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CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
YEALANDS ESTATE CONTINUES
TOWARDS ITS GOAL OF ANNUAL
SALES OF TWO MILLION CASES BY
2020, WHILE CONTINUING TO LEAD
THE WAY IN SUSTAINABLE WINE
WHAT WERE SOME OF THE
HIGHLIGHTS FOR YEALANDS
Our vision is to lead the world in sustainable
wine production and produce the world’s
best Sauvignon Blanc, delivering exceptional
experiences for wine drinkers across the globe.
In 2015, Yealands was awarded the most
successful winery at the Sydney International Top
100 where we took out 12 gold medals. We were
also awarded the trophy for Best Sauvignon Blanc
in the World at the prestigious Cathay Pacific
International Wine and Spirits Competition in
Hong Kong, as well as the trophy for Best New
Zealand Wine for our Yealands Estate Single
Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2015. To top things
off, we also picked up Sauvignon Blanc of the
Year at the annual Winestate Magazine Wine of
the Year Awards. These awards are a fantastic
recognition for our winemakers and all of the
hard work undertaken in the vineyards.
WHAT CHANGES HAS
OVER THE LAST 12 MONTHS?
We export to more than 80 countries and our
Peter Yealands brand is one of the largest wine
brands in New Zealand. In a fast growing
global business, change is constant and our
business is continually evolving and adapting
to market and economic conditions. Rapid
global demand and a lower 2015 vintage has
resulted in supply restrictions and rising prices
making it more difficult to satisfy customer
requirements. A lower New Zealand dollar,
oil prices and interest rates have all been
beneficial to the industry.
In July 2015, Marlborough Lines acquired
80 per cent of Yealands with a vision to
support and enhance our growth trajectory.
It has been an extremely exciting time for the
Yealands management team as new growth
plans are being developed that include
acquiring and developing more vineyards,
expanding our Seaview winery and investing
further in brand building and distribution
globally. We have also actively been seeking
new, long-term, high quality grape grower
partnerships to complement fruit from our
own vineyards and we will continue to expand
our base of quality growers.
WHAT IS THE FOCUS FOR
YEALANDS IN 2016?
We are targeting annual sales of two million
cases by 2020. To reach that goal we are
investing across the business in our people,
systems, winery, vineyards, machinery, brands
and markets. Our Seaview winery is currently
under expansion for vintage 2016 and we
will be undertaking new vineyard plantings
throughout the year.
At a grass roots level, our immediate focus is
managing through the current El Niño weather
pattern and drought conditions affecting
Marlborough. We have large water storage dams
onsite, but have been developing additional
dams to provide further backup water storage in
the event of prolonged drought.
On another note, in March we will be
expanding our solar PV System at our Seaview
Winery to 412kW, which we believe will be New
Zealand’s largest solar array and will provide 25
per cent of the winery’s energy requirements.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE
FACING YOUR BUSINESS?
Ensuring we have sufficient high quality grape
supply to meet our world-wide customer
demand over the long term. Global demand
for Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc is incredibly
strong, with many markets only just being
developed but with very high growth potential.
Suitable vineyard land with good water
supply in Marlborough is a diminishing
resource that is well sought after by industry
participants. Securing land holdings and fruit
supply to support future growth is a challenge.
Another challenge is drought and changing
weather patterns. As a result of climate change,
we are currently facing challenges around
sustainable energy use, and exploring different
ways to change how energy is supplied and used.
At Yealands, we are committed to being
the world’s most sustainable winery, and we
employ a number of different initiatives to
reduce our carbon emissions year on year and
use alternative energy sources. Some of the
more interesting initiatives include using our
miniature ‘Babydoll’ sheep to graze on the
vineyard year round. They perform a much
needed mowing and fertilizing job, and are
short enough that they can’t reach the grapes
to eat. This saves on a significant volume of
fuel we were previously using for mowing on a
large 1000 hectare property.
WHAT IS ONE ISSUE TO BE
URGENTLY ADDRESSED IN
THE WINE INDUSTRY?
Climate change is a major global issue for this
generation to tackle across all industries. The
impact of climate change will inevitably make
it harder to grow grapes in traditional wine
growing regions over time, and New Zealand
is not exempt. It will become more difficult to
ripen grapes in certain areas without the need
for further irrigation and special inputs which
will make wine production more expensive. We
trust other wineries, suppliers and our trading
partners are also instigating changes that
will collectively make a positive difference to
WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS TO
ENGAGE TRADE AND DRIVE
SALES IN 2016?
We have launched a targeted advertising
campaign to highlight some excellent awards
our wines have received lately. It featured
digital billboards and advertising on metro
bus backs in Sydney and Melbourne over the
New Year period. These accolades are worth
shouting about, hence the advertising push
to grow consumer awareness of our award
winning wines, and stimulate trade enquiries.
The bus routes were carefully selected for
advertising, to ensure they pass some of our
key customers who stock and support these
wines. We also have some exciting new brand
developments and range extensions planned for
the year ahead.
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