Panel speakers of women in wine

SOUTH AUSTRALIAN winemakers descend on London

The Office of Agent General hosted 26 ‘South Australian Women in Wine’ to complement the Australian Women in Wine Awards 2017 (AWIWA), announced at Australia House the day before.

The Australian Women in Wine Awards, now in their third year, celebrate the contribution and achievements of women in this sector and acknowledge the significant role they play in all facets of the industry.

The awards ceremony, held at Australia House, was streamed live back to Australia, as it was the first time that the awards have been announced outside of Australia. It was also the largest gathering of Australian winemakers and producers in the UK. Of either sex.

The next day, four South Australian winners clutching their awards, joined more than 150 guests gathered for a trade and networking event for key retailers and distributors, press and consumers. The Blue Fin Venue provided an impressive London skyline background for the equally impressive delegation of winemakers and owners in town to celebrate the awards and position themselves in the UK market.

An opportunity to showcase the quality and diversity of South Australian wine, the event began with networking before moving onto a Q&A discussion with wine royalty Louisa Rose – Yalumba, Corrina Wright – Oliver Taranga, Prue Henschke – Henschke and Emmaneulle Bekkers – Bekkers Wines.

Agent General Bill Muirhead commented he was “delighted to see that over 50 per cent of the delegation attending the awards this year are from South Australia. These passionate and innovative women in wine play a significant role in growing our industry and are inspirational leaders to encourage greater female participation in the sector.”

Chairing the Q&A session, renowned wine expert and Wine Detective Sarah Ahmed was overwhelmed by the sheer talent and breadth of winemaker success stories in the room, “Hard though it was to capture their many and glorious achievements in an hour, I much enjoyed hosting a Q & A with the crème de la crème of South Australian wine growing and making talent.”

At the top of their game, Prue, Louisa, Emmanuelle and Corrina are true visionaries in our world of wine.”

Sarah applauded Corrina’s observation that “You cannot be, what you cannot see,” as she spoke about the future of equal representation in the wine industry and the aspirations of winemakers coming through. Sarah wrote in her blog, “Just as they say that behind every successful man is a woman, behind every successful wine is a team of wine professionals.  For women and men alike, it’s important to review how success is framed and validated and affirm different role models.”

The AWIWA recognises not only winemakers, but also viticulturists, researchers, cellar door managers, marketeers, owner/operators and workplace champions of change.”

South Australia is leading the way, as the industry has more females in top wine roles than any other Australia state and is clearly living up to its status as a “Great Wine Capital of the World”. This great accolade recognises the state’s brilliant wine country and its versatility. The prestigious network is made up of international cities whose wine regions are recognised as significant economic and cultural assets.

Minister for Agriculture Leon Bignell  praised the awards and representatives travelling to London, “The South Australia Government is proud to support South Australia’s women in wine to help grow the capacity of the industry and continue to promote the state’s rich wine culture, provenance and innovation.

South Australian Nominated – Women in Wine Awards

Winemaker of the Year – Shavaughn Wells, Saltram Wine

Viticulturist of the Year – Brooke Howell, Yalumba Melissa Brown, Gemtree Wines

Owner / Operator of the Year – Emma Raidis, Raidis Estate

Workplace Champion of Change – Carissa Major, Claymore Wines, Professor Eileen Scott, Adelaide University, Kendall Clements-Virag, Pernod-Ricard

Cellar Door Person of the Year – Jasmine Morgan, Caudo Vineyard

Researcher of the Year – Christine Böttcher, CSIRO – Agriculture & Food, Kerry Wilkinson & Dr. Renata Ristic, Adelaide University, Patricia Williamson, AWRI

Primary Industries and Regions SA were proud to support South Australia’s women in wine to help grow the capacity of the industry and continue to promote the state’s rich wine culture, provenance and innovation. Click here for booklet.