In Australia, we know that vineyard owners are experiencing an increase in visitors to their vineyards, including those involved in the operation of the vineyard (e.g. seasonal labourers, contractors, consultants, supplier representatives, winemakers, researchers, tradespeople, inspectors, maintenance personnel) as well as marketing staff, VIPs and, of course, friends.
People can pick up pests, diseases and weeds from the soil and vines on their clothing, shoes, equipment and tyres and spread them to the next vineyard they visit. This spread could be between vineyards in different countries, states in Australia, wine regions or blocks on the same vineyard.
You have a responsibility to set the expectation for how you want your vines to be respected by your visitors. Know what practical steps you can take to protect the long-term health and value of your vines, as they are your core business asset.
Vinehealth Australia has produced a comprehensive fact sheet downloadable here to assist you to manage the risks visitation can pose to the health of vineyards at a local scale. It includes best practice biosecurity advice relevant to hosting individual visitors, small and large groups and major events, such as weddings, festivals and concerts. We urge you to take the time to read this fact sheet and update your biosecurity plans with this important information.