Wine GI win for Wilyabrup

Sophie ElliottAugusta Margaret River Times
Cape Mentelle
PIC : Derek Pool
Camera IconVines Cape Mentelle PIC : Derek Pool

A bidfor viticultural hotspot Wilyabrup to be listed as its own sub-region with the Margaret River wine region has advanced.

On Friday, the Geographical Indications Committee made an interim determination to recognise Wilyabrup as a separate geographical indication.

A GI identifies wine as originating in a specific region, where its characteristics can be attributable to their geographic origin.

The decision is open for public comment until March 13.

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The proposal for Wilyabrup to have its own identity has been led by Cullen Wines, Fraser Gallop Estate, Lenton Brae, Moss Wood and Woodlands Wines.

Moss Wood winemaker and proprietor Keith Mugford said it was pleasing the GIC had delivered an interim ruling for a Wilyabrup GI, but noted there was still some way to go.

“There’s plenty of water to flow under the bridge before Wilybarup does finally have its own GI, but we’re off to a good start,” he said.

Cullen Wines chief winemaker and managing director Vanya Cullen said it was a good step to-wards the “protection of the Wilyabrup name”. In Australia, GIs are listed on the Register of Geographical Indications and Other Terms.

The use of terms on the register is regulated by Wine Australia through the label integrity program to ensure the truth of Australian wine labels.

If entered onto the register, Wilyabrup would become a registered GI within Margaret River; just as Albany, Denmark, Frankland River, Mount Barker and Porongurup are registered GIs within Great Southern.

If Wilyabrup becomes a registered GI, a wine with the single GI claim “Wilya-brup” will have to be made at least 85 per cent from fruit grown within the delineated boundary.

It would remain open to producers within Wilyabrup to use the Margaret River GI.

Margaret River Wine Association chief executive Amanda Whiteland said the association supported the Geographic Indications Committee’s process and would support its final determination, but noted public consultation had not yet been taken into account.

The proposed boundaries for the new GR of Wilyabrup can be viewed online at wineaustralia.com/interim-determination-wilyabrup.

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