New vineyard location system to help protect the State’s valuable wine industry
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A new vineyard identification system will help ensure the better protection of the State’s wine industry from a serious disease outbreak, Primary Industries Minister Ian Macdonald said today.
Minister Macdonald said the Vineyard Identification System would produce a more comprehensive record of vineyard locations throughout the State - and enable a quick and effective response to disease incursions.
"Biosecurity preparedness is a vital component of all our primary industries today, and our valuable wine industry is no exception," he said.
"By establishing better systems for recording location and size of vineyards in NSW, it enables Government and industry to better prepare for and respond to a serious pest or disease situation.
"I applaud the NSW wine industry for initiating this preparedness measure."
Minister Macdonald said NSW Department of Primary Industries and the Rural Lands Protection Boards (RLPBs) were working with the NSW Wine Industry Association to help gather information about local vineyards.
The new scheme will be based on existing systems used to identify and trace livestock, based on property identification codes (PICs) and RLPB annual returns of land and stock.
"The PICs provide a unique number for every registered property together with details of the land and contact details for the owner/occupier," he said.
"Annual RLPB returns provide a means of collecting and collating data about how that land is used for agriculture - in this case for winegrape production."
The Minister said this year’s RLPB rate return includes an additional question relating to total area of land planted to grapevines. Returns are currently being sent in.
"If, however, you are a small landholder with winegrapes, and not already paying RLPB rates, a PIC can be obtained for free for a limited time from your local RLPB office," he said.
"This initiative is an excellent example of industry and Government working together to achieve better biosecurity preparedness for our valuable primary industry sectors."
NSW is the second largest wine producing State, representing more than 30% of the $5 billion Australian wine industry. It produces about 26% of the industry’s wine grapes and a third of NSW wine by volume.
Media contact: Jason Bartlett, 0438 209 281