The Growth of the South Australian Wine Industry

When people are asked to list down the top ten wine-producing countries in the world, they will instantly answer France, Italy, and Spain almost immediately. To complete the list, they may add in a few more European countries and even consider Canada and the USA. More often than not, people will not include Australia in the list.

Australia is considered as the flattest and the driest inhabited country in the world because of its massive desert coverage and arid landscape. Surprisingly, Australia has consistently been among the top ten wine regions of the world. It turns out that extensive arid lands of Australia, particularly in the Southern Australian regions, can produce South Australian Wine varieties that are in demand across the globe.

Australian Wine Surprise

Not being able to guess Australia as a top wine manufacturer is normal since as compared to other countries, Australia is relatively new to the wine industry. While wine-making has been in existence during the first British settlement in 1788, it was only during the late 1800s when Australia started producing fortified wine. It was only during the 1990s when a larger percentage of Australian-grown grapes were being used to create table wine. In 1981, the Australian wine industry was exporting around 8 million litres per year. By the 1990s, the export rose to 39 million litres. This increase in wine exportation grew to 805 million litres by 2007. This export explosion of Australian wine is surprising since the domestic consumption of wine is not increasing because Australians still prefer drinking beer than wine. The reason for the significant increase in Australian wine popularity was from outside interest.

The Reason Behind the Boom. The emergence of the flourishing wine industry in Australia can be attributed to a doctor and a columnist. Max Lake, a surgeon, was credited to have brought with him the seeds that started the boutique wine production specializing in Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. The columnist was Lee Evans, who was pivotal in promoting Australian wine in London. It was because of Evans’ promotion of Aussie wine that made the British gobbled up litres and litres of them. Evans was later referred to as the Godfather of the Australian Wine Industry.

The South Australian Wine Industry Today. 

Today, the South Australian region is very important in the country’s wine industry. South Australian Wine accounts for almost fifty per cent of the entire wine production of the county.

South Australian Wine is also important because it is produced from some of the oldest vines in the world. Because of the expansive land area of Australia, the vines that were brought by the first settlers were isolated from the great phylloxera plagues that devastated entire grapevine varieties of Europe, North America and Australia’s Eastern Wine Regions.

The different soil types and geographic features of Australia also allowed for a wide variety of planting styles that results in different wine qualities and style. Likewise, the massive land area of Australia has given its Southern Regions different types of climate ranging from warm climates of the Barossa Valley to the cooler climates of the Adelaide Hills. South Australian Wine is also produced from the hot climate of the Riverland Region as well as the maritime boundaries of the McLaren Vale.

Overall, the South Australian Wine industry has a lot to offer. You have wines that are produced from very old vines and wines produced from grapes grown in different climate regions.

Email This Post