14 Oct 2014

EU breakthrough for NZ organic wine

7:25 am on 14 October 2014

New Zealand's organic wine industry has had a breakthrough in getting recognition from the European Union.

green grapes on vine

Photo: PHOTO NZ

The European Commission has agreed to recognise New Zealand's organic wine production methods as equivalent to its own.

Organic winegowers chairman Jonathan Hamlet said that was going to mean a lot less red tape and lower compliance costs in future in getting organic wine into EU markets because there would be one set of standards.

"The implications are fantastic in terms of streamlining our abiliy to export into the EU. In the past, we've actually had to apply for a completely separate organic importing licence which has been quite market specific, which has been quite an additional cost and a lot of paperwork to get through to actually export to those markets.

"So now through a big effort with MPI and New Zealand Winegrowers, we have finally reached a point where we have the ability to export a lot more easily to the EU."

The new arrangement will take full effect in July next year. New Zealand exports an estimated $44 million worth of organic wine per year.

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