on restaurant menus!), when you get to that point. Also consider whether you have a logo that needs protection as well.

TIMEFRAMES

It can take up to two years or more to complete registration of a Chinese trademark. Some Chinese

online platforms will not list New Zealand products unless the brand they carry is protected by a registered Chinese trademark. On the other hand, when a trade mark application is filed in China, if objections to registration are raised, you only receive 1-2 weeks to respond or the application is rejected. Given the timing challenges in the

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Chinese trade mark system, it’s important to have an experienced IP practitioner (combined with a New Zealand adviser if possible) to assist you with options and recommendations for getting your brand protected.

EXAMPLES OF WHAT CAN GO WRONG

Recently there has been a string of Chinese cases where overseas wine labels have been held to ransom by opportunistic Chinese enterprises which saw a gap in the brand owners’ protection and took the brand as their own. These entities have demanded very large sums of money for safe return of the trade mark, often by suing the brand owner. Entities as large as Penfolds, Laffite and others have experienced brand hijack in China. Whilst the cases can often be settled, the terms almost always leave the brand owner with a choice of being seriously out of pocket or forced to rebrand. The “it won’t happen to me because I am too small” optimist is a common victim of brand hijacking. Another version of brand hijacking occurs when you do not have

Recently there has been a string of Chinese cases where overseas wine labels have been held to ransom by opportunistic Chinese enterprises which saw a gap in the brand owners’ protection and took the brand as their own.

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your brand protected and your distributor decides to register “for you” but in its own name. The issue then becomes a tricky one if the commercial relationship turns sour, or the distributor decides to import other wines and use your brand on those as well. All in all, experience (and the odd horror story) shows that an investment in your intellectual property rights, particularly trade marks, before you enter China with your wine brand will be one of the best investments you make in the long term.

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News Levy Update

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Rate of Levy Under the Wine (Grape Wine Levy) Order 2016

Pursuant to clause 9 of the Wine (Grape Wine Levy) Order 2016, it was resolved at a Board meeting of New Zealand Winegrowers Incorporated on 21 June 2018 that the levy rate to apply to sales of grape wine, or the grape wine component of grape wine products, from 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019 be set at the rate of 2.5 cents + GST per litre. Philip Gregan, Chief Executive Officer, New Zealand Winegrowers Incorporated.

Rate of Levy Under the Commodity Levies (Winegrapes) Order 2016

Pursuant to clause 11 of the Commodity Levies (Winegrapes) Order 2016, it was resolved at a Board meeting of New Zealand Winegrowers Incorporated on 21 June 2018 that: The levy rate on winegrapes for the levy year from 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2019 be set at the rate of 0.75% + GST as follows: (a) for winegrapes sold by or on behalf of the grower, 0.75% + GST of the farm-gate price of the grapes (unless paragraph (b) applies); (b) for winegrapes exported by or on behalf of the grower, 0.75% + GST of the free on-board value of the grapes; (c) for winegrapes made into grape juice or grape juice concentrate that is sold or exported, by or on behalf of the grower, 0.75% + GST of the notional price of the grapes. The notional price of grapes made into grape juice or grape juice concentrate for the year 2018 vintage be the 75% quartile price for the region and variety concerned as determined from the previous vintage listed in the last published version of the New Zealand Winegrowers grape price data for the previous vintage (“Last Grape Price Data”). In the event that there are no listings of the variety and region concerned in the Last Grape Price Data, the notional price will be the 75% quartile price for New Zealand for the variety concerned, as determined by the previous vintage listed in the Last Grape Price Data. Philip Gregan, Chief Executive Officer, New Zealand Winegrowers Incorporated

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   129


NEWS Health & Safety

Are you managing your business safety risks? No employer (or PCBU) want any of their staff to be injured and I’m sure no workers turn up for work planning for that to happen each day, yet the New Zealand statistics for workplace injury are poor in comparison to both the Australian and United Kingdom figures. Every business involves an element of risk so it’s really THE REGULATOR is taking action - with the introduction of the new fine thresholds under the Health and Safety at Work Act, fines for workplace injury have significantly increased. A recent example of this was a sawmill company fined $323,437 when a worker’s gloved hand was caught in machinery. So the question is – are you taking action for what you can influence to manage your risks? Could an injury like the above occur in your business? Think about PTO’s on equipment, rotating parts in processing equipment, or large heavy items being shifted that could cause a crush injury. Let’s face it, every business involves an element of risk so it’s really important to understand the critical risks and be assured your controls are effective. The key to identifying your

operational risks is to conduct a solid risk assessment to examine all your key activities and also challenge the effectiveness of your controls. In doing so, it’s important you involve the right cross section of workers who have the knowledge, skills and experience to contribute. A good practice risk management approach is based on the principles that: All hazards within the business (including those associated with equipment, facilities, modifications to equipment or facilities, change, and human factors) and those that originate outside the business but may impact upon its objectives must be identified The risk associated with the identified hazards must be assessed and controls put in place where they cannot be

important to understand the critical risks and be assured your controls are effective. PHOTO SUPPLIED BY NZW.

eliminated Risks must be monitored and reviewed on a regular basis, including where change

occurs, is identified, proposed or planned Adequate recovery processes shall be developed in case

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of a loss of control Applicable legal obligations relating to risk assessment and implementation of necessary controls to manage risk as low as reasonably practicable (ALARP) Human factors associated with workplace design, equipment design and processes are fully considered as part of the risk assessment and planning phases. Workers involved in the development and implementation of risk management systems and processes are trained appropriately. A well-developed risk register for a vineyard operation would typically list critical risks and controls associated with moving machinery, rotating equipment, work at height, transient labour, gas or fumes and confined spaces, to name but a few. In general terms these can be managed in several ways - the

options (in order of effectiveness) are: Elimination of the hazard Reduction of the risk by reducing the likeliho o d of a release of the hazard Reduction of the risk by reducing the severity of the consequences Ongoing management of the risk through effective control Acceptance of the risk. Where the risk exposure is to be reduced or managed, appropriate control measures (to prevent the hazard being released in the first instance) and recovery measures (to mitigate or minimise the consequences) need to be determined, implemented and/ or maintained. The Hierarchy of control measures as outlined in the Health and Safety at Work

