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Mothballing vineyards

Mothballing vineyards is a practice undertaken to maintain a non-producing vineyard in such as way that will allow to a rapid return to productive cropping in future.

There are several resources available that provide information on mothballing. 

Project report: Mothballing the vineyard

In 2008, Murray Valley Winegrowers’ Inc in co-operation with a number of other stakeholders developed a project to investigate the impacts of oversupply pressures and develop a number of methods for collecting information about “mothballing”, that would inform growers interested in using the techniques of the potential risks involved. 

The Final Report gives a detailed summary of the methods used to collect information on “mothballing” and the results of the main activities which include:

  1. A literature review detailing minimal input viticulture
  2. A growers survey to benchmark the changes in vineyard practice due to oversupply pressures
  3. Potential “mothballing” techniques formulated by participants in an industry forum, and
  4. The trial design and results of various “mothballing” techniques put into practice.

See the project page and download the report here

Mothballing the Vineyard - Actions & Impacts (Murray Valley Winegrowers' Inc) 

Through the project linked above, Murray Valley Winegrowers' Inc developed a factsheet and checklist with a summary of information on mothballing and potential techniques.

Visit the Murray Valley Winegrowers' website here to download a copy.


The Australian Wine Research Institute's library service has developed an information pack containing the three following articles from wine sector publications. Click here to download a copy through the Australian Wine Research Institute.

  • 'New Zealand considers the cost of mothballing'. 2011. Australian & New Zealand Grapegrower & Winemaker 573: 42-43. (TR 196.33)
  •  Kennedy, U. 2011. 'Mothballing vineyards – why, how and why not'. Wine and Viticulture Journal. 26(3): 49-50. (H 14899)
  •  Thorpe, J. 2006. 'Managing changing marketing conditions for winegrapes – an Adelaide Hills case study'. Australian Viticulture: Practical Vineyard Management. 10(5): 25-27. (H 4652)


In providing this information, Wine Australia  is engaged in disseminating information, not rendering professional advice or services. Use of any of these treatments are at your own risk and you may wish to seek professional advice. Wine Australia expressly disclaims any form of liability to any person  in respect of anything done or omitted to be done that is based on the whole or any part of this informat

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This content is restricted to wine exporters and levy-payers. Some reports are available for purchase to non-levy payers/exporters.