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NZTE Funding Welcome Boost For Wairarapa Wines

NEWS RELEASE 8 November 2006

NZTE Funding Welcome Boost For Wairarapa Wines

Wairarapa Wines Promotion Group has welcomed today's announcement of $600,000 funding as part of New Zealand Trade and Enterprise's Major Regional Initiative (MRI) Fund to promote the region's wines.

Group spokesperson Cath Hopkin said the funding would provide a huge boost to the region's international marketing efforts.

"As a region that's largely made up of boutique wineries, the Wairarapa wine industry is hugely reliant on collective marketing initiatives to promote the area's premium wines and grow sales of the region's, and individual vineyards', wines.

"This funding will make an enormous difference to our efforts to promote Wairarapa wines in the international arena and will assist individual wineries to both access new markets and strengthen their position in existing ones. It will also help us to promote Wairarapa as a leading wine tourism destination."

Cath Hopkin said the funding will be used for a range of marketing activities over the next three years.

"Initiatives will include running promotions in key overseas cities, hosting top international wine writers here in the Wairarapa, and inviting major wine distributors and buyers to visit the region.

"These activities will provide a platform for individual wineries to plan their own marketing initiatives, and will create sales opportunities most wouldn't normally have access to on their own."

Cath Hopkin said the funding was recognition of the wine sector's growing importance in the region's economy.

"Over the past 25 years, Wairarapa has established itself as one of the top wine growing and producing regions in the country. Today's announcement is further recognition of the contribution Wairarapa wines make to the local economy and New Zealand's position as a producer of top quality wines on the international wine map."

The funding for Wairarapa wine promotion is part of a $2 million allocation to the region through the local economic development agency, GO Wairarapa, for regional initiatives. The balance of the funding will be used to help market and establish an international cuisine school in Wairarapa in conjunction with the prestigious Le Cordon Bleu culinary institute and UCOL.

"We're looking forward to working with the new cuisine school to promote the links between fine food and fine wine and to further position the region as a centre of excellence in premium food as well as wine production."

Wairarapa Wines Promotion Group is a representative body for the regions wineries. It comprises of Wines from Martinborough Inc and Wairarapa Wines Inc.


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