Welcome to the McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia (MVSWGA)
Exclusive access to McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing members, please click on www.sustainablewinegrowing.com.au
McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia - MVSWGA is a regional initiative organised by the McLaren Vale Grape Wine and Tourism Association to improve the sustainability of both our wine growing members and region. In 2012 the program achieved 145 vineyards representing 38% of the total grapes crushed in the McLaren Vale (or 4.5% in South Australia). The program combines data reporting, self-assessment via a workbook of viticultural practices and third-party audits. The chapters were written by local growers and peer reviewed by experts in volunteer basis. The results are being used to implement practical management changes in vineyards in Australia to improve upon our existing levels of sustainability. Click here to view the results...
Why become a member
The McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia’s goal is to provide growers with the means to improve practices in a way that optimises the sustainability of both their business and the region. The program does this by recording and rating the grower on their sustainability performance and by giving growers benchmarks and very practical pathways to keep continuously improving their everyday management practices.
By becoming a member of the program, growers received a tailored report showing their position in relation to the maximum point they can achieve, as well as in relation to the McLaren Vale’s averages. The assessment offers a clear pathway to help growers to improve their own sustainability as it proposes specific targets based on individual grower’s results. The system assesses sustainability through the triple bottom line approach (environment, economics and social) and focuses on continuous improvement of the grower and the region’s results over time.
An incredibly important dimension is that it provides growers with the ability to ascertain how well they are performing on farm currently, both in terms of absolute best practice, as well as against their peer group. This approach enables growers to assess their practices and fine-tune operations. The program embraces the differences and the varying needs of different size vineyards.
Over the last ten years, the growers of McLaren Vale have invested over two million dollars of their own money in levies through the McLaren Vale Grape Wine & Tourism Association (MVGWTA) to dramatically improve their viticultural practices, fruit quality and financial viability. This funding has been used to develop local seminars, CropWatch alerts for growers, monitoring weather stations, research trials, the Environmental Management Plan, newsletters such as Growers’ voice, among many other initiatives
While the investments in grower education made by MVGWTA yielded dramatic on-farm results for many growers, as a region we were unable to measure and discuss the outputs of these investments because we were not measuring on-farm results systematically. In 2009, Generational Farming was launched compiling the most relevant tools and information available to develop a self-assessment tool for growers to improve their sustainability. Generational Farming became the vehicle for us to measure, learn, and improve our on-going practices. In 2011, the program was re-named to McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia (MVSWGA) and the workbook results are a reflection of our efforts to present in the most useful way possible.
In 2013, McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia program became an on line system on Tuesday 7th May 2013.
The key objective of the McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia program is to improve vineyard sustainability. The program combines data reporting, self-assessment via a workbook of viticultural practices and third-party audits. Chapters were written by local growers and peer reviewed by experts in volunteer basis. The McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia program comprises of six areas with the following attributed weights:
1. Soil Health, Nutrition & Fertilizer Management 20%
2. Pest and Disease Management 20%
3. Biodiversity Management 15%
4. Water Management 15%
5. Waste Management 15%
6. Social (Work, Community and Wineries relations) 15%
The program was developed in the spirit that sustainability for us is about developing the McLaren Vale region vineyards, preserving and/or improving the land, increasing the quality of our grapes, meeting the requirements of the wineries, optimizing the use of inputs relative to on farm returns and minimizing potential negative impacts on the environment. The program also aims to promote regional social development and well-being of the people who live in our community. The completion of the McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia workbook and the data reporting is used to classify each vineyard in four possible sustainability categories (Blue, Green, Yellow and Red)
Registrations to join the 2013 season of McLaren Vale Sustainable Winegrowing Australia are now open, click here for details.
McLaren Vale Grape Wine & Tourism Association
PO BOX 169, McLaren Vale SA 5171
Phone: 08 8323 8999
Fax: 08 8323 9332
Working hours: Mondays and Wednesdays from 9am to 5pm