On Wednesday and Thursday last week, a group comprising 18 participants of the Wine Australia regional program and Wine Australia staff travelled to the Riverland region for the annual meeting of the Regional Program Partners. The Regional Program uses funding specifically set aside for research and extension programs in the regional areas, and managed by the Riverland Wine members. Riverland programs include the well-attended field days, clonal trials, and the recent nutrition workshop. During the course of the visit, the future of the program was discussed in detail. Wine Australia foreshadowed a potential review of the program structure and operation following the 2016 season but for the time being, it’s business as usual.
Riverland Wine took the opportunity to impress upon the visitors the scale, diversity and quality of product that makes the wine industry such an important part of this region.
The guests visited CCW and Accolade Wines, the Riverland Vine Improvement site and Almondco. They also took part in a tasting of wine from the Riverland clonal trial and some local producers of ‘alternative’ variety wines. The travellers visited Ricca Terra farms to see alternative varieties growing in the field and hear about producing and selling high value fruit in the region.
Feedback from the wines in the clonal trial and from local producers of the ‘alternative’ varieties was uniformly good. Many were highly impressed with the high quality and exceptional value of the wines that local producers are making in the region.This positive impression ensures that the Riverland commands a constructive and professional response in future exchanges with both Wine Australia management and with industry representatives from other regions.