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Monday 15 July 2019

What you need to know about Tasmanian Vintners

The dust has settled. Farewell Winemaking Tasmania, hello Tasmanian Vintners. 

The new company has acquired 100% of the business and assets of Winemaking Tasmania, securing the future of the Cambridge-based wine processor.

Tasmanian Vintners is jointly owned by a family company of prominent Tasmanian businessman Rod Roberts and the Fogarty Wine Group (FWG), one of Australia’s leading boutique wine businesses.

“With a strong group of contract customers and fruit growers and the shareholders’ own increasing production volumes, together with access to capital, we anticipate Tasmanian Vintners will be one of Tasmania’s fastest growing, high-quality wine businesses,’’ Roberts and Peter Fogarty said.

The business manages production for 30 boutique wine brands across the state.

“We’re committed to retaining all WT’s contract winemaking customers, taking fruit from its existing grower base and working closely with the Tasmanian producers to provide high quality processing and bottling capability in Tasmania,” they said.

Depending upon the season, the business employs between 20 and 30 employees. There are also plans for a cellar door tasting facility on site. . 

“Suppliers and customers can have confidence that the business is now well funded and committed to being one of Tasmania’s most successful premium and luxury wine producers. We see enormous potential for the Tasmanian wine industry. It has rapidly strengthened its reputation for outstanding pinot noir, chardonnay, sparkling wines and other varietals.” 

Winemaking Tasmania went into voluntary administration in May. 

The employment of former CEO Jonathan Lord has been terminated by the administrators and he will not have any further role in the operation of the business.

Tasmanian Vintners Pty Ltd is 50–50 owned by a Rod Roberts’ family company and FWG.

Businessman Roberts also operates a medium-sized vineyard near Swansea on Tasmania’s east coast, while FWG encompasses Lake’s Folly in the Hunter Valley, Evans & Tate and Deep Woods Estate in Margaret River and Millbrook in the Perth Hills. The group also operates a large wine processing facility in Margaret River.

Fogarty said his group was investing heavily in Tasmania having recently acquired the three-hectare Lowestoft vineyard at Berriedale in HObart's northern suburbs. 

It is also establishing a new vineyard site in Gilling Brook Road, Forcett, with plans under way to develop vineyards in excess of 200 hectares over the next three years.

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