Regulations, are: Elimination – completely eliminating the hazard Substitution – replacing the material or process with a less hazardous one Engineering/Design – design of protective barriers or improvement of process design to minimise exposure of people Administration – providing administrative controls (e.g. training, standards) Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) – using properly fitted equipment where other controls are not practical. The use of Elimination or

Minimisation processes to control risk is well recognised but we still see businesses leaping from “here is the risk” to “what PPE do I require to control it”? PPE is the lowest form of control and should only be considered where all other control options have been exhausted. Once your controls have been developed you should establish a programme of inspecting or auditing to ensure that the controls remain effective. Be wary of changes in the workplace that might affect your controls and most of all engage with your staff to help identify and control developing risk. L et’s help ma ke Ne w Zealand’s workplaces safer and constantly think about risk man­agement in the business – “what can happen, how can it happen and what does it mean?” www.intesafety.co.nz

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Research Updates

Research Supplement Information and updates on New Zealand Winegrowers research programmes. Editors Dr Matias Kinzurik and Will Kerner, Research Programme Manager A regular feature to inform industry people about research projects being undertaken for their benefit. Newly approved projects (when available) are briefly summarised in the first section ‘Introducing New Projects’. Longer reports in the section headed ‘Progress Reports’, will describe what has been achieved so far. When completed, each project will be reported in full detail, with references, on nzwine.com

Quality Wine Styles for Existing and Developing Markets Lighter wine (PGP)

University of Auckland and Plant and Food Research (Various) Jointly funded by NZW and MPI Primary Growth Partnership (PGP) fund.

High-throughput genotyping of transposoninduced mutations in vines C Winefield Lincoln University

Population genomics of the wine spoilage yeast Brettanomyces bruxellensis M Goddard Auckland University

Low alcohol-reduced calorie wines using molecular sponges for sugar removal B Fedrizzi University of Auckland

Shoot trimming effects on Pinot noir vine leaf area to fruit weight ratio, productivity and fruit composition Lincoln University

Breaking the quality-productivity seesaw in wine grape production (Pinot Noir Programme)

Various University of Auckland, Plant and Food Research and Lincoln University Jointly funded by NZW and MBIE

Assessment of commercially available yeast nutrient products on Sauvignon blanc microvin ferments K Creasy

The role of microbes in regional Pinot Noir quality and style M Goddard University of Auckland

Exploring the chemical space in Vineyard Ecosystems (VE) Programme juices and wines B Fedrizzi University of Auckland

Untargeted aroma compound chemical analysis of Pinot noir R Hill Hills Laboratory

Testing the effect of gelatin pre-fermentation fining on ethanol production B Fedrizzi University of Auckland

Pests and Disease

Grapevine trunk disease; young vine ecology, diagnostics and preventative treatments N Hoskins New Zealand Viticulture Nursery Association Incorporated (VINA)

Virus diversity in New Zealand grapevines: sequence, ecology and impact – The Rod Bonfiglioli Scholarship R MacDiarmid - student A Blouin Plant and Food Research

Optimising management of grapevine trunk diseases for vineyard longevity M Sosnowski South Australian Research & Development Institute

Developing powdery mildew best practise in New Zealand vineyards A Lambourne Supported by MPI Sustainable Farming Fund

UC Davis collaboration to determine factors that affect colour in Pinot noir wines when grapes are harvested at lower than target berry soluble solids. C Grose Plant and Food Research

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Spray protocols to quantify and optimise spray deposits applied to dormant grapevines (trunks, heads, cordons and canes)

M Walter Plant and Food Research Supported by MPI Sustainable Farming Fund as part of the Powdery mildew best practise project.

Cost Reduction/Increased Profitability Precision Grape Yield Analyser Programme 2016-2021 A Werner Lincoln Agritech Limited

An automated grape yield estimation system – The Rod Bonfiglioli Scholarship M Legg Massey University

Sustainability/Organics

Pinot noir wine composition and sensory characteristics as affected by soil type and irrigation in the Waipara region Lincoln University

Vineyard Ecosystems Programme

University of Auckland and Plant and Food Research Various Jointly funded by NZW and MBIE

Sector weather data licence & tools HortPlus (NZ) Ltd

Cost efficient optimisation of weed management in vineyards M Krasnow Thoughtful Viticulture

Optimisation of irrigation and water savings in Marlborough Sauvignon blanc and Pinot noir and Hawke’s Bay Chardonnay and Merlot M Krasnow Thoughtful Viticulture


Research Progress Reports

PROGRESS REPORTS NZWRC Pinot Noir Programme (CO-FUNDED BY MBIE) The Pinot Noir Programme aims to support the growth of export sales, grow returns for wineries and meet consumer preferences in new and established markets. The first year of the five-year programme will focus activity on achieving the following aims.

Defining and measuring perceived quality in New Zealand Pinot Noir wine: experts’ insights

The programme aims to produce new knowledge to enable our wine industry to improve practices and outcomes. Wines from each of New Zealand’s major Pinot Noir-producing regions, across various production methods, will be assessed by wine professionals, connoisseurs and regular consumers. The sensory data will be associated with wine physico-chemical composition to give an holistic view of what constitutes perceived quality in New Zealand Pinot Noir wines as a function of region, price point and taster expertise.

