Program to tackle Victorian vineyard pest Phylloxera

A new program to combat a biosecurity threat to Victoria’s wine industry was launched at Mount Macedon last week.

Macedon MP Mary-Anne Thomas joined Mount Macedon Winery owner Dylan Grimes at his property to announce a $1 million state funding package to create a long-term strategy to manage Phylloxera in Victoria.

The small insect feeds on grapevine roots and leaves and can kill grapevines.

Eradicating Phylloxera was identified as a priority in the Victorian Wine Industry Development Strategy.

“Phylloxera poses a real threat to Victoria’s viticulture industry,” Ms Thomas said.

“We must tackle it head on.”

Mr Grimes said collaboration was important for dealing with the issue.

“The Victorian wine industry is a team game,” Mr Grimes said.

“We all need to be on the same side to stop the spread of Phylloxera.”

Agriculture Victoria will carry out the program over three years in Victoria’s grape-growing regions.

A key element will involve surveying vineyards to ensure they are free of the insect and zoning them as Phylloxera Exclusion Zones.

The program is being funded as part of the state’s $200 million Agriculture Infrastructure and Jobs Fund.