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International Wine Competition to fund research

*** PRESS RELEASE ***

For immediate publication

8 May, 2006


Liquorland Top 100 International Wine Competition to fund important
wine research


In a move to further cement its commitment to the New Zealand wine industry, Liquorland Limited , owners of the country’s most established international wine competition, the Liquorland Top 100 , are contributing $ 80,000 to fund important research into New Zealand viticulture and winemaking.

Liquorland Limited, a national chain of some 75 stores and owned by local franchisees, see this as a natural development. Liquorland Merchandise Manager Andrew Bartley explains, “Though entrants have to supply three or four bottles of each wine to be judged at the Liquorland Top 100, we often don’t need to open them all so we decided to sell the surplus through Wellington auction house Dunbar Sloane and donate the proceeds to industry research.”

Recipients of the grants are the Marlborough Wine Research Centre and The University of Auckland Wine Science Programme.

The MWRC will use the funds to help establish an international research Fellowship. Dr Mike Trought, research leader for the science team, envisages that the recipient will collaborate with staff at MWRC on research appropriate to the NZ wine industry. Chairman of the Marlborough Research Centre Trust, John Marris, said," This is great news for the Wine Research Centre and the industry at large".

The University of Auckland Foundation will use the donation to explore what makes New Zealand styles of Pinot Noir distinct. The findings are designed to support grape growers and wine producers in their quest to capitalize on the developing success and importance of this grape variety to the New Zealand industry. Paul Kilmartin, Auckland University’s Director of the Wine Science Programme says, “We were already planning this research but with Liquorland’s help we can now move ahead much more rapidly.”

The initiative has the full backing of the wine industry according to Philip Gregan, CEO of New Zealand Winegrowers, “In order to continually improve New Zealand’s offering on the world wine stage, research is vital. Any initiative that gives us a greater ability to do this is welcomed and we are grateful to Liquorland for its vision in this respect.”

ENDS

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