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ISSUE NO. 283 / JULY 2018



Photo: Jim Tannock



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14 Appellation Marlborough


Editorial From the Board - Nick Entwistle The Good Stuff - Succession Planning


Industry News


ANZ Wine Happenings

Cover: Edward Macdonald had to earn his stripes before taking up a role at Hunter’s Wines says his aunt, Jane Hunter, in this month’s succession planning feature on pg 20. Photo Jim Tannock.

Wine Appellation Marlborough Wine (AMW) is a timely evolution for a major international wine region, says chairman Ivan Sutherland.


20 Moving Forward

Marlborough has New Zealand’s oldest population, its fastest ageing population, and plenty of growers looking to ease back on work and investment. Passing on the family land is a complicated business, so we talk to winegrowers with a proactive approach to succession.

26 Tomorrow’s Tohu

Wakatū has a 500-year plan when it comes to succession. Winepress asks CEO Kerensa Johnston about being “intergenerational thinkers”.


Winepress July 2018 / 1

Marlborough’s Viticulture Specialist Dedicated to providing a competitive and professional approach to find the best buyer for your property with market knowledge, network and marketing that makes getting the best result possible. For a no obligation discussion about buying, selling or leasing, talk to Andy in confidence today.

Ward 87 hectares

Tuamarina 51 hectares

Rapaura 9.4 hectares

Grovetown 8 hectares

Hawkesbury 65 hectares

Wairau Valley 220 hectares

Rapaura 16 hectares

Grovetown 9.5 hectares

Awatere Valley 190 hectares

Fairhall 8 hectares

Rapaura 9 hectares

Dillons Point 8 hectares


2 / Winepress July 2018

General Manager: Marcus Pickens 03 577 9299 Editor: Sophie Preece 027 308 4455 Advertising: Harriet Wadworth 03 577 9299 Wine Marlborough Board: Ben Ensor Callum Linklater Jack Glover Michael Wentworth Nick Entwistle Simon Bishell Stuart Dudley (Deputy Chair) Tom Trolove (Chair) Tracy Johnston

Printed by: Blenheim Print Ltd 03 578 1322

Disclaimer: The views and articles that are expressed and appear in Winepress are entirely those of contributors and in no way reflect the policy of the Marlborough Winegrowers. Any advice given, implied or suggested should be considered on its merits, and no responsibility can be taken for problems arising from the use of such information.

From the Editor Marlborough’s wine industry might be young, but many of its owners are not, with plenty of smaller vineyards and wineries run by couples aged 50 to 70 years old. A succession planning feature in this month’s edition looks at an “exit planning bubble” in New Zealand, as baby boomers look to step back from their businesses. That’s certainly the case in Marlborough wine, with some owners grappling to create a plan for what comes next, whether that’s finding a way to keep their land in family ownership or selling up and getting out. Leasing has become a popular choice, because it offers some “breathing space” around those decisions, and satisfies multinational wine companies’ desire for growth, without having to get through the Overseas Investment Authority, says Wine Marlborough’s Vance Kerslake. However, it’s just one of a myriad of options, and Winepress talks to industry members about the challenges and opportunities of keeping the land in the family. We also talk to Wakatū Chief Executive Kerensa Johnston about the company’s intergenerational approach. “We look at the long-term future for our vineyards and wine company in the same way that we look at all aspects of our business, which is through the lens of our 500-year plan, Te Pae Tawhiti, or the long horizon,” she says. That’s partly about looking after the land, and partly about looking after the people, with Associate Director and Manager Programmes, to make sure there’s a smooth succession of governance. Another programme looking to future success is Appellation Marlborough Wine (AMW), which was launched last month, with 36 signed up members. Chairman Ivan Sutherland says the brand, which will certify members’ wines if they are 100% Marlborough fruit, New Zealand bottled, and picked within set cropping parameters, is a timely evolution for a major international wine region. “It’s a regional brand that the wine buying public of the world can see and trust.” This edition also checks out the Silver Secateurs Pruning competition, a celebration of the often thankless winter vine work, and recognition of the skills it takes. “Those guys are out in every weather condition imaginable, and without them we wouldn’t have a bloody industry,” says James Jones, urging the industry to get along and support the day. See you there!

“Winepress talks to industry members about the challenges and opportunities of keeping the land in the family.”


Winepress July 2018 / 3


CELEBRATING SUCCESS can be a struggle for New Zealanders. In a country where tall poppy syndrome is so deeply ingrained in our national psyche, celebrating the success of others, let alone ourselves, is something we find extremely difficult. It’s a weird conundrum, given our propensity for exploration, innovation, ‘number 8 wire’ can-do attitude and tenacious competitiveness. The rapid growth and global recognition of the New Zealand wine industry is incredible and is something of which we should all feel supremely proud. But what should we be celebrating, and how should we be celebrating it? Ultimately it boils down to what we view as success. Is it having the most vineyards, the highest yields per hectare, the most awarded wines, the most profitable businesses or the largest exports? Or is it having the most sustainable vineyards, the best social practices, the most collaborative communities or the most cutting-edge innovation? The diversity within our industry means that defining success and celebrating it to the satisfaction of all is a challenging undertaking, one that ultimately relies on what we as members and consumers value when reflecting on New Zealand wine. The traditional method of measuring and celebrating our success has been through wine shows and awards ceremonies, which have provided a vehicle to improve wine quality, and an easily identifiable way for companies to promote their wines to consumers. But as the number of wine competitions has grown over time, has the appetite for such awards faded? Do they still hold the same 4 / Winepress July 2018

relevance for producers and consumers? This is an increasingly important question, at a time when purchasing trends are shifting towards increased demand for sustainable credibility and provenance over awards and expert review. Air New Zealand’s decision to withdraw their involvement from the Air New Zealand Wine Awards after 31 years of sponsorship came as a shock to many, however, the change has allowed New Zealand Winegrowers to take a step back and review what its members value in terms of events, and what the focus should be for the future. PwC was commissioned to undertake a strategic review asking growers and wine companies two key questions: ‘How should we celebrate success in the industry?’; and, ‘are events such as the Air New Zealand Wine Awards still fit for purpose?’ The findings of the strategic review were published in April and have been used as a guide for New Zealand Winegrowers as it rebuilds its events programme. The main findings of the report were that despite the differing opinions across the industry as to how success should be celebrated, the desire to be more inclusive and relevant was by far the most common theme. As was the need to evolve the current wine awards, to better recognise the diversity and breadth of industry strengths and membership type. As such, the wine competition and awards component of the Bragato National Conference has been removed, to allow the newly rebranded New Zealand Wine of

the Year competition to shine as New Zealand’s premier wine awards event. The change will also allow the Bragato conference to expand its scope from being primarily research and innovation based, to include sessions from other areas including marketing, sustainability and advocacy. The PwC report also emphasised the need to continue to celebrate the success of our future industry leaders. High membership satisfaction ratings for both the Bayer Young Viticulturalist of the Year and the Tonnellerie de Mercurey Young Winemaker of the Year competitions shows the relevance and importance of these events and should help solidify these initiatives within New Zealand Winegrowers strategic plan going forward. At a local level, 2018 will see the Marlborough Wine Show fall under the stewardship of Wine Marlborough, with the view of growing this event into a broader celebration of local industry success. Celebrating not only our award-wining wines, but our growers and winemakers, our marketers and salespeople, our scientists and innovators, and our pioneers and future leaders. It’s an exciting proposition, one that will help solidify Marlborough’s reputation as New Zealand’s premier wine region. Celebrating success can be a struggle for New Zealanders, but the New Zealand wine industry is going to make sure we give it a good crack.

