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Thursday, 4 May 1961

Mr KELLY (Wakefield) .- I was pleased to hear the Opposition's view on this measure that was expressed by the honorable member for Lalor (Mr. Pollard). The Opposition supports the bill; it is not a big measure but is recognized by both sides of the House as a desirable piece ot legislation. My interest in it can be expressed under two headings. The first is that the electorate of Wakefield includes an important wine-growing district. lt incorporates not perhaps the biggest portion of the Barossa Valley but probably the better part of it. Secondly, I have recently returned from a visit to the United Kingdom, and while there I had an opportunity to see the need for the promotion activities to which the honorable member for Lalor has referred. There is no doubt about the quality of our Australian wines, but there is also no doubt that Australian wine loses its identity by the time it is sold. Certainly, the selling of it has lacked force. This measure is designed to remedy that situation.

After I finished the official part of my tour of the United Kingdom, I went to considerable trouble to get from Australian Fine Wines in Soho a considerable quantity of wine, the best of which naturally came from Wakefield, and distributed it to my friends. They were pleasantly surprised by the quality of the Australian wines 1 took to them. They all asked me where they could get it. They said, " We did not know that you produced such wines in Australia. We would like to obtain more. Where can we get it? ". I was able to tell them where they could buy Australian wine, but I could not say to them that its sale was being promoted with any great force in the United Kingdom. For that reason I warmly welcome this measure.

This is another case of an industry trying to help itself. The growers are prepared to raise money to do their own promotion work. That is a proper principle in theory, and also in fact. People who are levied take a greater interest in activities for which they are helping to pay. More interest will be taken in the wine promotion plans in this instance for that reason. I believe that our wine will be sold more efficiently overseas. For that reason I have pleasure in supporting the measure.

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