1 Mar 2024

Australian winegrowers protest over plummeting returns

From Country Life, 7:16 pm on 1 March 2024
Winemaker Chris Archer

Winemaker Chris Archer Photo: RNZ/Sally Round

As New Zealand vintners prepare for their grape harvest, spare a thought for growers over the ditch.

Crisis talks have been held in the Riverland region of South Australia. The problems growers face there are shared by the wider region which supplies almost 70 percent of the country's crush.

The growers who mostly supply bulk wine producers have also staged protests about the rock-bottom prices they've been getting for their fruit, and reports say many are throwing in the towel, leaving grapes on the ground, moving into pumpkins or spraying their vines to stop them germinating.

Our guest Chris Archer works in both the Australian and New Zealand wine industries as a winemaker and consultant and as co-owner of niche New Zealand-based wine company Joiy.