SPARKLING NEWS

$2.5m support for wine industry for smoke testing and advice
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PROTECTING THE VINTAGE: Victorian Minister for Agriculture Jaclyn Symes with Sam Miranda at Sam Miranda King Valley Wines discussing the quality of the grapes. PHOTO: Kieren Tilly

THE local wine industry can access a $2.5 million support package announced by Minister for Agriculture Jaclyn Symes in the King Valley last Thursday.
In light of recent bushfires, the package is designed to assist both growers and producers with advice regarding both their business operations and crops that have been directly affected.
“Our wine industry is vibrant, diverse and a vital part of our economy – that’s why we’re ensuring the industry has access to the support and advice it needs to be best placed for this year’s vintage,” Ms Symes said.
“We’re actively working with the wine industry to identify options and support the sector in managing the impact of the fires.”
Of paramount importance to winemakers will be the necessity of testing the current vintage of wine grapes which may have been affected by prolonged exposure to bushfire smoke.
$1.2 million has been earmarked to provide a rebate to help growers get smoke exposure tests from specialist labs. The rebate will be capped at $1200 per grower and will be available state-wide.
$1 million is allocated for grants to growers who receive a test result that suggests their grapes might be smoke affected to assist with technical decision-making advice and support.
Another $300,000 is available to research reliable and inexpensive predictive tests for potential quality impacts of smoke.


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