First posted in the University of Adelaide Newsroom on February 2017 by Crispin Savage. Read here

Low and no-alcohol wine products could bring more than 500 jobs and add $64 million a year to South Australia’s economy with the Marshall Liberal Government investing nearly $5 million to turbo charge the sector locally.

The investment will support the State’s wine grape sector, hard hit by the decline in the China marketplace and the global pandemic, as it develops new ‘lifestyle’ wine products – no or low alcohol wines, low in calories, for both new and traditional wine consumers.

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development David Basham, who visited Adelaide Hills winery Nepenthe today, said the investment would give a boost to cutting edge science and create high-quality products. “South Australia is without doubt the Australia’s Wine State this project will position our wine industry to deliver a world-class product and unlock access to significant market opportunities,” Minister Basham said. “No or low alcohol wine products are becoming increasingly popular and it’s predicted the sector could create more than 500 jobs and add tens of millions of dollars a year to South Australia’s economy. “The South Australian wine sector has faced a range of global challenges over the last two years, with the diversification of the marketplace vital in meeting those issues head on while harnessing changing consumer demand. “The first step in the delivery of this project will be the establishment of a research facility at the University of Adelaide’s Waite campus. “This will be the only trial scale facility in Australia and will provide a significant competitive advantage for the South Australian wine industry.”

The project will be delivered in partnership with Wine Australia, the Australian Wine Research Institute and the University of Adelaide. “Wine Australia is pleased to be part of this collaborative initiative to help companies innovate in an exciting growing market opportunity for the sector,” Wine Australia CEO Dr Martin Cole said. AWRI Managing Director, Dr Mark Krstic, agreed, adding that investing in this exciting new product category will capitalise on its significant growth potential in domestic and export markets. “This funding will enable industry to undertake pilot-scale production of new no and low alcohol products and better understand the market opportunities in this consumer segment,” he said. University of Adelaide Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Peter Høj AC added: “We are delighted to be part of this State Government supported initiative bringing together three world-class organisations to make South Australia a leader in low and no alcohol wine research and product development.”

Minister Basham said other components of this exciting project would research process and sensory optimisation of the products and closely examine the market to unlock future opportunities. “This collaborative project is a reflection of the Government’s Growth State agenda,” Minister Basham said. “It adopts new technology to grow productivity, develop a skilled workforce and create new market opportunities. “Underpinned by innovation, competition and profitability this will grow income and jobs for all South Australians.”

For more information on the NOLO project and the formation of the Technical Advisory Committee through PIRSA, have a look here

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