22 August 2012
Wine Industry Focused On ‘Driving the Export Advantage through Sustainability’
Over 550 grape growers, winemakers and industry leaders will be gathering in Marlborough this week to attend the annual
In its 18th year, the Romeo Bragato conference is New Zealand’s most important conference for the grape growing and wine
sector, and is named after one of the pioneers of the New Zealand industry. The conference is being held at the
Marlborough Convention Centre in Blenheim, and has a comprehensive three day programme from 22-24 August.
New Zealand Winegrowers General Manager Research Simon Hooker says the industry must continue to focus on its
competitive advantage in premium wines, and profitable growth built on sound sustainable business development.
“Romeo Bragato provides an important opportunity for the industry to evaluate their international positioning, learn
from the latest research, and share ideas on how to improve their business.”
The conference theme “Driving the export advantage through sustainability” will be addressed in key note speeches and
various forums. Rod Oram, business journalist, will discuss the importance of sustainability to New Zealand. Marc
Soccio, senior analyst with Rabobank, will explore ways of thinking sustainably in grape and wine markets.
The conference programme includes technical sessions focused on quality grape and wine production. Also featured is New
Zealand’s only awards for the grape grower – the Romeo Bragato Wine Awards. The trophy winners of this competition will
be announced at the Bragato Dinner on Thursday 23 August. The diner will also include the finals of the Markhams Young
Viticulturist of the Year.
Results Announced: Wednesday 22 August
Trophies Announced: Thursday 23 August
Conference 22 – 24 August
The Romeo Bragato conference is named after a man who arrived on New Zealand shores on February 19, 1895. Fresh from
Italy with his Diploma in Viticulture and Oenology in hand, the then New Zealand Government escorted Romeo Bragato from
one end of the country to the other to visit and advise on our local vineyards. Regrettably his work was not acted on
and lay forgotten for over 60 years. Dusted off by a few pioneers in the 1970s and early 1980s, many of the
recommendations of Romeo Bragato form the basis of modern New Zealand wine regions.
For further information please visit www.bragato.org.nz