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MET REPORT Table 1: Blenheim Weather Data – June 2018 June June 2018 June Period June 2018 Compared LTA of LTA 2017 to LTA GDD’s for month -Max/Min¹ 11.6 57% 20.4 (1996-2017) 6.1 GDD’s for month – Mean² 25.8 73% 35.5 (1996-2017) 24.5 Growing Degree Days Total July 17 to June 18-Max/Min¹ 1637.% 117% 1402.8 (1996-2017) 1410.0 July 17 to June 18 – Mean² 1680.8 115% 1463.9 (1996-2017) 1465.4 Mean Maximum (°C) 13.5 -0.3°C 13.8 (1986-2017) 14.1 Mean Minimum (°C) 3.7 +0.2 3.5 (1986-2017) 3.5 Mean Temp (°C) 8.6 -0.1°C 8.7 (1986-2017) 8.8 Ground Frosts (<= -1.0°C) 13 1 more 12.0 (1986-2017) 10 Air Frosts (<0.0°C) 5 equal 5.1 (1986-2017) 1 Sunshine hours 150.9 99.7% 151.4 (1986-2017) 162.7 Sunshine hours – lowest 91.8 1981 Sunshine hours – highest 205.2 1959 Sunshine hours total – 2018 1218.4 98.5% 1236.7 (1986-2017) 1266.3 Rainfall (mm) 39.4 59% 67.3 (1986-2017) 18.4 Rainfall (mm) – lowest 8.0 1974 Rainfall (mm) – highest 154.9 1943 Rainfall total (mm) – 2018 492.2 162% 304.1 (1986-2017) 343.0 Evapotranspiration – mm 32.5 98% 33.2 (1996-2017) 33.5 Avg. Daily Windrun (km) 209.5 93% 224.5 (1996-2017) 181.3 Mean soil temp – 10cm 7.2 +1.3°C 5.9 (1986-2017) 7.9 Mean soil temp – 30cm 9.2 +1.0°C 8.2 (1986-2017) 9.7 1 ¹GDD’s Max/Min are calculated from absolute daily maximum and minimum temperatures ²GDD’s Mean are calculated from average hourly temperatures June 2018 mean temperature, sunshine hours and number of frosts were close to average. Rainfall and wind-run were well below average. Temperature and Frosts Blenheim’s mean temperature in June was 8.6°C, 0.1°C below the long-term

average (LTA). The average daily maximum temperature of 13.5°C was 0.3°C below the LTA, and the average daily minimum temperature of 3.7°C was 0.2°C above the LTA. The second and third weeks of June were slightly warmer than the other weeks as the weather was very overcast during this period (Table 2). June 2018 recorded 13 ground frosts and five air frosts, a higher number than in 2016 and 2017, but the same number as were recorded in 2015 and also very close to the LTA. The coldest ground frost in June 2018 was -5.0°C recorded on 7th June. However, the coldest morning of June 2018 was actually the 23rd, with a ground frost of -4.7°C and an air frost of -1.3°C. Mean temperature for the 12-months July 2017 to June 2018 The 11 months from July 2017 to May 2018 were all above average in Blenheim. June slightly spoiled the 12-month period coming in slightly below average (Figure 1). However, the mean temperature for the 12-months July 2017 to June 2018 of 14.01°C was the warmest July to June on record for the 86 years 1932-33 to 2017-18. Rainfall Blenheim recorded 39.4 mm rain in June, 59% of the LTA. Total rainfall for the six months January to June 2018 is 492.2 mm, 162% of the LTA.

Table 2: Weekly temperatures, rainfall, sunshine and frosts recorded in Blenheim during June 2018 Total Total Mean Mean Rainfall Sunshine Ground Air Max Min Mean Diff (mm) (hours) Frosts Frosts 1-7 June 12.7 4.4 8.5 -0.2 3.6 18.4 2 1 8-14 June 14.2 5.7 10.0 +1.3 14.0 32.2 2 0 15-21 June 13.7 4.4 9.1 +0.3 21.8 32.6 1 0 22-28 June 13.3 1.4 7.4 -1.3 0.0 50.3 6 3 29-30 June 13.9 0.0 6.9 -1.8 0.0 17.5 2 1 1-30 June 13.5 3.7 8.6 -0.1 39.4 150.9 13 5 LTA 1986-2016 13.8 3.5 8.7 67.3 151.4 12.0 5.1 6 / Winepress July 2018

Figure 1: Blenheim mean temperatures for the 12 months July 2017 to June 2018 compared to the long-term average

Had the overcast weather continued for the whole month June would have recorded a very low sunshine total. However, the final nine days of June had fairly clear skies and 67.8 hours sunshine, or 7.53 hours per day, was recorded. Total sunshine for the first six months of 2018 was 1218.4 hours, 18.3 hours below the LTA. Wind Average daily wind-run for June 2018 was 209.5 km, with an average wind speed of 8.7 km/hr, well below the LTA wind-run for June of 224.5 km and wind speed of 9.4 km/hr.

Figure 2: Blenheim rainfall for the 12 months July 2017 to June 2018 compared to the long-term average

Rainfall for the 12 months July 2017 to June 2018 It is interesting to contrast the 12-month July to June rainfall over the last four years, and in comparison with the LTA rainfall of 636 mm. July 2017 to June 2018 = 740.6 mm (116% of LTA) July 2016 to June 2017 = 608.6 mm (96% of LTA) July 2015 to June 2016 = 491.2 mm (77% of LTA) July 2014 to June 2015 = 347.4 mm (55% of LTA) Monthly rainfall over the 12 months July 2017 to June 2018 was highly variable. Four of the 12 months recorded well below average rainfall as indicated in Figure 2 (October, November, December and June). Three months recorded well above

average rainfall (January, February and May). Five months recorded close to average rainfall (July, August, September, March and April). With low rainfall from October to December 2017 it appeared as if Marlborough was heading into a summer drought. However, that was not to be as the skies opened in early January 2018, followed by February 2018 being the wettest on record, so it turned into a very wet, but warm summer. Sunshine Blenheim recorded 150.9 hours sunshine in June 2018, 99.7% of the LTA. The first three weeks of June were generally fairly overcast with only 83.1 hours sunshine recorded, or an average of 3.96 hours per day. The LTA sunshine for June is 5.05 hours per day.

Wind-run and wind speed for the 12 months July 2017 to June 2018 In all the years that Met Report has appeared in Winepress little attention has been given to summarising wind other than the average daily windrun in km, and the average hourly wind speed in km/hr. Occasionally the maximum wind speed may have been mentioned when Blenheim has had strong wind gusts that may have caused damage. However, Met Report has never summarised the wind-run and wind speed by compass direction. As with all the meteorological parameters that are recorded by most of our weather stations, wind-run, wind speed and wind direction are all summarised at both daily and hourly intervals. The anemometer and wind vane at the Blenheim weather station are mounted on top of a tower at 10 metres height. This is the standard international height for recording wind. The vineyard weather stations that Plant & Food Research operates do not have 10 metre towers, so wind speed and direction are recorded at approximately 1.5 metres height. This lower height is more relevant to a grape canopy but readings cannot be compared with other international wind observations. The following graphs summarise wind as recorded at the Blenheim weather station at 10 metres height. Figure 3 displays the total wind-run (km) summarised by wind

Winepress July 2018 / 7

direction for the 12-month period July 2017 to June 2018. Figure 4 displays the average wind speed (km/hr) by direction for the same 12 month period. The average wind speed over the whole year was 9.31 km/hr. Given this average wind speed of 9.31 km/hr and 8760 hours in a year, the total windrun for the year was 81,557 km. If the

wind blew equally from all 16 compass directions then we would expect there to have been 5097.3 km of wind-run from each direction. However, Figure 3 indicates that the wind-run in Blenheim is heavily biased towards three westerly directions: NW, WNW and W. In fact 56.8% of total wind-run over the past 12-months came from

Figure 3: Total wind-run (km) summarised by wind direction, for the Blenheim weather station, over the 12 months July 2017 to June 2018

these three westerly directions, while these three directions only comprise 18.75% of the 16 compass directions. We can also see that there is also a reasonable amount of wind-run from the ENE and E. When we examine the average wind-speed (km/hr) by wind direction (Figure 4) we can see that wind speed is much more evenly spread around the compass directions. In order to save space I havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t included a graph of total hours of wind-run by wind direction. However, you can derive from Figures 3 and 4 that with the predominance of wind-run from three westerly directions and only slightly stronger winds from these directions, that the wind must blow from these westerly directions for much longer periods of time than for the other compass directions. Total duration of wind from the NW, WNW and W was 4480 hours over the 12-month period, or 51% of the total hours in the year. Hence the total hours of wind duration by direction graph (not included) is of very similar shape to the total windrun graph. Rob Agnew Plant & Food Research â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Marlborough Research Centre