Generating holistic product evaluations of Pinot Noir wine quality by New Zealand and overseas wine consumers

Panels of up to 150 consumers will assess the quality of Pinot Noir wines to uncover the interplay between intrinsic (what the wine tastes like in the glass) and extrinsic (price or packaging) attributes, which may influence the perception of quality.

Developing and utilising an in vitro grape berry growth culture system

The programme aims to establish a new methodology for an in vitro berry growth culture system to improve understanding of

the formation of biological and chemical markers of wine quality in current viticultural and wine production systems. It will enable direct testing of the impact of nutritional and environmental regimes on berry development and ripening.

grape berry physiology through development and the subsequent formation of anthocyanin, total phenolic and amino acid compounds.

Manipulating the yieldquality seesaw via competition sink, bunch micro-climate and leaf area manipulations

The programme aims to provide an understanding of how different vine types influence the perceived qualities of the commercial wines. In additon to investigating groups of ideotype vines of differing capacity and performance (e.g. high/ low vigour, high/low crop load) within vineyard blocks, we will investigate contrasting vineyard management regime types (high-end and commercial).

A key objective of the programme is to understand how diverse factors, such as climate and leaf area, impact the quantity and quality of Pinot Noir production. Two key areas will be investigated: 1) whether we can increase yield without compromising quality via viticulture practices that modify competing carbohydrate sinks, and, (2) how varying bunch microclimate through changes in light and temperature regulates

Measuring the impact of differing vine ideotypes and vineyard management regimes

Measuring the impact of contrasting winemaking regimes

The programme aims to assess the impact of

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   133


winemaking factors on wine quality. Validation wines will be made from groups of vine types (e.g. high/low vigour, high/low crop load) using both high-end (hand harvest, whole-berry ferment, cold soak, indigenous ferment, extended maceration at high temperature, indigenous malolactic and late sulphur additions) and commercial (simulated machine harvest, crushed berries, inoculated ferment, short maceration, microoxygenation and inoculated malolactic) winemaking modes. In addition, we will simulate, compare and contrast differences in harvest methods, crushing, skin contact and micro-oxygenation regimes.

Developing semiautomated 3-D and multispectral bunch-

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sorting technologies

Rapid bunch sorting may improve both yield and quality in New Zealand pinot noir wines. The programme will investigate the effects of bunch morphology (particularly berry number and berry size distribution) on wine composition. We will develop 3-D or depth bunchscanning methodologies using bunches from our vineyard management trials. After bunches are scanned and 3-D imaged they will be destructively measured for volume, mass, density, berry number and berry size distribution.

Assessing the impact of contrasting winemaking manipulation at medium scale

Based on knowledge gained from in vitro and controlled environment

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

experiments, we will develop a series of “validation” wines with profoundly altered composition achieved by viticultural and winemaking manipulations to test with both experts and consumers. We will also use grapes from our bunch morphology and maturitysorting techniques at small/ medium scale to maximise the formation and retention of desired secondary metabolites in Pinot Noir

wine production. Wines will be made to maximise the formation and retention of desired characteristics and then will be used in other projects within the Pinot Noir Programme.

Identifying a chemical signature for pinot noir quality: wine-omics and extractability and reaction

The overall aim of the Pinot Noir Programme is to provide viticulturists and


winemakers with analytical tools which will allow them to quantify the quality potential of pinot noir grapes in the lead up to, or at the point of, harvest. The wine-omics work will determine an unbiased chemical signature (i.e. one that is not influenced by the limits of our current understanding) of commercial pinot noir wine samples. This involves creating new detection methodologies, unlike current approaches which rely on a pre-set suite of known compounds. The extractability and reaction experiments will help us understand how the physical interactions and chemical reactions that occur between grape and yeast influence the final wine concentrations of critical components, particularly those responsible for colour and mouthfeel. This will

give us a more complete picture of what is happening during fermentation, which will enable us to identify the key compounds that need to be measured to quantify quality.

Pinot Noir grape and wine phenolic profiling and Pinot Noir winemaking and phenolics

Grape phenolics include the major classes of molecules ultimately responsible for wine colour (anthocyanins) and astringency (tannins), along with indirect effects on aroma and taste through oxidation processes. There are reasonably good links and correlations between the quantities of phenolics present in grapes, particularly the skins and seeds, and the levels in the final wines. However, it is widely

recognised that we lack methods that can be used quickly to provide reliable information for the grape grower to assess phenolic quantity and the types of phenolics present, in addition to assessments made by direct tasting. The same “validation” Pinot Noir wines that will be examined by sensory panels and profiled by local wine experts, will be tested in our laboratories, along with grape samples and wines derived from viticultural trials within the wider programme. As these methodologies mature, more focused pinot noir winemaking projects will be undertaken with a focus on the effects of oxygen during winemaking.

Understanding aroma: measuring glycosides in

Pinot Noir

Both studying and understanding the aroma of pinot noir is challenging; the aroma is described with notes ranging from strawberry/raspberry to spicy and florals, with regions and climate providing distinctive styles, and the chemical signature connected to these notes has not yet been fully elucidated. We will look at the aroma fraction in pinot noir, producing target molecules that will be analysed in commercial and experimental grape juices and wines. The availability of these molecules will also allow us to study their direct and indirect impact on the aroma of pinot noir. Researchers from The University of Auckland, Lincoln University and Plant & Food Research contributed to this article on the Pinot Noir Programme.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   135


