Australian Wine Law

by admin on June 23, 2011

The Australian wine industry is regulated by federal and state law such as the Wine Australia Corporation Act of 1980 and its implementing rules, Trade Practices Act of 1994, and the Food Standards Australia.

Export of wine


Exporters must obtain the prior approval of Wine Australia for wine shipments consisting of a minimum of 100 litres, regardless of the number of consignees of the entire shipment.

Export Licence: Every exporter, either an individual or incorporated body, must possess an export licence issued by Wine Australia. This licence is non transferable although an exporter may assign another exporter to ship wine as an associated exporter.

Factors that determine licence approval include:

Applicant’s financial standing
Applicant’s place of business in Australia
Ability to obtain grape products from Australian sources
Promotion of the export of grape products
Any history of cancellation of licence

Grape standards


Each grape to be exported must meet the standards and minimum requirements of Australian wine law except in two instances:

When the standard of the importing country is in conflict with Australian wine law.
When the exporter can show the shipment a compliance of the purchaser’s specifications and/or requirements of the importing country.

Product Approval


A wine exporter must first obtain export approval from Wine Australia which will require the submission of:

2 samples of the finished product
Continuing approval application
Copy of all labels
Details of analysis of wine
FOB export price

The law authorizes random checks to ensure consistency of the actual export products and the samples provided.

Export permit


Wine samples approved by Wine Australia will receive a permit number for the application of Exit Declaration Number (EDN). In addition to the EDN, wine bound for EU must be accompanied by a V11 certificate of analysis.

Applications and renewals of export licences may be done online.

Labels for Export


Each product must be labeled properly by indicating the variety in descending order of proportion. A wine variety appearing on the label indicates that at least 85% of a bottle’s contents are made up of that variety.

Products that are labeled ‘organic’, ‘biodynamic’, ‘biological’ or ‘ecological’ must be accompanied by certificates issued by an accredited organization which is authorized to verify the nature of the product.

Other laws: Specific wine production requirements for Australian wine can be found in Standard 4.5.1 of Food Standards Australia while Standard 2.7.4 specify the imported wine requirements.

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