Figure 4: Average wind speed (km/hr) summarised by wind direction, for the Blenheim weather station, over the 12 months July 2017 to June 2018

8 / Winepress July 2018

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Bed Boost Region responds to growth forecast MARLBOROUGH IS on the way to having another 750 beds for seasonal labour, according to a new report on the region’s growth. The Marlborough District Council’s National Policy Statement on Urban Development Capacity says the region has New Zealand’s highest forecast growth in labour demand, with a 35% increase in demand for Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme (RSE) workers over the next two years, and 3,600 extra employees anticipated by May 2020. That will put pressure on accommodation, but council has approved resource consents to increase capacity by over 750 beds in central Blenheim and Seddon, the report says. Wine Marlborough’s Advocacy Manager Vance Kerslake is happy to see the wine industry’s response to forecast growth, with investment in purpose-built seasonal worker accommodation. “The industry couldn’t exist at this size and continue

to grow without seasonal workers, and it’s fantastic to see the industry looking after its own and providing solutions to our accommodation challenges.” The industry now needs council and property developers to deliver some affordable housing for key workers, he says. “Covenants on the new housing developments mean you cannot build affordable housing there. The large, expensive new houses that are being built are beyond the means of key workers in the wine industry, not to mention teachers, nurses and key workers in other industries.” The quarterly monitoring report measures housing and business development market indicators for the quarter October to December 2017 and provides historic trends over the past 10 years. It shows that in June 2017 Marlborough’s resident population had grown by 1.5% to an estimated 46,200, and there’s a projected increase of 2,500 over the next 25 years.

Marlborough Mayor John Leggett says the report measures trends in demographics, house prices and rents, affordability, and demand and supply for residential and business development, including seasonal worker accommodation. “We need to ensure that our planning regulations are not unintentionally constraining urban development,” he says. “The information in the report will help us monitor trends over time and inform council’s planning for growth in the housing and commercial market, and identify how much land is needed to meet that growth.” Council’s Strategic Planning and Economic Development Manager Neil Henry says it’s important council is up to speed on urban development activity, “so we can provide sufficient zoned land to meet housing and business market demand”.


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A Transformative Decade Ten years at the helm of Wine Marlborough WHEN MARCUS Pickens arrived at Wine Marlborough in 2008, he thought the region’s vineyard growth was complete. Ten years on, the General Manager realises just how wrong he was. “I look back now and think, ‘I can say I have been here and certainly witnessed a transformation - it hasn’t slowed up’.” That wasn’t the only surprise for the new GM, who had spent 15 years working in wine branding and retail in Auckland before moving to the “heart” of New Zealand’s wine industry with his very young family. The job interview had been about putting Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc on the world stage, and diversifying the region’s offering, and Marcus looked forward to polishing the brand and honing its international reputation. But instead he was firefighting from day one, having arrived a month after the massive 2008 vintage, as the global financial crisis began to bite. Prices

dropped and the industry became agitated, leading many to get on the phone to the shiny new GM, with his staff of one and a half. “I was thrown into it. It was complete immersion,” he says. “It meant I couldn’t do the job I was employed to do. It was about communication, PR and firefighting. It was about leadership - someone fronting up and being accountable.” He was communicating with banks, investors, accountants, “and trying to offer what support I could to people in a lot of uncertainty.” It was a baptism of fire that he can appreciate, a decade on. And the challenges have certainly continued, with constant expansion of vineyard land and the associated pressure on growers, wineries, water, labour, accommodation and reputation. Meanwhile, Wine Marlborough has continued to deliver an array of “exceptional” events, headlined by the

Marcus Pickens at Wine Marlborough’s Sauvignon Blanc Day celebration at Arbour. Photo Richard Briggs

12 / Winepress July 2018

Marlborough Wine & Food Festival. “I am really proud of how we have managed to shift the needle on that,” Marcus says. “Moving the festival from a drinking event to a world class experience that Marlborough should be really proud of. It is such a strong brand.” The past 10 years have involved working with “outstanding people” on the Marlborough Winegrowers board, current and previous workmates, and wider industry colleagues and he’s enjoyed seeing Wine Marlborough evolve to meet its members’ needs. “There are so many challenges that Wine Marlborough gets in front of. That’s been the change - the scope of work we do. We are not just an events and promotions company.” A strategic review is currently underway to ensure that flexibility continues, to make Marlborough “truly great”, he says. Over the next 10 years Marcus would like to see Marlborough wine rise in value and reputation, without triggering the risks that sit around every turn. “Not natural disasters, because they are out of our control, but the reputational risks are massive. I will be doing everything I can to avoid or mitigate those.” For all the pressure (“I have to thank my very tolerant family”) there are very few jobs in the wine industry as good as the one he’s got, says Marcus. “It suits me. I am a person that likes representing people and working hard for them. It’s in my DNA I suppose.”

Silver Service The Silver Secateurs pruning competition should be an industry celebration THE QUALITY of Marlborough’s vineyard pruning has leapt up in recent years, thanks largely to the growing skills of seasonal workers from the Pacific Islands, says James Jones, who was behind the Sharpen Up pruning guide and is a stalwart of the Wine Marlborough Silver Secateurs pruning competition. “I think it’s an amazing story for the industry.” James says there are now highly skilled Recognised Seasonal Employer (RSE) scheme vineyard workers who have returned several years in a row. “So you have these experienced people coming back, training and supervising and really lifting the quality.” The Silver Secateurs, which is on August 26, sets the “benchmark” for where the industry should be heading, and is good recognition of winter work in Marlborough vines, he says. “It’s all about celebrating what is happening out in the vines, because it can be a thankless task. Those guys are out in every weather condition imaginable, and without them we wouldn’t have a bloody industry.” James has noticed a quality shift in pruning jobs over recent years, after a drop around 10 years ago. At that stage the new RSE scheme was bringing an inexperienced workforce into the vines, while the global financial crisis

and a downturn in the wine industry meant many people were stripping costs out of their business, he says. “The quality of pruning went out the door and it’s only just coming back to where it used to be.” He hopes the Silver Secateurs will grow to become a “huge celebration” of the industry’s winter season, with wine companies and private growers turning up to cheer on the gangs and individuals responsible for the industry’s success. “It is a great atmosphere and recognises their toil and hard work, while rewarding the best of the best.” The Silver Secateurs pruning competition is on at Yealands Estate vineyard at Grovetown on Sunday, August 26, with entries closing on August 6. Prizegiving will be held at the Giesen Sports and Events Centre in Renwick from 6pm on August 26.

Photos by Richard Briggs

Winepress July 2018 / 13

Appellation Marlborough Producers stand together to protect Marlborough brand APPELLATION MARLBOROUGH Wine (AMW) is a timely evolution for a major international wine region, says chairman Ivan Sutherland in the wake of its launch last month. The AMW initiative will certify members’ wines if they are 100% Marlborough fruit, New Zealand bottled, and picked within set cropping parameters, to help protect the reputation of quality producers, he says. “It’s a regional brand that the wine buying public of the world can see and trust.” There are 36 members signed up to the AMW brand, with more interested in getting on board, says deputy chairman John Forrest, who attempted to launch a similar programme with Ivan in 2011. While it didn’t get off the ground then, the proliferation of bulk Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc in the years since, and the impact its “adulteration” could have on Marlborough’s reputation, had provided the imperative, he says. “I see no alternative but to do what we have done.” Producers at the launch were told the primary aim of the AMW is to protect the integrity, authenticity and brand value of wines produced in Marlborough. “It is about fostering the good reputation of the region’s wines and establishing standards and criteria to enhance this.” To bear the AMW brand, members have to ensure the wine is made from grapes grown entirely in Marlborough and bottled in New Zealand. Ivan says the bottling stipulation is both a protection from adulteration of wine offshore and a boon to the economy. “Eighty percent of it is authenticity, but the other part 14 / Winepress July 2018

is looking after the economy of this region and this country. We believe we have a part of play in that.” According to the AMW brand criteria, the grapes must be from sustainable vineyards, certified under The AMW committee a recognised programme, and grown at “an appropriate cropping level with the prime objective of enhancing quality and the Marlborough name”. The cropping level will be set according to the season, the variety and the land, “pertinent to each separate vineyard parcel of grapes”.

