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Friday 9 November 2018

Tasmanians aim to learn from New Zealand wine producers

The eighth recipient of the $10,000 Dr Don Martin Sustainable Viticulture Award, presented by the Alcorso Foundation, has been announced as Cynthea Semmens of Marion's Vineyard and Beautiful Isle Wines in the Tamar Valley.

She will undertake study travel in New Zealand to investigate sustainability programs for wine and organic and biodyamic vineyard management practices.

She will also examine the decisions made by New Zealand syrah (shiraz) wine growers in relation to vineyard clonal and rootstock planting material and vineyard management.
Semmons' discoveries will be shared with Tasmanian vignerons on her return, said Wine Tasmania in a press release.

Wine Tasmania CEO Sheralee Davies welcomed the announcement of Semmens as the 2018 Don Martin Fellowship recipient.

“Cynthea’s program has been selected by the assessment panel for its practical relevance and benefits to the broader Tasmanian wine sector," Davies said.

"We thank and recognise the Alcorso Foundation for initiating this valuable program to support the development of individual wine professionals, such as Cynthea, and the Tasmanian wine sector.”

The $10,000 Don Martin Sustainable Viticulture Fellowship was initiated by the Alcorso Foundation to commemorate influential Tasmanian viticulturist, Dr Don Martin.

The Alcorso Foundation has partnered with the state’s peak body, Wine Tasmania, to deliver this Fellowship. The Fellowship is available to Tasmanian-based wine professionals to encourage research via study-based travel or localised research projects across viticulture and oenology that benefit the broader sector.

Alcorso Foundation President, Dr Caroline Alcorso, said the fellowship was made possible through a generous bequest from former CSIRO Chair, Dr Don Martin, to the Alcorso Foundation in 2007.

“Dr Martin was a great friend of my father Claudio Alcorso, and shared his passion for both improving the quality of Tasmania’s wine grapes and for the natural environment," she said.

"This Fellowship commemorates a man known for his generosity and commitment to sharing scientific knowledge for the betterment of Tasmania’s wine industry.”

The Alcorso Foundation was formed in 2001 in memory ofIClaudio Alcorso, founder of Moorilla. 

He was a pioneering and inspirational man who, like Don Martin was keenly focused on how industry could achieve social and environmental benefits for Tasmania, as well as economic prosperity. To find out more about the Foundation and its programs please visit

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