Anxious wait for grape growers

Anxious wait for grape growers

21 March 2011

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Australia — Wine grape growers are continuing to invest in this year’s crops, even though they might be worthless.

Growers are harvesting grapes in the Pyrenees and Grampians regions in western Victoria.

At the same time the Department of Sustainability and Environment has been completing burn offs, aimed at protecting life and property.

But the smoke from the burns off can ruin wine grapes, creating wine that tastes like ash.

Grampians Winemakers vice president Damien Sheehan says he won’t know whether his wine is affected until it is bottled.

He says there have been days when a smoke haze from burn offs has settled over vineyards.

“You put 12 months into it and you get this far, and you remain optimistic I suppose and just hope for the best.”

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