Nursery vines and grapevine trunk disease Eline van Zijll de Jong1, Nick Hoskins2 and Geoff Thorpe1 1 Linnaeus, 2Vine Managers 14-107 OUR UNDERSTANDING of grapevine trunk disease has come a long way over the last 10 years and New Zealand Winegrowers projects and the efforts of researchers in both New Zealand and Australia have added significantly to the work of the wider international research community. While research is ongoing, we now understand from surveys conducted by Mark Sosnowski and Dion Mundy that Botryosphaeria and Eutypa dieback are the two most serious grapevine trunk diseases and Sauvignon Blanc is more susceptible to these diseases than other varieties. Spores of the fungi causing these diseases are spread by rain splash and wind and have the potential to infect the vines through pruning wounds. Protection of pruning wounds has been shown to be effective in reducing the levels of fungal infection. What about the young vines purchased from your nursery? Can these vines also be infected with dieback and other trunk diseases? Should young vines be treated with hot water to eradicate these pathogens? These were all questions posed in a project funded by New Zealand Winegrowers (NZW) and the New Zealand Viticulture Nursery Association (ViNA). The project was born out of a 2014 review of the New Zealand Winegrowers Grafted Grapevine

136   // 

Standard (NZWGGS) which focused on nursery practices which might contribute to the spread of trunk diseases in young vines. All of the New Zealand nurseries producing vines certified to the NZWGGS were found to already be doing much of what was advocated in the literature to prevent the spread of disease, such as growing rootstock on trellis, frequent emptying and cleaning of hydration tanks, close attention to hygiene in the grafting and callus room environments, as well as sterilisation of callus material. What was revealed from the 2014 review was that there was a lack of robust data on the incidence of potential fungal trunk pathogens in young vines produced in New Zealand by ViNA member nurseries and that, while hot water treatment (HWT) was being

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

advocated by some in our industry, there was also a lack of robust data demonstrating its effectiveness in New Zealand nurseries and vineyards. The international research community has long advocated the use of HWT for the disinfection of grapevine nursery stocks. The standard treatment involves immersing propagated materials in hot water at 50°C for 30 min. In cooler climates such as New Zealand, a treatment temperature of 48°C has been recommended to reduce the risk of vine death post treatment. HWT can be applied to rootstock and scionwood cuttings prior to grafting or to young grafted vines just prior to dispatch, or a combination of both. In New Zealand the high mortality rate sometimes associated with HWT when applied to propagation material and

vines, as well as doubts about the long term effectiveness of the treatment, meant there was a strong reluctance by nurseries to implement it as a standard practice. To measure the effectiveness of HWT, it was clear that highly sensitive tests needed to be developed to detect fungal trunk pathogens in grapevines. The conventional method of culturing fungi on agar plates for visual identification in the laboratory has significant limitations. The target species are frequently overrun by faster-growing fungi and often only a small proportion of the fungal species present in a vine readily grow in culture. The method is also not quantitative, meaning that while it can help to confirm the presence of a potential pathogen, it is unable to demonstrate how much fungal mycelium


(biomass) is present in a sample. Given that the mere presence of a fungal species does not necessarily equate with disease expression in a plant, this is a major limitation when trying to determine the health status of young vines. A number of fungal species are associated with each of the main trunk diseases and new tests were needed that could discriminate the more virulent species from other closely related but less problematic ones. The tests also needed to be sensitive enough to detect low levels of the target fungi and be able to measure changes in these levels in order to determine the effectiveness of HWT. The molecular technique known as quantitative PCR (qPCR) was selected for its sensitivity, specificity and ability to detect and quantify multiple pathogens simultaneously. At the start of the project, DNA sequencing (metagenomics) was used to study the total fungal diversity in a subset of young vines sampled pre-dispatch from one New Zealand ViNA member nursery. These Sauvignon Blanc vines grafted onto 3306 rootstock were found to be host to a wide range of fungi. Over 100 different fungal species were detected through metagenomics. This matched the high fungal diversity reported to occur in older vines. The vast majorTreatment

ity of fungi were not known to be detrimental to vine production. The potential trunk pathogens that were identified in the young vines were species which had previously been reported to be present in New Zealand and only those fungi associated with black foot disease (Cylindrocarpons) were widely detected. New diagnostic qPCR tests were developed for 17 potential trunk pathogens present in New Zealand vineyards (Table 1). These included all of the potentially pathogenic species identified in the young vines by metagenomics, as well as those reported in the literature to be present here. Instead of having to test for each of the pathogens separately, some of the tests could be combined and only 10 reactions were required to specifically detect each of the target pathogens. Grapevines could be tested directly for the presence and levels of potential trunk pathogens without the need to isolate the fungi in culture first. However, because qPCR tests are currently unable to distinguish between live and dead DNA (up to 12 months before the fungal DNA is degraded in the plant), classical culturing of fungi on agar plates was also employed when trying to assess the efficacy of HWT immediately posttreatment. To study the effects of HWT on young vines over

DISEASE GROUP

SPECIES TARGET

Botryosphaeria dieback

Botryosphaeria dothidea Diplodia mutilia Diplodia seriata Neofusioccum australe Neofusicoccum luteum Neofusioccum parvum

Eutypa dieback

Eutypa lata

Black foot

Cylindrocarpon destructans complex 1a Cylindrocarpon destructans complex 2b Cylindrocarpon destructans complex 3c Cylindrocarpon macrodidymum complex 4d Dactylonectria pauciseptatum Ilyonectria liriodendri

Petri disease

Phaeomoniella chlamydospora Cadophora luteo-olivacea

Phomopsis dieback

Phomospsis viticola

Verticillium wilt

Verticillum dahliae

Table 1. The seventeen potential trunk pathogens for which molecular diagnostic tests based on quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) were developed. a = includes Ilyonectria europaea, Ilyonectria robusta and Ilyoenctria lusitanica. b = includes Ilyonectria coprosmae, Ilyonectria liligena, Ilyonectria pseudodestructans, Ilyonectria mors-panacis, Ilyonectria cyclaminicola, Ilyonectra panacis, Ilyonectria radicicola and ilyonectria rufa. c = includes Ilyonectria crassa d = includes Dadtylonectria macrodidyma, Dactylonectria torresensis, Dactylonectria novazelandica, Dactylonectria alcacerensis and Dactylonectria estremocensis.

