Angove Family Winemakers has been crafting certified organic wines for the past 10 years and is now regarded as one of the most significant organic winemakers in Australia.
This is set to grow even further with the first official order received from its Chinese distributor, placing it among only a handful of Australian wine producers, and certainly the largest, to export organic wine to China.
The order for Angove Organic Cabernet Shiraz, Sauvignon Blanc and Merlot will soon set sail following years of work and collaboration between Australian Certified Organic, Angove Family Winemakers and their distributor partner in China.
“Once our vineyards and winery achieved certification to the rigorous Chinese organic standard late last year it has been a slow, at times tedious, but steady process to actually receive the order and get product to market,” said Mark Ramm, export manager for Angove Family Winemakers.
“There were a lot of hurdles we needed to overcome once certification was achieved including hand applying specific Chinese supplied certification stickers to each and every bottle.
“Now that we have done this once we can streamline the process to ensure the demand potential we are hearing about is fully achieved. The organic wine market in China is potentially worth $3-4 million in additional revenue to us so we need to do it right, first time and every time.”
Australian Certified Organic is a subsidiary of Australian Organic. The company’s general manager of commercial Joanne Barber says Angove’s export to China is a significant achievement.
“Chinese buyers have a lot of confidence in food and beverages labelled with the Australian Certified Organic logo. Like Australian shoppers, they also want products that have been grown free from synthetic pesticides, genetic modification and additives and they want to support farmers who care about the environment.
“We are working closely with Austrade in China to ensure products wearing the Australian Certified Organic logo are well represented,” Joanne says.
Organic produce sales in China are currently growing at 20 percent per annum according to Austrade so the move by Angove Family Winemakers represents a significant ground floor opportunity.
Angove currently has 172 acres of organic vineyard spread across the Riverland and McLaren Vale with an additional 136 acres in conversion and more to follow the three year process as demand continues to grow.
Additionally Angove source grapes from other certified organic growers. Organic viticulture is the best way to improve soil quality and optimise water use, which creates stronger, healthier vines and better fruit.
It is more expensive but Angove believes it makes a better tasting wine and, more importantly, improves the environment for the next generation of winemakers.
Achieving organic certification is a stringent and complicated process, however Angove sees this as an essential investment in the future and part of a deeply held belief to make sure that the precious natural resources are passed on to the next generation in better condition than when they started.
The Angove organic range is one of the most widely accessible organic wine ranges available in Australia with listings in a vast number of independent and nationally controlled wine stores and fine restaurants and the plan is to roll this success out into other markets.
Angove has already shipped and sold organic wines in Canada, England, Japan, New Zealand, Sri Lanka and Scotland.