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CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
WINE AUSTRALIA WILL CONTINUE
ITS WORK TO BUILD A PROSPEROUS
AUSTRALIAN GRAPE AND WINE
COMMUNITY IN 2016.
WHAT WAS THE MAJOR
AREA OF FOCUS FOR WINE
AUSTRALIA IN 2015?
Our focus is always to deliver value to our
levy payers, who are always front and centre
in our activities and in our plans for the future
of the sector.
Over the last 12 months, our team based
in Shanghai has coordinated promotional
activities in which we partnered with our
wine community. RD&E projects have been
completed that look at understanding the
China market and consumer behaviour to guide
those already in market or those interested
in entering. Our market insights team has
provided regular reports to our levy payers on
the exports to China to help business decisions.
And our regulatory services team has not only
worked to manage market access issues, they
have also provided support to the sector by
guiding businesses through the export process
and issuing export certificates.
In June, we released our five-year
Strategic Plan and we announced our goal
of a prosperous Australian grape and wine
community. The two priorities that will help us
to achieve this goal are increasing demand and
the premium paid for all Australian wine, and
WHAT WILL BE YOUR MAIN
INITIATIVES IN 2016?
Over the next year, we will work to bring to life
the Australian wine story, one that is unique to
our grape and wine community.
We will continue to spread the word about
our fine wines around the world, share the
excitement of Australian wines and show its
great diversity in our key export markets.
Our marketing activities will be underpinned
by the outcomes of the RD&E we fund on
behalf of the sector and we will look to capture
opportunities from recent FTAs and the
lower Australian dollar to support our wine
community to take advantage of export markets.
We will also be working on a key
foundation data project that aims to provide
our levy payers with access to timely and
accurate benchmark information to drive
their commercial results. We’re currently out
talking to regions and other associations to
see how we can work together to incorporate
everyone’s efforts and open up the flow of the
sector’s information right across our grape
and wine community. It’s a big vision and one
that will take some time, but we’re confident
that this will help provide the sector with
the information it needs to support business
decisions to increase our competitiveness
around the world. Everything we do is in
pursuit of our goal of a prosperous Australian
grape and wine community.
WHAT DO YOU PREDICT WILL
BE INSTRUMENTAL TO THE
WINE INDUSTRY IN 2016?
The increasing value of wine exports that we
experienced in 2015 – and the sector’s strongest
rate of growth since October 2007 – looks set
to continue in 2016 and we will work tirelessly
with the Australian wine community to
capitalise on these opportunities.
Our grape and wine community has an
opportunity through the tariff reductions
that are part of the three FTAs and a lower
Australian dollar to reinvigorate its engagement
with export markets in 2016.
We’re encouraging our grape and wine
community to work closely with us through
our offices in London, Washington, Shanghai,
Sydney and Adelaide, and to participate in
our market programs activities in country to
promote Australian wine internationally.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE
CHALLENGES FACING THE
Australian wine has faced many challenges over
the last decade or so but with challenges, there
are also opportunities. What excites me about
the last 12 months is the sense of purpose I’ve
felt among our grape and wine community.
We’ve seen and reported positive export
figures for Australian wine in the last
12 months. It’s still early days and the
improvement we’ve seen in exports hasn’t yet
flowed into higher prices for our grape growing
community at large, but already there are
pockets of growers who reported improved
prices in vintage 2015 and we hope to see this
trend continue in 2016.
HOW DO YOU VIEW YOUR
ROLE IN THE INDUSTRY?
We have a long-term view to serve and
build capabilities across our grape and wine
community. We understand the commercial
needs of the wine sector and our levy payers
are always front and centre in our activities
and our plans for the future of the sector.
We operate with a commercial mindset and
seek to extract the maximum value from
every dollar we receive and aim to deliver
service and information that helps every levy
payer’s bottom line. We foster and enable
a competitive Australian wine sector by
investing RD&E, building international and
domestic markets, disseminating knowledge,
encouraging adoption and protecting the
reputation of Australian wine. Our long-term
approach also extends to our programs such as
Future Leaders and scholarships for Honours,
Masters and PhD students to encourage
innovation, collaboration and development to
build capacity in the next generation of game
changers, researchers, experts and leaders who
will drive the sector’s future.
WHAT KEY FACTORS DO YOU
THINK THE WINE INDUSTRY
SHOULD BE DISCUSSING?
In 2016, we should continue to discuss
the development of our competitiveness
We should also continue to discuss the
factors to grow the value and the volume of
our exports around the world and how we
can improve the international demand for our
fine wines. These factors will continue to have
an effect on our commerciality and we can
consider these now for the short-term and long-
term goals of our grape and wine community.
Wine Australia is committed to helping our
levy payers capitalise on these opportunities
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