time, two large-scale field trials (1 ha per treatment - 8 ha total ) were established in a commercial vineyard in Marlborough using Sauvignon Blanc vines from one New Zealand ViNA member nursery. In Trial 1, HWT at either 48°C or 50°C was applied to dormant grafted vines immediately predispatch in October 2014. In Trial 2, both the scionwood

and the rootstock material received HWT at either 48°C or 50°C immediately pregrafting only, or pre-grafting and again pre-dispatch. These vines were planted out in the same vineyard in October 2015 and both trials were monitored over three and two growing seasons, respectively. What did we learn? The pre-dispatch HWT at 48°C

First Grade GGS vines (%)

Second Grade Vines (%)

Rejects (%)

Dead (%)

Control

86.4

3.1

0.1

10.3

Pre-grafting HWT 48˚C

40.7

2.6

1.4

55.3

Pew-grafting HWT 50˚C

65.3

4.0

2.4

28.3

Table 2. Recovery and quality of grapevines of Sauvignon Blanc on Schwarzmann after field nursery growth following two different pre-grafting hot water treatments at 48°C or 50°C.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   137


Figure 1. Incidence of potential black foot pathogens based on microbiological culture and qPCR in grafted field-grown grapevines of Sauvignon Blanc on 3306 (Trial 1) immediately following and ≥1 year after a pre-dispatch hot water treatment (HWT) at 48 or 50°C.

or 50°C delayed budburst of Sauvignon Blanc vines for up to 10 days but had no impact on vine strike (100% in all treatments). While there appeared to be a small reduction in vigour in the first year, this effect had completely disappeared by the end of the second year. As a note of caution, Sauvignon Blanc has been found to be more resilient to HWT than many other grape varieties, and the impact of HWT on other widely planted grape varieties under New Zealand condi-

138   // 

tions remains to be determined. When HWT at 48°C or 50°C was applied to rootstock and scionwood material immediately pregrafting, the number of vines which met the NZWGGS physical specifications when lifted from the field nursery was severely reduced. Not only was the level of vine death post grafting very high but the physical quality of the vines that survived was also significantly lower (Table 2).The occurrence of potential

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

trunk pathogens was determined by qPCR analysis and in selected years also by microbiological culture. As also demonstrated through metagenomics, the most virulent species associated with Petri disease (P. chlamydospora), Eutypa dieback, Phomopsis dieback and Verticillium wilt were absent or rare in the young vines that were tested predispatch. Potential black foot and Botryosphaeria dieback pathogens were more widespread, despite industry-recognised best

practice hygiene measures and the fact that they were planted in free-draining and young nursery sites (Trial 1 in virgin soil and Trial 2 in second year of nursery production). These fungi were only detected at low levels in the rootstock and scionwood pre-grafting. The effectiveness of HWT for disinfection of nursery stocks was variable. HWT failed to eradicate Botryosphaeriaceae species from Sauvignon Blanc vines but did reduce the occurrence of potential black foot pathogens (Figure 1). Because DNA from dead fungal material can be detected by qPCR immediately after treatment, the effect of HWT was only evident in microbiological culture. However, the benefits were only short-term and after one growing season the incidence and quantity of potential black foot pathogens in treated vines was no different from the control. Because the vineyard soils were not tested at the time of planting and the same species were detected before and after treatment, it was unclear if the vines were recolonised by residual fungi that survived HWT or by fungi occurring in vineyard soils or both.


Even though potential black foot pathogens were widespread in the young nursery vines, there were no visual signs of disease in the young vines after 3 years in the vineyard. Symptoms and vine deaths are generally only observed when other factors such as rootstock variety, drainage, soil condition, planting conditions are suboptimal. Botryosphaeria dieback symptoms are usually observed in vines over eight years old. The research project has improved our understanding of young vine ecology and has successfully developed highly sensitive, reliable and fast turn-around qPCR tests for 17 potential grapevine trunk disease pathogens. It has also shown that while HWT when applied pre-dispatch has no significant impact on vine strike or vigour of Sauvignon Blanc vines in New Zealand conditions, at best it is only partially effective in reducing the populations of some potential pathogen species. HWT vines are also quickly recolonised by fungi after planting. Furthermore, when HWT was applied pre grafting, there was a very significant negative impact on nursery survival rates and vine physical specifications. It is important to recognise that only a small number of vines were tested in this study but the qPCR tools developed as part of the research project has paved the way for a more comprehensive study including a wider range of nursery producers, varieties, rootstocks and vineyard sites. Long-term monitoring of the HWT vines in the

vineyard trial sites (including regular molecular diagnostic testing) would also help the industry to gain a much better understanding of the

distribution and impact of potential trunk pathogens over time under field conditions and may eventually allow the nursery industry

to establish acceptable threshold levels for a range of potentially pathogenic fungal species in nursery stocks.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   139


GISBORNE (3)

Powdery Mildew Case Studies

HAWKE’S BAY (3)

MARLBOROUGH (4)

16-107 RESEARCH WORK, and the success of many growers, suggests we have the tools to control powdery. So why are some able to and others not? We worked with a group of growers with varying powdery mildew infection levels to determine what successful and not so successful management practice look like. Ten case studies across the country had their current management practices assessed included PM infection levels, canopy density, spray diary assessment, sprayer set-up and sprayer operation. Initial assessments of the vineyard practice looked at what was done in the 2016 /17 season. From these it was found that no one factor, if done correctly on its own, will significantly reduce PM

