Grape and wine businesses welcome review of pregnancy warning proposal

The Australian and New Zealand Ministerial Forum on Food Regulation (the Forum) has requested that there will be a further review to the proposed pregnancy warning label designed by Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ).

This is a result of a concerted effort by our industry, led by Australian Grape and Wine (AGW), and supported by Wines of WA and Regional Associations in WA. I also acknowledge the hundreds of WA wine producers who wrote letters to their local state and federal MPs outlining their opposition to the proposed design of the label.

AGW CEO Tony Battaglene noted, “ Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is an issue that we take very seriously. We have publicly supported the adoption of a mandatory pregnancy warning label throughout this process, and have joined the Australian Government in investing in the DrinkWise FASD Awareness program to help drive greater awareness and understanding of FASD. However, the label designed by FSANZ was the worst possible outcome for wine businesses, and particularly those small family owned businesses that make up the majority of our sector”.

This now provides an opportunity for FSANZ to further review the design to ensure it provides an effective message to consumers while not imposing significant cost impacts on Australian wine producers, many of whom are small business with little scope to absorb such costs or pass them on to consumers.

This provides a good example of how industry representation and alignment on an issue supports producers to ensure regulation and legislation is developed with their concerns considered.

AG&W’s full media release can be downloaded here.

Larry Jorgensen
Chief Executive Officer
Wines of WA

E – [email protected]
T – +61 448 884 161