Cellar door sales boost wine profits

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Wineries in the Great Southern region are starting to notice a national trend towards increased growth of cellar door sales, according to Great Southern Wine Producers Association chairman Andrew Hoadley.

A recent report from Wine Australia found small winemakers had seen an increase in revenue growth for cellar door sales of 7 per cent in the 2015-16 financial year.

The report also noted an average increase in revenue for small winemakers of 12 per cent, with cellar door sales accounting for 27 per cent of revenue.

Mr Hoadley said the increases were similar to other alcohol industries.

“The growth in sales for small winemakers mirrors what we've seen happening in craft beer and craft distilleries,” he said

“Innovation and risk-taking by producers, both in the techniques they use and their marketing, has created a lot of interest and niches where small producers can work.”

Mr Hoadley said cellar doors provided a unique experience for people to enjoy.

“It also underlines the importance of wine and food tourism in bringing visitors to regions,” he said.

“People want to experience the seasonal produce of the region along with locally produced wines, to make a connection with the place.

“We’re only just beginning to explore the potential of that in (the) Great Southern.”

Zarapeth Wines owner Rosie Singer said her winery, 40km north of Albany, had seen a rise in activity at its cellar door.

“We have definitely seen an increase in our cellar door sales,” she said. “I put it down to the cafe; customers taste the wine, order a bottle with lunch, and then purchase afterwards.

“People are now being educated in what vineyards offer.

“If someone talks to the farmer or the producer, then it gives them a feel for the product and more of a connection.”

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