140   // 

levels. Rather all aspects of powdery management needed to be done correctly to control powdery mildew. However, one practice was identified in common for all case studies with high infection levels – sprayer setup and operation. If sprayer setup and operation was poor it was more likely that infection levels were high. This finding supports the current industry advice on powdery mildew management, that there are five key management areas - canopy management, chemical timing, chemical selection/ rates, sprayer set-up and spray technique. All of these areas are important, but sprayer setup is the one that is most often associated with failures. That is - a well set up sprayer applying a ‘weaker’ fungicide pro-

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

gramme can still achieve good powdery mildew control, but a ‘strong’ fungicide programme poorly applied will result in problems. In the project when looking at sprayer setup and operation a number of aspects were considered and scored (each aspect received ten points if the grower was doing it correctly e.g. 100% was good). These included: • Spray head angle to canopy • Spray head distance from canopy • Nozzle pressure • 60-70% volume into fruit zone • Fan speed • Adjust sprayer to different row widths • Sprayer travel speed • Alternate direction each round

• Adjust sprayer as canopy grows through the season • Check spray coverage Before the start of the 2017/18 season each case study had potential improvements identified and were provided with technical support and training in areas relating to powdery mildew control. Assessments were then repeated at the end of the 2017/18 season. Results from the end of the 2017/18 season showed that powdery mildew bunch infection levels decreased for nine out of 10 case study vineyards. One vineyard had no powdery mildew infection in either season. The case studies made numerous small practice changes between the seasons, however, the vineyards that showed substantial


reductions in powdery mildew infection rates had three key practices they had adjusted in common: • Improved sprayer setup and operation • Correct use of adjuvant • Correct use of single site fungicides. The knowledge gathered in these case studies further supports the findings of the

powdery mildew control research undertaken by NZW. The industry can be confident that when best practice is followed powdery mildew is a manageable disease (using currently available chemistry). Those growers who had previously felt they were following best practice but still had issues, areas for improvement were

identified in every case, and, when corrected resulted in reduced infection level. The key advice to ensure effective powdery mildew control is: • Keep your canopy open • Have your sprayer setup and operated correctly • Coverage is essential.

Test with water sensitive papers • Adjust chemical and water application rates for row width and canopy size • Add a wetter to all sulphur applications • Alternate single site fungicides with sulphur immediately pre-flowering to PBC.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   141


Developing surveillance tools for monitoring inoculum dispersal of grapevine trunk diseases Eline van Zijll de Jong1 and Mark Sosnowski2 1 Linnaeus Laboratory 2 South Australian Research & Development Institute mark.sosnowski@sa.gov.au 16-102 EUTYPA AND botryosphaeria dieback (ED and BD), caused by fungal species of the Diatrypaceae and Botryosphaeriaceae, respectively, are major grapevine trunk diseases (GTDs) worldwide, causing significant yield and quality reduction. Petri disease (PD) is another important GTD of young vineyards, which is caused by species of the Togniniaceae. The spores of ED and BD pathogens are the primary inoculum infecting grapevine pruning wounds, with PD pathogen spores also able to infect through pruning wounds. These spores are generally dispersed by rain splash but can travel greater distances depending on wind speed. Conflicting data from overseas indicate the need for further investigation of the spore dispersal patterns of GTD pathogens for specific climatic environments. To date, data on the spore dispersal of these pathogens for New Zealand is limited to BD in the Canterbury region, so monitoring of other regions and pathogens is necessary to cover the breadth of different environments and diseases. This will assist in determining the timing of spore release by GTD pathogens throughout the growing season, and assist in optimising the critical timing of pruning and wound

142   // 

protection for GTD management. Spore traps are widely used for volumetric collection of airborne particles such as fungal spores. Previous studies on GTD spore dispersal from other countries have relied primarily on conventional techniques like microscopy and culturing of microorganisms on artificial media to identify the trapped spores. These techniques are time consuming, and are limited in accuracy and sensitivity in detecting these pathogens from environmental samples. In recent years, however, molecular techniques have been reported to be useful for detecting pathogens from different environmental samples because they are rapid and more sensitive than conventional techniques. Quantitative real-time PCR (qPCR) is now commonly used to detect airborne inoculum of different plant pathogens. The objective of this study is to develop of molecular tools based on qPCR that can detect and quantify GTD pathogens from the environment. These tools will allow both accurate detection and quantification of GTD pathogen inoculum from samples collected in Burkard spore traps deployed in wine regions of

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

Figure 1: Fungal spore traps deployed in Hawke’s Bay (above) and Marlborough (below)

New Zealand with differing climates.

Development of molecular protocol

Spores are sampled from the air in the Burkard spore trap onto a sticky tape. The first step in identifying these spores using a molecular approach, requires an effective means

of extracting DNA from the spores adhering to the tape. Many of the existing protocols are complex and time-consuming, often requiring hazardous chemicals and specialised equipment. A simple DNA extraction protocol that is commercially available for qPCR analysis of yeasts and other fungi, was found to be


Figure 2. Occurrence of Eurtypa dieback pathogen spores in trap samples from Hawkes Bay on days with or without precipitation.

effective for isolating DNA from spore tape samples. Spiking experiments where pieces of tape were artificially inoculated with different quantities of spores, demonstrated that consistent yields of DNA template suitable for qPCR was extracted from the different fungal species. Once DNA is extracted from the spore tape, diagnostic qPCR tests are used to detect and quantify the levels of potential GTD pathogens. Because six closely related species are associated with BD in New Zealand vineyards and different fungal species are associated with ED (Eutypa lata) and PD (Phaeomoniella chlamydospora), specific tests are required for each of the disease groups. Existing qPCR tests developed as part of another NZW-funded project were available but to test for each of the target pathogens, six separate reactions were required. In order to reduce costs, new qPCR tests were developed to detect all of the BD pathogens in a single reaction and the other two fungal species in a second reaction. The qPCR test for ED and PD pathogens, when tested against target and

non-target species present in grapevine, were shown to only detect the target species. The quantity of DNA detected by qPCR was demonstrated to be related to the number of spores applied to the tape in spiking experiments, following an approximate log linear relationship. The limit of detection was one spore. The qPCR test for BD pathogens was, based on its performance, only suitable for detecting presence or absence.

