Volume 56 | October 8th 2020
The New South Wales Wine Industry Association represents the interests of all NSW wine producers and grape growers. Our aim is for the NSW Wine Industry Association to advocate for the NSW Wine Industry and provide information and a sense of belonging to our members.
Last week, 16 judges tasted a record number of entries (904!) into the 2020 ICC Sydney NSW Wine Awards. The results have now been checked ... and double-checked ... and the preliminary results listing the medal winning wines have been published on our website HERE.

We have also created a media release, which has been distributed today.
Many congratulations to all the wines that have won medals this year.
The 65 wines that have won a gold medal will now move on to the next stage of the Awards, the 2020 ICC Sydney Wine Awards Presentation Luncheon, where the top 2020 trophy winners will be announced on Friday 23 October at ICC Sydney.

Guests at the 2020 ICC Sydney NSW Wine Awards Presentation Luncheon will get to taste a large range of this year's award-winning wines, accompanied by a delicious lunch. They will hear details of the judging process from the judges themselves and be the first to hear who has won the 2020 trophies, including the ultimate NSW Governor’s Trophy for Best in Show and title of ‘2020 NSW Wine of the Year’.

Join in the celebrations by booking tickets at https://2020nswwineawards.eventbrite.com.au
The NSW Government has committed $15 million to an expanded AgSkilled 2.0 program, driving the productivity, profitability and competitiveness of NSW agriculture through training and upskilling across five agricultural industries including the NSW wine industry.

For the first time the NSW Wine Industry is included in the AgSkilled program effectively contributing $3m in skills and training over the next three years for NSW wine industry members.
NSW Wine President Mark Bourne commented "After successful talks with Minister Lee and his team we are very pleased with the support from the NSW Government Department of Education for important wine industry training and skills over the three years across regional NSW" 
Minister for Skills and Tertiary Education Geoff Lee has confirmed that AgSkilled 2.0 will continue to 30 June 2023. Visit the NSW Government website HERE

Mark also said, "NSW wine is currently in discussions with registered training providers to deliver urgent training for the industry this vintage as well as longer term goals for the industry and we hope to announce the first round of funded training very soon."
The National Wine and Grape Industry Centre (NWGIC), an alliance between Charles Sturt University, the NSW Department of Primary Industries and NSW Wine will be showcasing its research to benefit the wine sector.
The NWGIC Research Update will be held on Wednesday 28 October from 10am to 11:30am.
Centre Director Professor Leigh Schmidtke said, “The research being presented will be relevant for Australian wine regions and the online presentation means you can join in from wherever you are.”
“This is an opportunity to find out about emerging technology that will help make decisions in the vineyard and the winery in the future. One project is developing a smartphone app to help identify and manage nutrient disorders, there’s also new techniques for assessing the levels of bunch rot contamination and measuring different forms of Copper (Cu) in wine."

Applications for Round 2 (2020–21 financial year) for the Wine Tourism and Cellar Door Grant are now open, closing at 5.00pm (ACDT) on Friday 30 October. The objective of the Wine Tourism and Cellar Door Grant is to support wine producers who add value by attracting visitors to wine regions, and thereby encourage wine tourism.

Wine producers who have met the eligibility criteria in the preceding financial year will be able to access an annual grant of up to $100,000 (GST exclusive) for their eligible rebatable domestic cellar door sales.
To see the eligibility criteria, program guidelines and how to apply, visit Wine Australia's website HERE
The inaugural Vineyard of the year Awards, run by Young Gun of Wine, are now open. These new awards are aimed at celebrating our best vineyards and the people who tend them, and also creating an opportunity to lead change and innovation in the industry and grow the consciousness of consumers.
There are four awards: one for vineyard innovation, highlighting novel approaches to farming grapes; new vineyard of the year, recognising a young vineyard (less than ten years old); old vineyard of the year, given to an established site (more than 35 years old); and vineyard of the year, for the most outstanding entry.

The judging panel will agree on a shortlist of vineyards that will then be inspected by at least one of two independent viticultural consultants in each state, who will report back to the panel. The panel will then decide a list of finalists that will be promoted through a media and communications campaign, culminating in the announcement of the four award winners by early 2021 (date TBC).
Organisers say, “These awards will help draw consumer attention to the critical role vineyards play in producing great Australian wines. They will also support growers challenging accepted thinking about how grapes are produced. I’d encourage anyone who feels their contribution to the sustainable production of great wine is worthy of recognition to enter.”
“True sustainability is about supporting like-minded people in our community to encourage new levels of achievement. This award celebrates, through its entries, spontaneous bottom-up approaches to sustainability in our wine industry. Bottom up changes are much more likely to promote meaningful change, so these awards will inspire others to become better growers. If you believe in what you’re doing in the vineyard, you have the obligation to share it and showcase the results of your work.”
Applications are now open for the:

  • Sydney Royal Wine Study Scholarship
  • Sydney Royal Wine Professional Development Scholarship

Applications close 1 November 2020.
The Sydney Royal Wine Committee, in conjunction with the RAS Foundation offers two national wine scholarship programmes supporting students and professionals passionate in establishing careers in the Australian wine industry.

Sydney Royal Wine Study Scholarship - this Scholarship supports aspiring Australian wine leaders with a desire to play an active role in the future of our wine industry. Whether you are studying at University, TAFE or a VET course, on campus or by distance learning applicants should demonstrate a strong wine industry career pathway through their chosen course of study.
Sydney Royal Wine Professional Development Scholarship - previously known as the Sydney Royal Wine Assessment Scholarship, this scholarship encourages and supports professionals who are passionate about the Australian wine industry and are looking to further develop their skills and expertise.
Applicants can apply to fund courses such as the Australian Wine Research Institute's (AWRI) Advanced Wine Assessment Course (AWAC), AWRI Advanced Viticulture course and WSET courses.
Apply today for a scholarship of up to $6,000. Click HERE
Whilst we have been delighted with success of the 2020 NSW Wine Awards, our other awards, the 2020 NSW Sommelier’s Wine List Awards, has unfortunately been negatively affected by the current Covid-19 situation, with a large reduction in restaurant entrants this year.
We have taken restaurant feedback into account and have made the decision to postpone (not cancel) the awarding of the NSW Sommelier’s Wine List Awards.
We are absolutely clear in our pursuit of continuing to support the On-Premise Channel, particularly in our home state, and we are working with the RCA to create a series of activities and communications that should do this during the rest of 2020.

However, we won’t reinstate the awards until 2021 (date to be confirmed) when hopefully the restaurant industry is in a much more positive environment.