“It’s a regional brand that the wine buying public of the world can see and trust.” Ivan Sutherland Ivan says the criteria have been designed to be inclusive, not exclusive, and if a wine is produced outside the set cropping level, it can be assessed

by a tasting panel with the discretion to certify. The system counts on the “honesty and integrity” of its members, but there will be random inspections and audits of certified wine, to ensure the rigour of the certification, he says. Fiona Turner of Tinpot Hut Wines, also a committee member, says in 2011 industry members may have seen bulk wine as a “blip” and hoped things would go back to normal. “But it’s here to stay. I think it’s a chunk of the market.” Cloudy Bay Estate Director Yang Shen, also an AMW committee member, says Marlborough’s wine is a “natural gift”, and the initiative is an important step to protect it. Members of AMW pay an initial fee and an ongoing levy. The initiative has also received sponsorship from Wineworks Marlborough Ltd and the Cresswell Jackson New Zealand Wine Trust.

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The Wine studio A home for handpicked fruit A TALL wall of glass shaped like a cottage links The Wine Studio’s offices with its tanks, perfectly setting the scene for this small parcel, high quality facility. The wall recognises the integral connection between marketing and winemaking, says owner and winemaker Dave Clouston. But it’s also a nod to the nature of the space, now “home” to Dave’s Two Rivers wine label, as well as Corofin, Soho, Starborough and Ward Valley. The winery, completed just in time for the 2018 vintage, meets a niche in the market, says Commercial Director Jason Yank. “There are a group of artisanal winemakers who need and have a desire for small vessels, small handpicks and interesting and intricate parcels of wine that need to be treated very individually and uniquely,” he says. “You have to give artisan winemakers a home.” Dave created Two Rivers in 2004, with plans to develop his market and distribution before investing in land and plant. By the time he and his wife Pip bought their first vineyard, Brookby Hill, in 2016, they had 10 markets for two labels - Two Rivers and Black Cottage - with Clouston and Co. recently added to the mix. When a space came up at the Cloudy Bay Industrial Park, they saw the opportunity to do things in-house. Marlborough’s huge contract winemaking facilities play an important role but can be a “bit of a nightmare too”, says Dave, who for 12 years visited his ferments in someone else’s place. “You have a stronger connection with your wine in your own home. The time spent in others’ homes was fantastic, but nothing beats doing it all under your own roof.”

16 / Winepress July 2018

He knew other smaller producers felt the same way, frustrated at booking two days in advance to see their wine, or showing distributors around a winery with someone else’s brand. “That’s why this is called The Wine Studio - it has a collective feel.” Its winemakers can use hot desks at the facility - which is Two Rivers HQ, but doesn’t have its branding, says Dave. “It’s real people making real wine.” The Wine Studio processed 700 tonnes this vintage, with its winemakers inducted and then allowed to come and go at will. It has future capacity to process 5,000 tonnes, with two-year growth plans that will enable Dave to move the rest of his Two Rivers production in and offer more space to other “Studio family members”. Meanwhile, Jason will bring in more labels. He says there’s growing awareness that Marlborough’s winery “mouth” isn’t big enough to process the increasing tonnage of fruit. While big facilities will expand that capacity with big tanks, smaller parcels may suffer, he says. “What we’ll have here is a nice facility to receive handpicked fruit and small batch processing, whilst offering some larger vessels to blend.” Dave and Jason shopped around to get the best technology and value, and have stainless steel tanks from New Zealand, Germany and China. This is the first new winery build since the 2016 Kaikoura earthquake and the tanks use the OnGuard seismic system, bolted with sacrificial fuses into 170mm thick concrete, with plans for even deeper foundations under the bigger tanks to come. As well as seeking the world’s

Dave Clouston

Jason Yank

newest technology, they looked to the ancient Greeks, bringing in amphorae - the clay pots used to make and store wine since the 7th century BC. Dave has one parcel of 2018 Sauvignon Blanc fruit split four ways, using amphorae, concrete eggs, barrel and tanks, to see how each compares. It’s about pushing boundaries while retaining the essence of Marlborough, he says. “That is what made us famous and long may it continue.” For more information, go to or contact Jason Yank on

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Winepress July 2018 / 17

Efficiency Boost Funding is available to help businesses reduce their environmental footprint SOPHIE PREECE

A “CARROT and stick” approach will reduce the environmental impact of New Zealand industries, including wine, says a sustainability consultant. Nick Meeten of Applied Energy says the carrot is found in Government funds for sustainable measures, such as electric vehicle infrastructure. He recently worked with a winery client on a successful bid for $10,000 for battery charging ports, to be used for the company’s growing fleet of electric cars, as well as by the public. “The Government can also fund, for example, up to 40% of a study to look at the feasibility of projects to save energy.” The stick is there in increasing consumer discretion over the impact of the products they buy, the rising cost of fossil fuels, and environment legislation such as the phasing out of HFC refrigerants. “I think that’s a big thing on the horizon that people are unaware of,” says Nick. Refrigerants are used in winery cooling systems, and generally are substances that either damage the ozone layer, or are super greenhouse gases. With those products now being phased out, companies need to consider whether their equipment is future proofed, says Nick. “It’s an environmental issue that might affect the lifespan of the asset.” The rising cost of fuel is another big concern for the wine industry, which he expects will result in an eventual change in Marlborough’s vineyards. Electric tractors are “on the horizon”, with a few already available in Europe, where there are bigger 18 / Winepress July 2018

“carrots” than those currently offered in New Zealand. However, a different possible outcome may be a shift to “swarms”, he says. “Instead of one big tractor, you might have 20 or 30 little electric drone tractors - a bit like robot lawn mowers. Swarms Some might be spraying; some might be dealing with weeds. They can charge during the day and then work at night.” Swarms are already at work in onions and potatoes in the United States and in Europe, “although, even in those industries, it is new technology and still developing”, he says. Many companies can significantly reduce their impact by taking a holistic view of their operation, says Nick, who sees energy being washed away every day by companies not valuing the potential of their wastewater. For some that means running heated water down the drain, when it could be recovered and utilised as energy, while others flush perfectly clean cold water, instead of recirculating it to use again. He recently looked at a facility that wanted a new wastewater system. “They were using clean water to provide cooling and that water despite the fact that it was not being made dirty - was going down the drain and becoming wastewater.” He says that because water is essentially

free, companies can fall into the trap of placing a low value on it. “But they ignore the fact that they actually have to spend money on heating it or treating it as wastewater, or it affects their ability to expand, because they don’t have enough of it.”