Spore trapping

Two volumetric Burkard spore traps (Figure 1) were deployed in 2017, one in Hawke’s Bay (April) and another in Marlborough (August). A total of 155 spore tape samples collected daily from the Hawkes Bay site during the 2017 pruning season (April-September) were analysed by real-time PCR and 55% tested positive for one or more of the target fungi. The ED pathogen was detected more frequently than BD pathogen species (45% compared to 23%, respectively). The occurrence of the PD pathogen was rare (4%). Only low levels of the different fungi were

Figure 3. Occurrence of Eutypa dieback spores in trap samples from Marlborough on days with or without precipitation.

detected (<25 spores per sample). The pathogens were usually detected when temperatures were >5°C. The ED pathogen was more frequently detected on days with rain than without rain (Figure 2). Of the 78 spore tape samples collected daily from the Marlborough site starting from the end of the 2017 pruning season (August-October), 74% tested positive for one or more of the target fungi by real-time PCR. BD pathogens (50%) and the ED pathogen (49%) occurred more frequently than the PD pathogen (17%). For each of the target fungi, the number of spores per sample was low (<100 spores). Temperatures were usually >10°C when the fungi were detected. The occurrence of the EDpathogen was positively associated with rain (Figure 3).

Conclusions

Until recently spore dispersal patterns of fungi associated with ED, BD and other trunk diseases have primarily relied on microscopy and plating techniques. In this study molecular diagnostic tools have been developed for the detection of fungal

spores collected using an automated volumetric Burkard spore sampler. Spores of BD and ED pathogens were regularly detected during the pruning season. The quantity of spores detected appeared to be low, but even low quantities of spores can lead to infection. Continued monitoring and analysis of spore tape over several years will provide more information regarding inoculum levels. Spores were detected on more than half of the days during the pruning season, and early indications that in both regions the release of ED pathogen spores was associated with rain events. In comparison to the other species, the threat of infection of vines by the PD pathogen through pruning wounds was minimal. This research is ongoing and further development is required for detecting BD pathogens, to improve the specificity and quantitative properties of the test, whilst maintaining cost-effective protocols. Spore traps will continue to monitor for GTD pathogens for the duration of the project and samples will be analysed and results reported in future articles.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   143


Reducing herbicide use in New Zealand vineyards Mark Krasnow 15-106 IN-ROW WEED control is necessary in all vineyards. Undervine plants compete with vines for nutrients and water, and they can grow into the canopy, shading vines and negatively affecting fruit health. In a vast majority of New Zealand vineyards weed control is done with the use of multiple herbicide sprays. However, with the emergence and spread of glyphosate resistant weeds in New Zealand, and with ever tightening restrictions on residues from export countries, reducing herbicide use in our vineyards will be of value to the industry as a whole. The first herbicide spray is put on vineyards at or before budburst to protect from frost and to eliminate early season competition from weeds as the vine’s canopy develops and fruitset is achieved. Most vineyards follow up this first spray with 1-2 more during the season to prevent any weeds from becoming established under the vines during fruit development and maturation. It is unclear whether, or how much, allowing undervine plants to grow during this time will affect the growth and productivity of the vines. To investigate this, a multi-year project was started in the 2016-17 season in three Sauvignon Blanc vineyards in Marlborough and three Merlot vine-

144   // 

yards in Hawke’s Bay. The vineyards are divided in half and the control is sprayed the same as the rest of the vineyard. The other half receives the first herbicide spray, but any weed control after that is done using an undervine mower or scarafier-type cultivator. As can be seen from the photos, the undervine area from the two halves of the vineyard looks very different late in the season, with much more vegetation under the reduced herbicide treatment. There was evidence from two of the three Sauvignon Blanc vineyards that allowing this vegetation reduced vine growth in the 2017-18 season, as evidenced by the consistently higher percentage of canopy gaps in HRSB1 and HRSB2 (Table 1). However, the differences, while statistically significant, were quite small. There was no evidence of devigouration from reducing herbicide either year from any of the Merlot vineyards or the third Sauvignon Blanc vineyard. At harvest, however, even in the vineyards that had more canopy gaps, there was no consistent negative effect on yield or bunch number from reducing herbicides by 50-67% in either year of the study so far (Table 2). There was also no consistent negative effect on juice Brix, suggesting that allowing

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018

A photo of the control treatment in the HRSB1 vineyard a few weeks before harvest. This treatment received three herbicide sprays during the 2017-18 season.

A photo of the reduced herbicide treatment in the HRSB1 vineyard taken at the same time as the control. This vineyard used a DouCut mower three times for weed control after the initial herbicide spray.


gradual reduction in productivity or health of the vines, and this will be assessed in the coming years of the project, which is slated to run through 2021. In most cases, the reduced herbicide treatment required one extra pass to control weeds compared with the herbicide control, slightly driving up the cost of weed control in these vineyards.

undervine vegetation to become established late in the season doesn’t impair ripening. There was, however, a consistent lowering of juice YAN in the reduced herbicide treatment (Table 3), however this can easily be addressed by fertilisation in the vineyard or juice nitrogen addition in the winery. It remains to be seen whether reducing herbicide year after year will result in a

Vineyard HRSB1

HRSB2

HRSB3

HRM1

HRM2

HRM3

Variety SB

SB

SB

Merlot

Merlot

Merlot

Treatment

Flowering

That said, the absence of residues on the fruit and the fact that nonchemical methods also control herbicide resistant weeds may make the extra cost worthwhile to growers. The results thus far from the trial are exciting, and suggest that we can dramatically reduce our chemical use and fruit chemical residues, and at the same time slow the

Veraison

Harvest

Flowering

spread of herbicide resistant weeds, or the development of resistance in new weed species, by simply mixing in nonchemical weed control methods alongside traditional herbicide use. This can be done without dramatically driving up the cost of farming and provides a framework for more thoughtful and less chemically intensive farming of grapes in New Zealand.

