In August 2005 work commenced on a joint-funded project between the Australian Grape and Wine Research and Development Corporation (GWRDC) and the Riverina Winemakers’ Association (RWA) to audit and review winery solid waste streams management. This project was completed in December 2006 (see Solid Waste Executive Summary).  As a result of this work, two tools were developed: a sustainable procurement guide for environmentally preferred purchasing and a used packaging and recycling guide.

The project spearheaded the formation of the RWA’s One Vision Environment Program and the establishment of the Riverina wine industry’s Environment Policy and inaugural Environmental Compliance and Awareness Seminar – “helping wineries to help themselves and ensure a sustainable future for the wine industry and wider community.”

As a result of these initiatives, it has been acknowledged publicly the Riverina wine industry is a national leader on environmental stewardship – “No other wine region in Australia is able to claim such a proactive approach to environmental management,” (Winemakers Federation of Australia, August 2006). It is the partnership between the GWRDC and the RWA which has been the cornerstone to driving this progress.

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