Heathcote Winegrowers Association president Phil Meehan anticipates a good season ahead.ZACH HUBBER May 9, 2014 3:10am
Heathcote Winegrowers Association president Phil Meehan samples a batch at his Meehan Vineyard. Photo: ZACH HUBBER
The above average rainfall last month has provided a boost to grape vines across the region before winter.
Heathcote Winegrowers Association president Phil Meehan said he expected excellent wine varieties across the district.
‘‘The rain a few weeks ago (on April 10) did slow things down a bit, however it hasn’t had any detrimental effects that I’m aware of,’’ Mr Meehan said.
‘‘It’s a very strong vintage which has lasted the best part of three months.
‘‘I’d have to say three years ago was a shocking year because of the mildew pressures.
‘‘2012 was warm and dry and the quality was excellent.
‘‘In 2013 we had a little bit of rain and the quality was just superb.’’
Mr Meehan expected his vineyard to produce a quality similar to last year’s.
‘‘Some vineyards were affected by early frosts and several had substantial losses,’’ he said.
‘‘Speaking for myself, I was only slightly affected.’’
Meanwhile, the The Winemakers Federation of Australia has questioned the Australian National Preventative Health Agency’s suggestion to lift the wine tax.
A report the agency released on Thursday argues preferential treatment of wine, particularly at the lower-value end, is likely to be contributing to social and health harms.
While the WFA shared the community’s concern about alcohol-related harm, it claimed the agency’s report did not have clear evidence to support lifting the tax.
Federation chief executive Paul Evans said it was a simplistic response to a complex problem.
‘‘The wine industry is already doing it tough and an increase in taxation at this time is the wrong approach,’’ Mr Evans said.
‘‘The report brushes over disputed research over whether or not at-risk consumers are price sensitive and this is a significant issue because lifting the tax penalises everyone, including the majority of responsible drinkers and the local Australian wine industry winemakers and grape growers.
‘‘Just because some wine is sold at a low price doesn’t necessarily mean it is being irresponsibly consumed.’’
The facilitator of a new program to help empower women with a disability to become leaders in the community says it is time to stand up.
The Mulwala Lions had satisfying and hard fought win, in difficult conditions, against last year’s grand finalists at Lonsdale Reserve on Saturday.
The second annual Bonnie and Clyde Rods, Rats and Rides Festival fired up at Tatura Park at the weekend (April 11-12), drawing thousands of petrol heads and rockabilly music lovers to Tatura.
The centenary celebrations of the Gallipoli landings was a very personal time for Echuca’s Marilyn and Rex Carr as they toured battlefields which are still household names in Australia.
Hundreds rose early for Dawn Services across the district on Saturday to commemorate 100 years since the Gallipoli landings.
Kyabram and District Sportstar of the Year nominations finalised
Three local clubs get together at Kings Park.
Tributes flow for Finley's inspiring mother, friend and farming advocate Jennifer Hawkins
Heathcote police are appealing for information after a woman was injured in a hit-and-run incident on Anzac Day.
Cobram Barooga locals are being asked to host an Australia's Biggest Morning Tea to raise money for the Australian Cancer Council.
The Deniliquin Domestic Violence Liaison Committee hosted a community lunch at the ‘Rocket Park’ on Thursday to celebrate the launch of its new banner.
Widespread rain late last week and on Saturday put a smile on the faces of farmers preparing to sow crops or waiting for weeds to emerge on early-sown rye-grass.
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