An $870,000 project to demonstrate emerging wine industry technologies will be undertaken in South Australia thanks to a partnership between the Marshall Liberal Government and Wine Australia.
The Marshall Liberal Government has committed $200,000 to establish AgTech demonstrations in the Barossa at Nuriootpa and in the Riverland at Loxton.
Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development David Basham announced the program during a visit to the Barossa and said having the AgTech project based in South Australia is a win for the wine industry.
"There are enormous opportunities for the state's primary industries to increase productivity, profitability and remain competitive on the international stage through uptake of AgTech on-farm," said Minister Basham.
"By partnering with Wine Australia, the Government will showcase AgTech solutions at the State's Barossa and Riverland research farms focused on supporting our grape and wine producers.
"We want wine grape growers to be able to see new technology in action on a working vineyard and demonstrate the return on investment of the products for their business. This is a unique project for the wine sector that is being run in South Australia but with national benefits.
"The Marshall Liberal Government is committed to working with farmers to increase the uptake of AgTech on-farm and we've already established AgTech demonstration farms at Struan, Kybybolite and Loxton, as well as an AgTech start-up hub in the Riverland."
Wine Australia Chief Executive Andreas Clark said the partnership will strengthen the wine industry.
"This project, which is being initiated in South Australia but will be activated nationally, will strengthen the wine sector by increasing its familiarity with, and confidence to adopt, relevant AgTech solutions that will optimise grape and wine operations," he said.
"By partnering with the South Australian Research and Development Institute, the first state-based collaborator and other agencies nationally, the AgTech solutions showcased to South Australian wine producers will be tested to ensure they are regionally appropriate and are technologically feasible.
"AgTech is a priority for both the South Australian Government and Wine Australia. There are significant economic gains to be made if Australian wine and grape producers can capitalise on the implementation of AgTech solutions.
"We hope to enable this by using practical AgTech demonstration in vineyards that de-risk investment in the right solutions."
Government of South Australia support comes from the South Australian Wine Industry Development Scheme ($116,000) and SARDI research ($84,000).