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Crafting sustainable wine is a holistic approach to viticulture, winery and wine business practices that minimises our environmental impact, improves the social and economic performance of our businesses and our communities, and fosters resilience across the breadth of our sector.

Sustainability encompasses the environmental, social and governance (ESG) aspects of production and business. 

Australia’s national program for grapegrowers and winemakers to measure, monitor and continuously improve their sustainability practices is Sustainable Winegrowing Australia. The program is voluntary and puts producers on the pathway to sustainability excellence, with certification to the Australian Wine Industry Standards of Sustainable Practice (for a winery and viticulture). As at 30 June 2022, participation in the program represented more than 40 per cent of total production.

Why the sector needs an ESG Investment Plan

The biggest trade and market access challenges are emerging as a result of increased scrutiny of ESG credentials — by regulators, banks, insurers, investors, and, subsequently, the major retailers and distributors. Global wine consumers are also developing a preference for wine that is perceived as “sustainable”.

For grape and wine businesses, sound ESG practices will soon be a need to have, not a nice to have.

Corporate governance expectations for small, medium and large grape and wine businesses are evolving rapidly, driving the need for businesses to increasingly demonstrate that they are meeting global demands and requirements relating to their ESG credentials. 

With ESG activities a critical strategic need, Wine Australia worked together with the sector to develop an ESG Investment Plan to ensure the sector can sufficiently respond to existing and emerging ESG requirements. 

The ESG Plan has been informed through broad consultation with our sector and outlines five pillars to invest and focus development. As the sector informed us, these are in order of priority:

  1. practical ESG support
  2. certification and market access
  3. sustainable packaging
  4. innovation for ESG outcomes, and
  5. marketing and market insights

The sector’s collective ambition is to be globally recognised as the world-leading sustainable grape and wine sector. To realise this ambition, Wine Australia will collaborate and co-invest in projects outlined in the ESG Plan, with some initiatives benefiting not just the grape and wine sector but Australian agriculture more broadly. 

Refer to the ESG Investment Plan for more detail.

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

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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.