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Overview

A new Australian Wine Industry Code of Conduct was launched in December 2008.  It was developed by Wine Grape Growers Australia (WGGA) and the Winemakers’’ Federation of Australia (WFA) in the interests of a sustainable Australian wine industry following a recommendation by a Federal Senate enquiry in 2005.  The research and development of the Code was supported by the Federal Government’s Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry.

The aim of the voluntary Code is two-fold: firstly to establish a common Australian wine grape supply contract framework and secondly, to provide a dispute resolution system to manage disagreements which exist over price or quality assessments.  The minimum requirements set out in the Code have been agreed to by the lead industry organisations for both grapegrowers and winemakers.

All elements of the Code apply to new contracts and major variations of agreements between grapegrowers and signatory wineries about the sale and purchase of wine grapes from the 2009 vintage and beyond.

Signatories

WGGA recommends to growers the following 40 winemakers who are signatories to the Code:

Signatories Joining Date
Campbells Wines Pty Ltd Jan-14
Lion – Wine Pty Ltd Dec-13
Lowe Wines Dec-13
Samarkan Pastoral Co Pty Ltd t/as Coombe Farm Dec-13
Voyager Estate (WA) Dec-13
Dorrien Winemaking Sep-13
Kirrihill Wines Pty Ltd Sep-13
Brown Brothers Milawa Vineyard Pty Ltd Jun-13
Cheviot Wine Group Jun-13
Cumulus Wines Pty Ltd Jun-13
Difabio Estate Wines Pty Ltd Jun-13
Eden Road Wine Company t/as Eden Road Wines Jun-13
First Creek Wines Jun-13
Fleurieu Vintners Pty Ltd t/as Boar’s Rock Jun-13
Fowles Wine Jun-13
Fox Gordon Pty Ltd Jun-13
Gemtree Vineyards Pty Ltd Jun-13
Heartland Wines Pty Ltd Jun-13
Limestone Coast Wines Pty Ltd Jun-13
Serafino Wines Jun-13
Shaw and Smith Pty Ltd Jun-13
Shingleback Wine Pty Ltd Jun-13
Tahbilk Pty Ltd on behalf of The Tahbilk Group Jun-13
Trentham Estate Jun-13
Bleasdale Vineyards Pty Ltd May-13
Colbinabbin Estate Vineyard Management Pty Ltd May-13
Ramco Wine Group Mar-13
Wirra Wirra Vineyards Dec-12
Yalumba Wine Company Dec-12
Ballast Stone Estate Wines Nov-12
d’Arenberg Pty Ltd Oct-12
Seppeltsfield Wines Pty Ltd Oct-12
Tinlins Wines Pty Ltd Oct-12
Rusden Wines Mar-11
Henry Holmes Wines Pty Ltd Dec-09
Balnaves Vineyard Services Pty Ltd t/as Balnaves of Coonawarra Oct-09
Treasury Wine Estates Aug-09
Tyrrell’s Vineyards Pty Ltd May-09
Pernod-Ricard Winemakers Mar-09
Accolade Wines Jan-09

(Last updated 10 February 2014)

More information

For further information please visit the the Australian Wine Industry Code of Conduct website or download relevant document below.

You can also view our Selling your winegrapes webpage to view a number of resources that can help growers to negotiate with grape purchasers.

Review of wine grape contracts

In 2013 WGGA undertook a review of a small sample of wine industry contracts, to determine the extent to which they complied with the Australian Wine Industry Code of Conduct and provide insights into the general standard of contracts in the industry.

Overall, the contracts were found to comply with the majority of core requirements of the Code:

  • specification of price
  • terms of payment
  • identification of parties to the agreement
  • identification of grapes to be purchased
  • duration of contract

29 of the 32 provisions of the Code were met by at least 15 of the 20 contracts reviewed.

On the other hand, there was only one contract identified that fully complied with all provisions of the Code, although five stated that they were covered by the Code.

A number of concerns with the contracts were identified, as well as recommendations for future research and improvements to the Code as a result of the analysis.

 

Download Review of Wine Grapes Contracts  (2013)

 

Visit our Selling your winegrapes webpage for further information on contracts and agreements, including a checklist for questions to consider prior to signing an agreement and a sample contract template.