Carrots Energy Efficiency & Conservation Authority (EECA) Callaghan Innovation Sustainable Farming Fund The Waste Minimisation Fund Sustainable Land Management & Climate Change Research Programme

Sticks Rising fossil fuel costs Rising electricity costs Phasing out of refrigerants Consumer resistance Domestic regulation changes Foreign market regulations Skills shortages and labour costs

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Good Stuff

You can’t talk too early or too much about family succession, say those tackling the issue of Marlborough’s “exit planning bubble”. Photo by Niki Boon SOPHIE PREECE

20 / Winepress July 2018

MARLBOROUGH HAS New Zealand’s oldest and fasting ageing population, along with an “exit planning bubble”. That was what attendees at last month’s Wine Marlborough Succession and Exit Planning workshop were told, as they heard representatives from ANZ, Bayleys and New Zealand Trade and Enterprise (NZTE) discuss the how, why and when of moving forward. The region has 140 vineyards of 20 to 50 hectares, mainly run by couples aged 50 to 70 years old, says Wine Marlborough General Manager Marcus Pickens. There are also 470 smaller vineyards with comparable statistics, and while the figures for wine companies are not exact, they are “anecdotally similar”, flagging an

“All those couples who bought or planted vineyards in the ‘90s are now at or past retirement age.” Vance Kerslake

exodus as older vineyard owners ease back on work and investment. But too few of them have made a plan for getting out, says Wine Marlborough Advocacy Manager Vance Kerslake. He says there is “very definitely a bubble” which has been caused partly by the baby boomer demographic. “All those couples who bought or planted vineyards in the ‘90s are now at or past retirement age.” It is also due to a Rob Simcic. Photo by Niki Boon lack of considered conversations about future generations”. That has made what will happen with their land and leasing land a very popular solution, business, meaning illness or injury because it protects ownership while may ultimately force their hand, he providing “a breathing space” for says. “Poor planning might also mean succession or sale. Leasing also works their land or wine brand is not ready well for international companies for sale, should that be necessary or in Marlborough because they can desired.” Vance says there have been plenty sidestep the rigmarole of purchasing land, which requires application to the of recent sales that reflect the ageing Overseas Investment Office, Vance population in the industry. However, says. for many families the priority is to NZTE Investment Manager keep the land and business in family Michelle Cole also emphasised the ownership, “producing an income for

Get Talking You cannot talk too early or too much about family succession, says ANZ’s Head of Food and Beverage Rob Simcic. Research into longstanding family businesses in Europe suggest the average age to start the conversation with the next generation is 8 years old, he told the Wine Marlborough Succession and Exit Planning Workshop. “Get everyone’s expectations on the table, and get them out as early as possible.” He said family businesses could be a platform for longterm success, noting that internationally and domestically, family businesses tend to be more financially successful, resilient and innovative. But the old New Zealand family business succession model doesn’t work as well as it once did, because concepts of family equity have changed,

people live longer and need more money in retirement, “and property based businesses tend to be more complex with more resources and more skills required to manage”, he said. His talk looked at how to manage the transition to the next generation whilst strengthening the business, as well as exploring exit strategies involving a partial sale combined with a change in the business model. In either case, a key to success is quality communication, Rob said, noting that you “really can’t talk too early or involve too many family members in discussion”. Some of the conversations can be quite difficult and emotional, he said, “which is why it often works to bring in a skilled independent person in to facilitate”.

Winepress July 2018 / 21

“Get everyone’s expectations on the table, and get them out as early as possible.” Rob Simcic

“exit planning bubble” in New Zealand, telling workshop attendees that 61% of the country’s business owners are aged 50 plus, 10,000 businesses could change hands in the next five years and 70% of business owners believe their family are not capable of taking over the operation. The workshop involved groups looking at shareholder objectives, considering personal goals, including wealth, health, lifestyle, career, reputation and appetite for risk, as well as understanding the objectives of other shareholders. They then looked

at business objectives, considering what the business is capable of achieving, how it could reach its objectives and how external assistance - shareholders, partnerships and governance and advisors - could help realise its targets. The business objectives and shareholder objectives need to be differentiated, but they are also circular and should drive each other, she told the group. “If there are multiple shareholders, it is critical to ensure individual objectives are understood and aligned.”

Workforce Exit Succession and exit planning in Marlborough’s wine industry has serious implications for the region’s labour market, already at crisis levels, says Wine Marlborough General Manager Marcus Pickens. “We also have this challenge of being the first region where the working age population will decline,” he adds, quoting an NZIER (The New Zealand Institute of Economic Research) economist in saying “Marlborough needs 1,000 workers each year just to replace those leaving the workplace”.

Wine Marlborough Advocacy Manager Vance Kerslake says owner operators often do more than an FTE’s (full time equivalent) worth of work in running their own business and working on their own vineyard. If they choose to sell or lease out blocks, removing their own effort from the market, the labour shortage will be exacerbated. “There are a lot of hard working, skilled and experienced people looking to exit the industry and a lot of employees will be needed to fill those gaps.”

1.7 Copy Photo description

A photo description field has been added in each template allowing you to enter text over images within the templa than photoshopping the text within the images prior to uploading. This function ensures all text is in the same positi and size across all ads. The text will appear in the bottom left hand corner of the photo selected. This feature is intended to be used to display information critical to the sale of the property. It should not be used to include sentences about certain features of the property. Examples of suitable descriptions are noted below: • Boundary lines are indicative only • Photo not taken from site • Artist’s impression

1.8 Icons 3




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Professional photography is a minimum requirement for all properties advertised by Bayleys. For images to be good to reproduce on a printed page, they need to be high resolution. The picture must consist of at least 300dpi (dots p at the size that is to be reproduced. You will lose quality if you enlarge the image and this will make the image pixela look out of focus and will degrade the image, having large ‘dots’ or ‘squares’ in it. Therefore photographs must be ta high resolution and they must be large enough in size to be reproduced in print.

Any photos taken on cell phones, or downloaded/screenshotted from websites such as Google Maps or Property Gu cannot be accepted.

All photos promoting properties for sale or lease need to be taken in colour. They can then be retouched by a profes required e.g. brightening/blueing the sky, removing graffiti or competitor agency signs etc. However, please ensure t taken too far with the end result becoming a misrepresentation of the actual property.

Importantly, please avoid using any filters/treatmen altering the colours within the image at all.

22 / Winepress July 2018

Your photographer should be briefed thoroughly p commencing the job, and ideally shown examples o the photos will be used across various marketing c including print, online and outdoor. This way they c sure to capture the angles required, with sufficient and portrait options. As people are increasingly vie listings on mobile phones, these portrait photos wi increasingly important to ensure we are displaying for sale in the best possible light.

Any artist’s impressions, maps or subdivision plans be drawn professionally and signed off by a memb

Moving Forward Passing on the family land is a complicated business. SOPHIE PREECE talks to a handful of Marlborough winegrowers about their succession plans.

Starborough Farming Company Family succession is the “driving force” behind every business decision James and Andrew Jones make. “It always comes back to ‘how does that stack up when we think of the next generation?’” says James, whose great grandfather arrived in New Zealand in 1864, and soon bought land in Marlborough. As the fourth generation farming in the region, the brothers know the sacrifices made over 150 years to ensure they could come back to the land, and are determined to do the same for their children, and their children’s children, he says. The Jones’ grandfather bought land at O’Dwyers Rd, where James and Andrew were raised by parents Bill (pictured at the wheel of the tractor above) and Lynette. In 1992, Bill and Lynette then purchased the historic Starborough farm in the Awatere Valley, seeing the potential of flat land, suitable for cropping, and an expansion that would allow both sons the opportunity to farm, should they choose to. It was a stressful acquisition,

following some tough years of farming, but Starborough’s potential was far greater than they’d hoped, as grapes spread through the Awatere, and their land proved perfect for vineyard development. Bill and Lynette’s foresight went beyond land investment, with an early and proactive stance on succession. When they bought Starborough, Andrew, who is the eldest, had committed to returning to the family farm, but James was finishing high school and unsure of his aspirations. He went on to do an Agriculture Science degree and, when some of the family land was converted to grapes in 2001, decided to return to Marlborough in 2003, to manage further vineyard expansion. As soon as that decision had been made, his parents set up a company to hold the family farm, of which Andrew and James were made majority shareholders. The company then owed a debt back to Lynette and Bill. “That was the vehicle for our succession, which was a really good one,” says James. “Huge kudos to mum and dad. I

think the mistake a lot of people make, is they don’t talk about it until it is too late.” Now James and his family live at O’Dwyers Farm and he manages the company’s vineyard operations and the Starborough wine label, while Andrew and his family live at Starborough, where he manages the arable farming operation. “It’s a great partnership, for brothers to work so closely and get on so well,” James says. Having the cropping and vineyard arms means they have very distinct roles and responsibilities, “but all working towards this common goal, which gives us huge strength”. James says vineyards have made succession so much more viable in Marlborough, because of the productive value of the land and the ability to value add. That was in mind when they developed the Starborough wine label, which will ultimately create more employment opportunities for future family members. “The opportunities the wine industry has created for the family are incredible.” The Jones children and

