GWRDC investigates International Standards for environmental certification

The Grape and Wine Research and Development Corporation (GWRDC) has contracted McLaren Vale Grape, Wine and Tourism Association to explore the most effective and efficient ways a wine region can receive International Standard Organisation (ISO) certification.

The certification will enable the region to receive the environmental and economic benefits associated with the implementation of the ISO 1401 standard.

‘This is an exciting project that will determine whether ISO 1401 certification for a wine region is feasible’, said Dr Stuart Thomson, GWRDC’s Executive Director.

‘The scoping project will outline the benefits that ISO 1401 certificationcan deliver for a wine region, providing reference to improved farm gate returns and improved margins that wine brands can achieve.

‘Part of the project will develop tools so that other wine regions have a step-by-step guide to gaining ISO certification.

‘This would enable Australian grape growers and winemakers to adopt a highly recognisable international environmental standard’, Dr Thomson said.

According to Mr Marc Allgrove, McLaren Vale Grape, Wine and Tourism Association Consultant Chief Executive, ‘McLaren Vale has established an environmental stewardship and sustainability program covering more than 50 per cent of our annual production’.

‘McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia is the first and only Australian sustainability program focused on viticulture and, now in its fourth year, it has delivered tangible improvements to the profitability and performance of McLaren Vale grape growers’, Mr Allgrove said.

‘The next step is to have our program receive international certificationand all of the benefits that external benchmarking and recognition can deliver.

‘McLaren Vale is undertaking this work on behalf of all Australian wine regions. We want Australian wine to be internationally recognised as environmentally, socially and economically sustainable. By helping all regions understand how to obtain ISO certification, we can contribute to a stronger international reputation for excellence for Australian wine’, Mr Allgrove said.

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 Background


GWRDC invests in and directs research, development and extension (RD&E) along the whole value chain ‘from vine to glass’ to support a competitive Australian wine sector.

We collaborate with key stakeholders to coordinate and direct investments to best address the sector’s RD&E priorities. GWRDC is funded by levies paid by grapegrowers and winemakers and the Australian Government, that provides matching funds.

On 1 July 2014, GWRDC will merge with Wine Australia to form the Australian Grape and Wine Authority (AGWA). AGWA will continue to invest in and direct RD&E to meet the needs of the Australian wine sector.

 

For further information:
Abbey Flanagan, Communications Coordinator / Ph: 08 8273 0500 / 0401 082 124 Email:  abbey@gwrdc.com.