Vinehealth Australia
eNewsletter: June 2021
Not displaying properly? 
View this email in your browser
Hello from Inca Lee

Over the past month, we've had some great opportunities to educate some of our younger industry members about biosecurity.

Suzanne McLoughlin presented to students undertaking the Grape & Wine Industry Practice, Policy and Communication subject at the University of Adelaide about the role of Vinehealth Australia and the state of play with biosecurity.

I was also delighted to have the opportunity last week to speak to Next Crop participants from Barossa and Langhorne Creek. What a great, engaged group! I outlined the role of Vinehealth Australia and then outlined the impact of a phylloxera outbreak if one was to occur in a SA region.

I spoke about the limitations on movement of machinery, equipment, grapes and other items, and demonstrated the significant economic and social impact, not to mention the death of precious vine material.

I've also been working with TAFE SA Barossa campus, helping with material for a phylloxera simulation being run for students undertaking the Certificate III in Wine Industry Operations (Viticulture).

Getting the next custodians of our industry enthused about biosecurity is really important – they can be influencers of change now in their family businesses and the organisations they work for.
Inca Lee
CEO, Vinehealth Australia

In this issue

Last issue highlight

Biosecurity 2030 launched

Commonwealth Biosecurity 2030 – the Australian Government’s roadmap to build a stronger, smarter biosecurity system – was released in May.
Secretary of the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment and Australia’s Director of Biosecurity, Mr Andrew Metcalfe AO, said it would ensure Australia’s biosecurity system stays ahead of growing biosecurity threats.
“A strong biosecurity system is all that stands between us and these growing risks,” he said.

Read more

Vineyard Owner Survey: responses needed

We’ll soon be conducting our 2021 South Australian Vineyard Owner Survey and we encourage you to take the time to respond.
The survey will seek your feedback on South Australia’s biosecurity position and the level of adoption of farm-gate hygiene practices by South Australian growers. The survey also seeks your feedback on our activities and services.
All who submit a completed response will go into a draw to win two Vinehealth Australia biosecurity signs of their choice.

Read more

Replanting, field grafting or reworking?

Are you planting or replanting a vineyard block? Are you changing the scion variety you currently have? Then we need to know.
Vinehealth Australia is required under the Phylloxera and Grape Industry Act 1995 to maintain a complete and accurate Register of vineyards in South Australia of 0.5 hectares or larger in size. Changes to your vines, including your varietal mix, need to be reported within three months of when they occur.

Read more

Vine improvement boost in Adelaide Hills

Adelaide Hills Vine Improvement Incorporated (AHVII) has a new Operations Manager, Louise Christian, who would like to encourage local growers to establish new source blocks in the Adelaide Hills, with a focus on a broader clonal selection of traditional varieties and a greater range of alternative varieties.
Louise also has ambitions to help the South Australian wine industry by developing a resource-base of clonal material that is currently available for winemakers and viticulturists, and to better understand and manage the impact of viruses.

Read more

BMSB seasonal highlights

The 2020-21 brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) season is wrapping up and Australia’s measures have remained strong against this serious pest, according to Mirage News.
Head of Biosecurity at the Department of Agriculture, Water and the Environment, Andrew Tongue, told Mirage News that half the number of live stink bugs in vessels were recorded this season, compared to the last three years.

Read more

Signs, signs,
everywhere a sign

Are you part of our biosecurity supporter network, investing in biosecurity signage for your vineyard or cellar door area?
Since we launched our popular Responsible Visitation Campaign in 2018/19, in which we designed 10 different consumer-facing signs for cellar doors, we’ve been delighted with the response. Almost 350 of these consumer-facing signs have been purchased by vineyard owners and wine companies around the country since their launch.

Read more

Levy payments soon due for SA vineyard owners

Your Notice of Assessment for the period 1 May 2020 to 30 April 2021 was recently sent to you. A reminder that payment is due by 12 July 2021. 
Each invoice carries a unique customer reference number. If using BPay, please ensure the customer reference number entered is the one recorded on your invoice/s. 
As has been the case for many years, the rate of contribution remains unchanged at $9.50 per hectare, with a minimum of $50.

Read more

$30,000 biosecurity scholarship on offer

Every year, Nuffield Australia awards scholarships to farmers to improve their knowledge. In the 2022 program, a farm biosecurity scholarship of $30,000 is being offered.
The scholarships give Australians the opportunity to study farming practices in New Zealand, Europe, Asia and the Americas and countries best suited to the scholar.
“We’re thrilled to see a biosecurity scholarship being offered as part of the 2022 program,” said Inca Lee, CEO of Vinehealth Australia.

Read more

PHA seeking Non-Executive Directors

Plant Health Australia (PHA) is seeking Non-Executive Directors to join the company.
Candidates with skills and experience in one of the following areas are encouraged to apply: Plant industry production, industry operations and marketing as it relates to Australian plant biosecurity; Plant health policy and government policy processes, plant health management; Strategic planning, business and financial management; or Corporate leadership.

Read more

Watch this

Lone Stranger biosecurity adventures

In a world where straight-shooting answers can be hard to come by, and the ever-present threat of pest or disease outbreaks looms large, who can the cotton industry turn to? A silly one for you!

Watch the video here

Biosecurity supporters

Grampians Estate, Victoria

“We are indebted to Vinehealth Australia for being so proactive in the biosecurity space to help protect our most valuable resource, our vineyards. Great Western in Western Victoria was one of the very few Victorian regions spared the phylloxera curse in the late 1890s, and as a result has vines dating back to 1866 (Bests) and 1878 (Grampians Estate). With winery tourism drawing visitors to our regions, it’s so important we educate visitors to the dangers of pests and diseases and that they can be the carriers. Biosecurity is vital for the future prosperity of our region and its individual businesses. Vinehealth should be commended for their work in keeping us safe.”

Tom Guthrie, Grampians Estate, Victoria

Biosecurity tips

  • Virus Facts #1: Grapevines host the largest number of viruses known to infect a crop plant and some of the viruses identified in grapevines infect solely Vitis species. #virusfacts #vinehealth
  • Virus Facts #2: There are more than 85 recognised virus and virus-like diseases of grapevines worldwide. #virusfacts #vinehealth
  • Virus Facts #3: The first grapevine virus seen under an electron microscope was grapevine fanleaf virus almost 60 years ago. This virus is considered eradicated from Australia and is a quarantine pest. #virusfacts #vinehealth
  • Virus Facts #4: In the 1930s it was widely believed that phylloxera was responsible for transmitting grapevine fanleaf virus. In the 1950s it was determined that the dagger nematode Xiphinema index was the vector for transmission. #virusfacts #vinehealth
  • Virus Facts #5: Australia has 10 endemic grapevine viruses. The group of grapevine leafroll-associated viruses (GRLaV) are considered to cause the most economic damage. #virusfacts #vinehealth
  • Virus Facts #6: Viruses can be difficult to diagnose, and the damage they cause can be unpredictable. Some severely damage grapevines and others cause no damage. #virusfacts #vinehealth

What is biosecurity?

Biosecurity is a system to reduce the risk of entry, establishment and spread of pests, diseases and weeds that threaten the economy and environment. It’s also a system for managing and recovering from an incursion of a pest and disease by minimising its impact through eradication, containment and ongoing asset protection. Biosecurity is a shared responsibility – we need to work collaboratively.

Copyright © Phylloxera and Grape Industry Board of South Australia,
trading as Vinehealth Australia and governed by 
The Phylloxera and Grape Industry Act 1995