Winepress July 2018 / 23

and beyond,” James says. “I guess you always have that ultimate goal, which drives all decisions - to make the opportunities that you have been given, for your kids. That’s at the forefront of every decision.” Smart Succession

James Jones. Photo by Jim Tannock

grandchildren might not want to be involved on a day-to-day basis, but there are plenty of ways of creating a succession structure that works for all, James says. “The property can be leased and the asset held in family ownership, so that all family shareholders get a dividend and the asset is maintained.” In another scenario, the business may be run by some family members, as employees, while other shareholders have a silent holding. In the meantime, he and Andrew have continued to expand the vineyard holdings. “It’s not about making enough money so we can retire at 50. It’s about looking after the farm so it can move to the next generation

There can be plenty of emotion in family succession, and no “magic wand” to make it easy, says Ben Ensor. He loved growing up on his family’s 3,000 hectare Tyntesfield farm in the Waihopai Valley, but left for university and stayed away for a career in rural banking, without much idea of how or when he would return. His father Edward ran a vineyard operation on the land, while his uncle David ran the farm, in a successful partnership that worked for everyone. However, when Edward died unexpectedly in 2007, aged just

Ben Ensor

58, there had been few conversations about what would happen next. “The way we did it wasn’t well planned at all,” says Ben. “I came back and there wasn’t really a structure of how it would work.” Banking had taught Ben that in succession of family farms, “emotions are so strong and there’s a different way for everyone”, but that the common key to success was compromise and an equitable outcome. “I was keen to get involved and I came back and filled the role that dad had, looking after the vineyard.” Tyntesfield is run as a company, so he effectively bought his parents’ shareholding. Meanwhile, his sister Emma received money to establish her own home and career, while the land stayed in the family, says Ben. “We made a plan that everyone was happy with and still is.” While Edward may not have set up a succession structure, his foresight in putting in vineyards was all about future generations, says Ben. “Diversification creates more opportunities in the future. Honestly, I probably wouldn’t have been able to come home if we didn’t have the vineyard.” Buying into, living on and working for the family farm can be a challenge, but he reminds himself how lucky he is to be there. “The way I look at it is ‘I am employed by the company to do the best job possible, as others have done before me’.” And being asset rich comes with “great opportunities” that appeal to his entrepreneurial spirit. In 2017 the

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24 / Winepress July 2018

company bought McDonald Textiles, a knitwear manufacturing company that uses possum fur and the farm’s merino to tap into the lucrative tourism industry. Emma also has a shareholding and is General Manager of the “field to fashion” operation. The business adds breadth to Tyntesfield’s succession plans, which involve Ben and Lisa’s children Harriet and Hugo, 10 and 8 respectively, as well as the children of David’s son Tim, who is also back on the farm. The diversification of farm, vines and textiles mean there’s huge scope, from marketing and sales to business management and directorship, Ben says. “Even supply chain management - it opens up a massive world of opportunity for anyone in the family.” Family Ties Being shoulder tapped for family succession came out of the blue for Ben McLauchlan, who clearly remembers the Saturday afternoon in 2012, when his uncle Bruce called with an offer. “He said ‘I have been thinking and at some stage in the future I would like you to take over here’.” The idea took seed and in late 2013, when Ben and his wife Helen saw adjoining farm Willowlea for sale, they decided to take the plunge, buying it in partnership with Bruce. Bruce has spent his whole “workaholic” life on his Wratts Road farm, first with his father Lyell, who bought Balvonie farm in 1935. Over the years, the holding has expanded significantly, with three neighbouring

blocks purchased, while Bruce grew kiwifruit, converted paddock to vines, and continued Lyell’s beef operation. Ben grew up on a sheep and beef farm near the Wairau Valley township, and went on to study forestry then commerce. In 1997, seeing Marlborough’s big growth in wine, he did a postgraduate degree in wine at Lincoln University. The marketing side of the business captured him and set him Bruce McLauchlan and his nephew Ben on a sales and marketing career in New Zealand then London. the business, which includes pushing “During that time I was thinking about vines in and beef out, although he’s what the future held. I knew Bruce was treading very carefully, knowing “the doing some cool stuff and the vision big mental jump for Bruce and the was to own a vineyard at some stage.” family”. New vineyard blocks are being He came back to New Zealand to work named in recognition of those who in sales for Villa Maria then Lion, came before, including the King Pin before moving to Blenheim for a job at block, named for one of Lyell’s horses, BNZ in 2014. which was awarded its Royal Easter “It all flowed in extremely well Show Champion Horse ribbon by the together, which was really exciting,” Queen in 1953, and Copper block, says Ben. He’s been full time in the named for Bruce’s favourite polo pony. business since 2016, thanks to the help “It’s trying to bring some of that history of Geoff van Asch, of Blenheim’s TvA into our every day,” says Ben. Chartered Accountants. Geoff helped He sees his role as being a the family create a succession model caretaker of the land for future that works for Ben and his 10 siblings generations, whether they actively and cousins. There was a lot of “angst, want to be involved or not. “That’s thought and emotion” Ben says, “but it their choice, but we will continue is something that works with Bruce’s this entity within the McLauchlan wishes and for the 11 of us.” family.” He brings a commercial focus to

Winepress July 2018 / 25

Tomorrow’s Tohu Wakatū has a 500-year plan when it comes to succession. Winepress asked CEO Kerensa Johnston about being “intergenerational thinkers”. Given the ownership by 4,000 descendants of the original Māori land owners of the Nelson, Tasman and Golden Bay regions, how does Wakatū look at succession of vineyards and wine company? We look at the long-term future for our vineyards and wine company in the same way that we look at all aspects of our business, which is through the lens of our 500-year plan, Te Pae Tawhiti, or the long horizon. We consider the whenua and moana, land and sea, taonga. It is our responsibility to preserve and enhance the taonga that was left to us, now and for the future. We do this through the sustainable use and development of our land and resources, and by creating a community that our people are proud of. Under Te Pae Tawhiti, we have two sets of guiding objectives: identity and integrity; and development and innovation. How do the cultural and corporate aspirations merge? We are a Māori family business, 26 / Winepress July 2018

and as such we are guided by both our values and tikanga. Our values include kaitiakitanga, caring for the people and environment, and whanaungatanga, putting relationships at the centre. Along with these values, manaakitanga, showing kindness and hospitality, and rangatiratanga, leadership, are integral to the way we conduct ourselves across all

“Recently we have embarked on a journey to better understand what land wellness means.” Kerensa Johnston

our businesses. Hihiko, a concept encompassing energy, is what we use to inspire us to continue to innovate. Pono, doing the right thing and showing integrity in the way we conduct ourselves rounds out our values that shape the way we do business. What are the priorities for the company in protecting those assets for the future generations? We are intergenerational thinkers. Te Pae Tawhiti guides and directs us in the here and now, and into the future, so the whenua and moana are in good health for current and generations to come. Twenty years ago, Tohu Wines was established and was the first Māori owned wine company. Environmental considerations have always been important to us in running the vineyards and winery. Recently we have embarked on a journey to better understand what land wellness means. We have been researching and establishing benchmarks, so that we can better understand the

Grow your career Study viticulture and winemaking in Marlborough, the heart of New Zealand’s wine industry.

interconnection and relationships of the ecological systems around us, and the long term consequences of our business practices. How does the broader business model, including the Associate Director Scheme, further your succession aspirations? Our Associate Director programme ensures we are continuing to build capability so the next generation can be involved at every level of our organisation. It’s a programme focussed on developing governance, management and leadership skills in our families. As well as the commercial and governance skills, the programme builds connections and deepens understanding of the history and families of Wakatū. Following the success of the Associate Director programme, we have introduced an Associate Manager strand of the programme, which is focused on encouraging deeper understanding of the business at an operational level.

