Home' The Loxton News : December 17th 2014 Contents 8 -- The Loxton News, Wednesday, December 17, 2014
Brian Walsh wears many hats. As
well as his Riverland Wine hat (chair
of this organisation) he wears the
AGWA hat, as chair of the Australian
Grape and Wine Authority.
AGWA is the peak industry
body reporting directly to Federal
Minister Barnaby Joyce on behalf
of all growers and winemakers
throughout the country.
The authority released a paper,
earlier last week, to promote dis-
cussion with grape and wine levy
payers ahead of developing AGWA's
Strategic Plan 2015-20.
Brian said Australia had the
resources and capability to be
recognised internationally as the
world's pre-eminent wine produc-
The following is an excerpt from
this week's release:
"We believe our two strategic
priorities should be to increase
demand and the premium paid for
Australian wine and to increase the
sector's competitiveness," he said.
"AGWA look forward to hearing
from levy payers and I encourage
them to make their views known
to either their peak representative
organisations -- Wine Grape Growers
Australia (WGGA) and Winemakers'
Federation of Australia (WFA) -- or
to their state or regional association
as we'll be consulting directly with
Written feedback on the discus-
sion paper can be submitted to
AGWA until February 20, 2015.
Consultation meetings across
Australia will be conducted from
early February until late March.
The five-year strategic plan will
be put forward to the Minister for
Agriculture by April 30, 2015.
The discussion paper, details
for submitting feedback and the
consultation meeting schedule can
be viewed on the AGWA website
Riverland winegrowers and
winemakers have recently had the
opportunity to participate in their
own strategic planning process.
The plan was issued in October.
Feedback to date has been very
positive. The plan provides a road-
map and includes several of the
key themes identified in the AGWA
The first progress report against
the plan will be issued in a series
of meetings throughout the region
The industry is facing a number
of obstacles and challenges.
These can be overcome but it
is up to all of us to work together
methodically and with a strong
sense of collaboration to ensure
that all industry plans have a simi-
lar thrust or direction.
The only way this can happen is
if those whose livelihoods depend
on the success of the industry share
the thoughts that mostly occur to
them while sitting in the tractor.
Don't let yourself down and don't
let Brian Walsh and his AGWA team
down. Get involved.
All thoughtful contributions will
be recorded and presented to the
As indicated above, written sub-
missions will be received right up
until February 20, but don't leave it
to the last few weeks.
You will receive plenty of encour-
agement via this column.
There will also be a chance to
meet directly with AGWA manage-
ment and board representatives in
Please send your thoughts to PO
Box 444 Loxton or email Riverland
au) or phone 8584 5816. Copies
of the discussion paper are also
available from the office at Loxton
As we near another Christmas
season it is pertinent to remember
that although it is great to enjoy
a social occasion while supporting
our industry, it is important to do
so with care.
We often hear the salient advice
about sensible drinking based on
the number of 'standard drinks'.
It may come as a surprise that
most common serving sized glasses
of wine at 150ml are 1.4 standard
drinks, not one.
A typical 'stubby' of full-strength
beer is approximately 1.4 stan-
dard drinks. More information is
available on the Motor Accident
Commission's website (mac.sa.gov.
Apart from the noble goal of keep-
ing ourselves and those around us
safe, the social responsibility aspect
of the wine industry is often taken
As a founding member of
Drinkwise, the wine industry takes
its social responsibility seriously.
This can be seen in the marketing
programs promoting moderate con-
sumption of wine as a pairing with
food, and inclusion of pregnancy
warnings and standard drinks guide
on wine labels and casks.
Despite evidence showing
improvement in responsible alco-
hol consumption in Australia, many
media reports tend to perpetuate
the inaccurate yet populist urban
myth that society is facing some
sort of alcohol plague.
We owe it to the sustainabili-
ty of our industry to be aware of
this; and to continue to advocate
for evidence-based alcohol policy,
rather than allowing policy-based
evidence to be accepted.
LESS TALK, MORE ACTION.
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in the making
Locals and former residents are invited to
attend the laying of a time capsule in the
Mallee next week.