Veraison

Harvest

Control

14.8%

4.6%

7.7% b

7.3% b

2.7% b

2.2% b

Reduced

14.0%

7.8%

13.4% a

16.8% a

6.9% a

5.3% a

Control

3.9%

4.3%

2.9%

3.6%

1.3% b

1.4% b

Reduced

4.9%

3.9%

4.2%

5.0%

2.2% a

2.5% a

Control

25.2% a

10.7%

16.2%

26.7%

15.5%

19.5%

Reduced

14.4% b

6.9%

8.5%

25.4%

13.8%

16.6%

Control

19.2%

10.0%

12.8%

10.3%

13.8%

14.8%

Reduced

19.1%

8.2%

11.9%

8.9%

14.2%

14.3%

Control

42.3%

11.5%

20.5%

42.5%

11.6%

15.6%

Reduced

48.9%

12.9%

19.7%

44.1%

14.2%

18.5%

Control

26.6%

25.9% a

26.7% a

16.0%

9.0%

12.0%

Reduced

19.6%

12.1% b

14.9% b

14.1%

8.3%

14.8%

Table 1: Percent canopy gaps from the first two seasons of the herbicide reduction experiment. Data are means of ten vines. Bold values with different letters denote significant differences at the 95% confidence level.

2016-17 Season Vineyard

Variety

Treatment

Bunch number per vine

2017-18 Season

Yield (kg/ vine)

Bunch number per vine

Yield (kg/ vine)

HRSB1

SB

Control

48

5.71

Reduced

50

4.95

53.9

7.26

HRSB2

SB

Control

74

11.8

60.5

10.05

Reduced

72

10.84

62.3

10.68

Control

71

14.49

69.2

13.82

Reduced

80

15.62

70.2

13.37

HRSB3 HRM1 HRM2 HRM3

SB Merlot Merlot Merlot

50.4

6.56

Control

37

4.82

37.3

6.02

Reduced

38

5.30

42.1

6.87

Control

55.6a

8.63a

37.4

7.51

Reduced

44.2b

6.83b

38.4

6.27

Control

29

3.28

25.9

3.95

Reduced

27

3.24

26.8

3.59

Table 2: Yield and bunch number from the first two seasons of the herbicide reduction experiment. Data are means of ten vines. Bold values with different letters denote significant differences at the 95% confidence level.

NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018  //   145


2016-17 Season Vineyard HRSB1

HRSB2

HRSB3

HRM1

HRM2

Variety SB

SB

SB

Merlot

Merlot

Treatment

Merlot

Sample 2

Harvest

Sample 1

Sample 2

Harvest

Control

280

237

233

247

258

311

Reduced

277

212

214

214

247

250

Control

395

258 a

253 a

216

211

262 a

Reduced

378

214 b

184 b

217

194

187 b

Control

298

202

189

150

144

175 b

Reduced

330

234

224

200

201

209 a

Control

218

265

307

202

231

189

Reduced

231

281

290

209

229

169

Control

106

255 a

248 a

118

135

140

99

217 b

201 b

92

97

106

Control

238

228

219

255

214 a

168 a

Reduced

244

216

203

241

177 b

137 b

Reduced HRM3

Sample 1

2017-18 Season

Table 3: Juice yeast available nitrogen (YAN) over ripening from the first two seasons of the herbicide reduction experiment. Data are means of five 100 berry samples. Bold values with different letters denote significant differences at the 95% confidence level.

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NZ WINEGROWER  AUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2018


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Deutzâ&#x20AC;&#x201C;Fahr has a long standing history of producing innovative and reliable tractors for the specialised tractor sector. This reputation was well known in New Zealand and once again Deutz-Fahr is able to provide a solution for your orchard, vineyard and specialist needs. Introducing the Agroplus range of tractors, offering a full spectrum of models that suit this specialised sector including units suitable for a range of row spacingâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s, canopy heights and ever increasing hydraulic demands. The current Agroplus range is broken into three specific models, Agroplus S/F/V Series, Keyline

stop

& go system

and Ecoline. Each model appealing to a specific sector of this industry. Low and narrow (1.16m), the durable Agroplus V is the most compact model of the three, the Agroplus F is the widest (1.43m) to offer maximum grip together with the benefits of limited size and bristling with outstanding high tech features, the Agroplus S is the most technical (1.26m). The Agroplus Keyline and Ecoline range are specialised units that are built specifically to master the height and width restrictions of crops such as kiwi fruit. Equipped with simple

kiwi fruit specialist

and innovative mechanical controls, all-wheel braking with wet disc brakes, these tractors are designed to tackle strenuous tasks, row after row. Get in touch with your local Power Farming Dealer today and try the Agroplus range for yourself.

0800 801 888 | deutztractors.co.nz | Fb deutzNZ

Terms and conditions apply. Prices valid until 31/07/18 or while stocks last. Standard specs may vary between models, contact your local Power Farming Dealer for more information

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NZ Winegrower August/September 2018  

NZ Winegrower August/September 2018

NZ Winegrower August/September 2018  

NZ Winegrower August/September 2018