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Can you tell me about the outcomes of that scheme? The Associate Director Programme was started in 2002. Including the two current associate directors, we have had 14 associate directors on the programme. Every one of those people is still involved with Wakatū in some way. I’m a graduate of the scheme, as is Kono CEO Rachel Taulelei, and board members Miriama Stephens, Jeremy Banks and Johnny McGregor. It’s not just our Associate Director and Manager Programme: our youth and cultural wānanga and academic scholarships are other ways we are ensuring future generations of our families have the skills, knowledge and connections to lead us for the next 500 years and beyond. Winepress July 2018 / 27

Generation Y-ine Joining the family business was never a given for Edward Macdonald BRENDA WEBB

EDWARD MACDONALD’S first job at Hunter’s Wines was cleaning the pool and mowing the lawns. While at school, the son of general manager Peter Macdonald and nephew of Managing Director Jane Hunter spent many weekends and holidays at the Raupara Rd winery. He soon graduated to vineyard work and tractor driving, and during university holidays came back to do cellar work. But it was always for pocket money, never in a grooming capacity. “There was never any expectation I would step into the family business - it was almost the opposite,” says Edward. “There was certainly never any pressure on me to work here.” The Macdonald family moved to Marlborough in 1991, when Peter came to help Jane run the business in the wake of her husband Ernie Hunter’s premature death in 1987. Peter’s son James, now Hunter’s chief winemaker, was 4 at the time and Edward was born here, making him “the only true Kiwi in the family,” he jokes. The brothers went to Marlborough Boys’ College before heading off down different career paths – James following the winemaking route at Lincoln University and Edward heading to Victoria University to do his Bachelor of Commerce. After finishing his degree, Edward headed to London, where he worked until a suitable vacancy arose at Hunter’s. “The timing was right – our visas were running out and the lease on our flat was coming up. We were sick of the

28 / Winepress July 2018

hustle and bustle of London and never having any money. The time seemed right to return home to Marlborough we wanted to have animals and buy our own house.” He returned home and moved into the administrative coordinator role at Hunter’s, where he still works today and is responsible for the logistics side of the business. “I’ve always been good at maths and like the accounting/ logistics side – I’m doing a post grad in accounting at the moment,” he

“There was certainly never any pressure on me to work here.” Edward Macdonald says. “We’ve got our own bottling line so there are a lot of logistics around bottling and export.” Edward has also taken on a marketing role and is responsible for the company’s social media profile. And while many youngsters who grow up on vineyards tend to step

into the winemaking or viticultural side, Edward was happy to leave that to James. “I like the idea of an office, and while some would say it’s not as sexy as winemaking, I find it quite fulfilling,” he says. “The winery side didn’t appeal. I like the financial and budgeting aspects – the nitty gritty side of it.” He particularly enjoys the challenge of world markets and seeing how businesses survive, particularly in tough times. The brothers have quite different roles but clearly complement one another. “He’s got his team and I’ve got mine,” he says. “We are both big foodies and very much into wine – we both had such a good advantage in terms of growing up in the industry.” Being a family member comes with expectations but neither of them rest on their laurels. “In fact, I think we have to work harder to prove ourselves because we are family,” he says. “We are constantly on call – I think it’s a lot different to coming in from outside the company. There are pros and cons and this role certainly wasn’t created for me – it became available and I had the right skills.”

Family Business Edward and James Macdonald had to “earn their stripes” before taking up roles at Hunter’s Wines, according to their aunt Jane Hunter, the company’s Managing Director. “It wasn’t a case of just putting family in – I’ve seen plenty of disasters in family businesses so it certainly wasn’t handed to them on a plate,” she says. “We were very fortunate in the family to have two young people passionate for the area and the right people for the jobs that were available at the time.” James has been a winemaker at Hunter’s for four years and his brother Edward has been Administrative Coordinator for two. Both grew up in Marlborough and went to Marlborough Boys’ College, spending weekends and spare time earning pocket money working in various roles at Hunter’s, where their father Peter Macdonald is General Manager. But it was never a given they would go into future roles within the business, says Jane. “I always said to them, ‘don’t think we will be waiting for you, because it may be that we sell or move on’. But as it turned out they came back after time away and both earned their stripes.” Jane has certainly earned hers, having been responsible for taking Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc to the world back in the days when the wine industry was in its fledgling stages. “At the beginning it was all PCL AD Winepress 2016.pdf 1 15/07/16 3:21about PM

getting Marlborough recognised,” she says. “Things have changed and matured and the younger people bring a new perspective, but even in a family business – perhaps more particularly in a family business - there is not an automatic right to be here.” It took a while for the brothers to settle into their current roles Jane Hunter and Edward and there was plenty Macdonald. Photo by Jim Tannock of planning involved, Jane says. “We needed to formalise arrangements, introduce more governance and have clear structure and defined meetings – we couldn’t just stop for a chat in the hallway.” As she and Peter take a lesser role, it is necessary to have greater formality, she says. We are the shareholders and have valuable input and it is in our interests to keep an eye on things.”


Let us take care of all your controlled Temperature storage requirements: ◆ Custom controlled area ◆ Approved Transitional Facility for unloading of Imported Containers



Over 60,000 cubic metres of storage spread over two sites.


Chilled storage available during vintage for handpicked grapes.


Sophisticated monitoring equipment ensures your product is kept at the optimum temperature.

We could lease you a small room for your exclusive use to suit your particular temperature requirements (0 o C to + 30 o C).

We store bottled wine, barrels of wine and new plants





awaiting the opportune time to plant. ◆

Individual rooms available to grow new budwood.

“the coolest place in Marlborough” Old Renwick Road, Blenheim Tel: 03 578 2648 Fax: 03 578 2546

Gouland Road, Spring Creek. Tel: 03 570 5944 Fax: 03 570 5955

Roundwood Limited Suppliers of Quality Roundwood Contact:

Grant Cathcart Phone 03 313 8339 fax 03 313 3767 mobile 021 511 460

Winepress July 2018 / 29

Industry News Responsib’ALL Day Around 18,500 Pernod Ricard employees worldwide dedicated a combined 148,000 hours to volunteer in local community projects last month, in the company’s Responsib’ALL Day 2018. More than 140 Marlborough team members supported the Marlborough RSA by harvesting olives at the Burleigh Memorial Olive Grove. The olives will be pressed into special edition olive oil to raise funds to provide support services for local war veterans. Real Estate Update There have been some post-harvest vineyard sales reported locally, with some of significant size, says Greg Lyons of PGG Wrightson Real Estate. Wine companies and investors have purchased large properties that weren’t actively marketed. A number of smaller vineyards with dwellings appear to be slower moving, but that segment of the market is still achieving quality values when sold, he says. Strong interest from neighbours and established growers for production blocks are still achieving “exceptional” prices in desired locations, says Greg. “Indications are that the market will increase activity in the coming months as strategic locations and secure water will bring strong Marlborough sales for our marketplace.”

that lends itself to high-quality, ultrapremium winemaking. VinWizard Managing Director David Gill received the 2018 award for the company’s Multi-Level-Probe, with American distribution partner Tom Beard Company in attendance. “Every winery tank has different points of ferment activity depending on refrigeration effectiveness and tank design”, says David. “Pump-overs, which mix the ferment, and provide much needed oxygen, also affect temperature throughout the tank. The problem is, frequency and duration of pump-overs are often based on assumptions.” VinWizard’s Multi-Level-Probe can have five to 30 sensors linked in a chain from the top to bottom of the tank. The software displays a vertical thermal bar on-screen and graphs each sensor level over the life of the ferment. Winemakers can dynamically see the effects of pump-overs on the entire tank. They can select which sensor will be the control point or control by average temperature, cap temperature or high/low point. Pump-overs can be automatically started when stratification reaches predetermined trigger points. “This last point helps lower production costs as energy stored in cold sections of the tank lower the overall temperature through mixing,” David says. He heads the company’s global research and development initiatives and says it is imperative they continue to push boundaries.

