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Thursday, 6 December 1973
Page: 2544

Senator LAUCKE -Is the Minister for Primary Industry aware of the concern of grape growers about the prospect of disposing of their production at the coming vintage as a result of the adverse budgetary measures? Has the Government plans to meet a situation of surplus at the next vintage. If so, what are these plans?

Senator WRIEDT -I do not think it is quite accurate to claim that the problems confronting the wine grape growing industry at present result from budgetary provisions. As I understand the position it is essentially a matter of overproduction and the industry is not able to market the production at the present time. This matter is currently under consideration by the Government. I am not in a position to give any specific details of what is intended to be done other than to say that from discussions I had overseas recently it would seem that there are much better prospects for the sale of Australian wines overseas than perhaps has been appreciated in the past. This is one area to which I hope to give more attention during the coming year.

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