Photographs and memorabilia, along with a DVD
and usb containing historical accounts and video
footage, will be placed in a capsule to be buried at
Butchers Soak on Sunday, December 28.
Lehmann said the
capsule would mark
the anniversary of the
first train service from
Adelaide to Peebinga.
It will be laid by the
railway and settlers
memorial, which was
unveiled as part of the
Brown's Well towns
Mr Lehmann said the
soak was a popular spot
"back in the day".
"It was always the
place to go for a pic-
nic or sport. The tennis
courts and football oval
were well utilised in the
heyday of the 1960s-
1970s," he said.
"The community hall, weighbridge and tennis
courts were all community funded. There was a
strong sense of community pride in this area.
"We're hoping that will be shown in what's been
selected for the time capsule -- the spirit of Butchers
The time capsule will be raised in 2039, with
young members of families still living in the dis-
trict given a "conversion pack", so they can access
the DVD and usb information even if technology
"Our intention was that whatever was put into the
capsule -- a majority of it in tech/digital form, rather
than paper -- will be of benefit and be tangible for
the younger descendants," Mr Lehmann said.
The time capsule will be lowered at 11am on
Sunday, December 28, at Butchers Soak. People
are urged to bring their own picnic lunch for the
Orders for the Gurrai to Peebinga and Rail, Post
and Water -- Stories From Brown's Well books can
be taken on the day.
Jonah's science experience
by Stephanie Gropler
Loxton High School
student Jonah Hansen
will rub shoulders
with some of the best
scientists in the country
early next year, after
being selected to attend
the 2014 National Youth
Science Forum (NYSF)
Jonah was one of 376 year
11 students selected from over
2000 people nationally to take
part in the two-week program
of activities, which is aimed
at students approaching their
final year of high school, to
inform them of their career
options in science, engineer-
ing or technology.
Jonah said he was looking
forward to the forum, which
will begin on January 5.
"From this NYSF experi-
ence, I hoping to develop some
new friends and develop some
networking between some of
the science people that can
hopefully lead me to a better
standing once I graduate from
university," he said.
Jonah, who is hoping to
study aerospace engineering
at university, went through
a lengthy application pro-
cess before being selected to
attend the forum.
Jonah first heard about the
forum through an informa-
tion session at Loxton High
School and got in touch with
the Loxton Rotary Club to
organise an application.
"I had to write an appli-
cation letter to the person
in charge of the rotary dis-
trict and the NYSF board,"
"I then had to go to district
selections in Adelaide and I
gave a prepared speech. I then
got an email saying I had been
selected and I was really quite
excited about that."
Jonah then attended an ori-
entation meeting in Adelaide,
where he learnt the finer
details of the forum.
Throughout the two-week
program, Jonah will meet
with practising scientists, par-
ticipate in debates and visit
Rotary International is
a founding partner of the
National Youth Science Forum,
with Loxton Rotary Club spon-
soring Jonah's journey.
"The cost of the scholar-
ship is $2550, of which we
are paying $1550," Loxton
Rotary Club member Bert
"I congratulate the Rotary
Club of Loxton for making
that money available."
Loxton High School student Jonah Hansen (third from left) will attend the 2015 National Youth
Science Forum next year. He is pictured with parents Mark (left) and Anne Hansen, Loxton
Rotary Club president Jenny Mills, with members Ted Sinoch and Matt Goodwin.
The railway and settlers'
memorial at Butchers
Soak where the time
capsule will be laid.
Mobile black spots
Mobile black spots in the region will be
eligible for funding proposals.
There is $100 million included in the Federal
Government's Mobile Black Spot Program, with
the selection to determine the location of new
mobile phone base stations recently starting.
Member for Barker Tony Pasin said he received
"consistent" comments that action needs to be taken
to fix mobile black spots within the electorate.
With the program guidelines now issued, Telstra,
Optus, Vodafone and other bidding parties can start
to prepare their proposals, which must be lodged
by March, 2015.
In their proposals, bidders will need to set out
the locations where they intend to build new or
upgraded base stations.
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