30 / Winepress July 2018

Sparkling wine workshop The New Zealand Society for Viticulture and Oenology (NZVSO) is holding a sparkling wine workshop in Marlborough on August 28, one day before the Bragato Conference in Wellington. The audience will hear from keynote speaker Ed Carr and Yalumba chief winemaker Louisa Rose, along with a selection of New Zealand winemakers and viticulturists. For further information and registration, link to the NZSVO website www.nzsvo. SWE Living Wage Employer Marlborough company SWE has been recognised as an accredited “Living Wage Employer” by Living Wage Movement Aotearoa NZ. The water engineering and irrigation consultancy company was already paying all staff above living wage, but wanted to be part of an accredited process for validation and accountability,

CLASSIFIEDS Vineyards Wanted: 2019 onwards for Lease or Grape Supply. Sauvignon blanc, pinot gris, pinot noir or mix thereof. Contact: james@

VinWizard’s Innovation Award A Marlborough-based company has won an award at the Innovation + Quality Napa Valley forum. Each year, products are hand selected by the Innovation + Quality advisory board and Wine Business Monthly team, based solely on criteria of innovation

French cuisine, Vin Chaud (mulled wine), live accordion and pétanque on offer. The family day runs from 11am to 3pm, with food and wine available for purchase.

Bastille Day Clos Henri Vineyard is holding its 10th consecutive Bastille Day event on Sunday July 15, with kids activities,

For Lease. Brookby Road hillside Pinot Noir block. 2.2 metre rows 1.2957 Hectares, mainly planted in 2000, clone 115 on 3309 rootstock, some planted later 667 clone on 101/14. Call 021 023 658 23

says Managing Director Stephen Leitch. “Our business philosophy is based on integrity, which for us means doing the right thing by our staff, our clients, our community and our environment.” The “living wage” describes the income necessary to provide workers and their families with the basics of life, and in New Zealand is set at $20.55 per hour, well up on the adult minimum wage of $16.50 per hour. “It’s the amount that workers need to survive and participate in society,” says Living Wage Convener Annie Newman. There are around 90 other Living Wage employers in New Zealand, including Banjo Brews, which is Marlborough’s only other accredited company. SWE Administration Assistant Jasmine Wilson, in her first ever living wage role, says it’s great to work for a company that values its people and pays them accordingly. “It gives me so much more security and peace of mind. I can afford all my bills now, and daycare for my child. It makes me even more loyal, and I definitely go the extra mile too, because I know I am appreciated.” Wilson will also become the fifth SWE team member to be sent on an Outward Bound course this month, paid for by the company, with assistance from the Marlborough First Light Foundation and the Joyce Fisher Charitable Trust. Leggett in China Marlborough Mayor John Leggett travelled to Ningxia, China, last month, leading a small delegation of business and education representatives to the world’s fifth-largest wine region. Last year Marlborough and the Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region signed a sister-region agreement to build a business relationship centred on their mutual grape Marlborough Mayor John growing and winemaking Leggett at Xi’ge winery with industries. With contrasting winemaker Liao climates, the regions grow different varieties, so technology and training opportunities are the focus of Marlborough’s interest. There have already been some sales of oenology equipment to Ningxia by Marlborough businesses. Mr Leggett says one of the aims of this visit was to encourage the Ningxia Government to support an expansion of the numbers of Ningxia students travelling to Marlborough to study at secondary schools and the Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology. The trip included a visit to Yu Ge Winery, a joint venture between Marlborough and Ningxia. Grand Winter Tasting Wino’s is hosting a Grand Winter Tasting at the ASB Theatre on July 26, from 6pm to 9pm, with more than 100 local and international wines, champagnes, spirits and craft beers.

Tickets cost $25.00 per person, including canapés, and orders on the night receive a 15% discount. Email for tickets. Hot Brand Whitehaven Wines is one of four “Hot” New Zealand brands for wine imported into the US, according to Market Watch. It is the second year in a row the Marlborough wine company has made the USA’s 2017 Imported Wine Hot Brands list, and recognises the company’s 25% growth in the market during 2017. One of the criteria to be considered for the Hot Brand list is double digit growth each year in 2015, 2016 and 2017. Whitehaven has been exporting to the United States since 2004 when its first shipment totalled just 5,000 cases. In 2015, Whitehaven celebrated the export of its millionth case of wine to the US. Bayer North Canterbury Young Viticulturist Zoe Marychurch from Bell Hill in North Canterbury won the Bayer South Island Regional Young Viticulturist of the Year competition last month. This new regional competition is open to contestants from Nelson, Canterbury and Waitaki, and the winner goes through to represent their own region at the national final. Zoe will go on to compete against five other contestants from Northland, Hawke’s Bay, Central Otago, Wairarapa and Marlborough.



Your investment for the future

ENQUIRIES OVER $2.1M Plus GST (if any)

491 State Highway 63 This 11.4ha vineyard offers serious opportunity to either grow your portfolio or get your foot on the ladder. 8.80ha total canopy area planted in 2002, this property is situated on soils producing premium Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir. With expert vineyard management by local contractors, supported by an A Class water right, it is of no surprise that these grapes are under supply agreement to a premium wine company. This quality vineyard is an investment opportunity where you are capitalising on hectares producing income, there are no overcapitalised buildings here - call me today to discuss.

Mark Terry M 027 572 2559 B 03 579 3659

PGG Wrightson Real Estate Limited, licensed under the REAA 2008.

Winepress July 2018 / 31

Brought to you by

Wine Happenings A monthly list of events within the New Zealand wine industry.

To have your event included in next monthâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Wine Happenings or Industry News pages, please email details to by July 20. For more information on the events below email Harriet Wadworth at

JULY 13 15 20 26

Marlborough Bayer Young Viticulturist of the Year Bastille Day at Clos Henri. See page 30 Tonnellerie de Mercurey South Island Young Winemaker of the Year Competition Winoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Winter Grand Tasting - ASB Theatre, 6pm to 9pm

AUGUST 17 Specialist Media Training with Nicola Coburn. 9am to 12pm. Contact 20 Tonnellerie De Mercurey Young Winemaker of the Year National Final - Auckland 26 Silver Secateurs Competition (see pg 30) 28 NZVSO Sparkling Wine Workshop (see pg 30) 30-31 Bragato Conference, Wellington ( OCTOBER 15-17 Marlborough Wine Show Judging at the Marlborough Convention Centre

Bayer Young Viticulturist - July 13

Silver Secateurs Competition - August 26

North Island Northland Auckland Waikato

Bay of Plenty Gisborne Hawke's Bay


Wairarapa Marlborough

South Island


Central Otago

Sparkling Wine Workshop - August 28

Horticentre expands its national footprint.

Hawke's Bay: Opened 1st October 2017 Central Otago: Opened May 2018 Gisborne: Opening Spring 2018 A great team, expert advice and quality products, call us today. Horticentre - 0800 855 255 TasmanCrop - 0800 855 255 HortFertplus - 0800 273 748


Driving Crop Performance

32 / Winepress July 2018


Soil nutrient management

It is an ideal time to get soil tests taken and look at soil nutrient balances â&#x20AC;&#x201C; take the guess work out of nutrition management!


Farmlands has your pruning requirements covered at very competitive prices, from clips and ties to loppers and secateurs, talk to your Technical Advisor or visit your local Farmlands store.

Trunk Disease

Minimise the risk of trunk disease entry to pruning wounds by applying a protective paint or spray after pruning.


Talk to us now about posts and bamboo to ensure that theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re available for your development work.


For all the winter solutions you need, talk to the Farmlands Horticulture team today.

0800 200 600

Orchard-RiteÂŽ Wind Machines Time to get them serviced

The winter months are the perfect time to get your Orchard-Rite wind machines serviced before the risk of spring frosts. The Fruitfed Supplies team has an excellent knowledge of Orchard-Rite wind machines. If you need information about recommended servicing to ensure efficient running and protection of your crop, please contact your local Fruitfed Supplies store.

Image is for illustrative purposes only. Our Customer Terms of Trade/Sale located at apply to the sale of products and services listed here unless specified otherwise.

Fruitfed Supplies is part of PGG Wrightson Ltd

Winepress - July 2018  

Celebrating Success | Appellation Wine | Exit Bubble | Succession Planning

Winepress - July 2018  

Celebrating Success | Appellation Wine | Exit Bubble | Succession Planning