WFA & Australian Vignerons merge to fight industry peril Posted by: Alana House February 01, 2021 The combined threats of climate change, biosecurity and the anti-alcohol lobby have united Australia’s wine grape and wine producers in a single industry body. Australian Grape & Wine officially launched today, following members of both the Winemakers’ Federation of Australia and Australian Vignerons unanimously voting on November 13, 2018, for the two organisations to amalgamate. The inaugural Chairman of Australian Grape & Wine, Sandy Clark said: “These are challenging times for our industry. On the supply side, we have production challenges arising from ever changing weather patterns and biosecurity threats. “We also face a marketplace of uncertain, international, trading relationships and terms, and at home an anti-alcohol lobby, which is both strong and well-funded. There has never been a more compelling case for an effective, united, single national wine sector body. “This is a very positive move for the sector. For the first time Australia’s grape and wine producers have a single body to represent their interests at the national level. This will strengthen our advocacy and enable us to provide a stronger service to the sector.” Tony Battaglene, the new Chief Executive of Australian Grape & Wine added: “I am delighted to serve a united sector and look forward to representing its interests on national and international issues. We will continue to listen to our members and drive a positive and forward-looking agenda, aimed at improving profitability for the whole sector.” Australian Grape & Wine will continue to deliver on the industry’s strategic priorities, including in the areas of biosecurity, health, market access and the environment. The first Board meeting of Australian Grape & Wine is scheduled for March 5, 2019, followed by a strategy day to develop the forward work program for the Association.