Great news… the 2021 Rosé was bottled on Tuesday!
That makes it one step closer to your glass.
But why can’t you get a glass of it this weekend, you ask?
Well, anyone who has ever seen our Rosé bottle (or who can see the picture on the left!) will know that we don’t use a traditional paper label.
Our lovely friends at Glassprint here in the hills screen print them for us. And they don’t do that until the wine is in the bottle.
In fact, it is on its way to them as I type and will be ready in time for your November club packs (and the warmer weather – fingers crossed!).
And although it is awfully pretty, it is also awfully important.
Let’s have a look at why that is…
Australian wine label requirements
Labels come in all shapes and sizes (literally), but even if you want to get a bit creative with your wine label there are a few Federal and State laws, regulations and Acts you need to adhere to, including…
- Wine Australia Act 2013
- Wine Australia Regulations 2018
- Food Standards Code
- National Trade Measurement Regulations 2009
- Competition and Consumer Act 2010
- State Consumer Laws
The bits you HAVE to include…
It can be presented on the front or the back label but it must be 3.3mm in height for a standard 750mL bottle of wine.
The Food Standards Code requires an appropriate name or description on a label. While there are no prescribed names, it must represent the true nature of the product.
To be called “wine”, the bottle must contain no less than 700 mL/L (70%) of wine!
Country of Origin
The name of the country must be included on the label. You will often see the words “Wine of Australia” or “Australian Wine” which covers off both the country of origin AND designation requirements
According to the Food Standards Code, an alcohol statement is mandatory for foods containing greater than 0.5% alcohol by volume. For a food (which includes alcoholic beverages) that contains more than 1.15% alcohol, it must be expressed as X% alcohol by volume (or something similar).
As of 20 December 2002, all wines (and food for that matter) are required to carry an allergen declaration.
Under the Food Standards Code these are the additives and processing aids which are listed as allergenic substances:
- Added sulphite (preservative);
- Casein and potassium caseinate (fining agent);
- Egg white (fining agent);
- Milk and evaporated milk (fining agent);
- Nuts (tannin made from chestnuts can be added to wines).
Name and Address
The name and physical business address of the Australian manufacturer must be included on the label.
Lot marking is necessary to in the event of a recall for health or safety reasons. If a product is not lot marked then all product carrying the same label may be compulsorily recalled by health authorities instead of just the affected batch.
A standard drink is defined as the amount of beverage which contains 10 grams of ethanol, measured at 20°C. The formula for the calculation is:
- container volume (litres) x % alcohol/vol (mL/100mL) x 0.789 (specific gravity of ethanol) = the number of standard drinks.
For example, a 750mL bottle which is 14% alc/vol would be calculated:
- 0.75 x 14 x 0.789 = 8.28, rounded to one decimal place = 8.3 standard drinks.
Handy to know! I’m sure no one will think it’s strange when you whip out your calculator and measuring jug at your next dinner party.
And a new one since we last discussed this topic…
Pregnancy warning labels
The Food Standards Code was amended on 31 July 2020 to require packaged alcoholic beverages with greater than 1.15% alcohol by volume to display a pregnancy warning mark.
There is a three-year transition period, ending 31 July 2023, for producers to start including the pregnancy warning mark on their packaging.
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The optional bits…
The vintage is the year in which the grapes were harvested. Unless they were picked between September 1 and December 31 and then you use the next calendar year (don’t ask me why?!).
The variety of wine can be included on the label as long as it’s on this list.
A Geographical Indication (or GI) is a word or expression used in the description and presentation of a wine to indicate the country, region or locality in which it originated. A list of the protected GI’s and other terms can be found here.
Basically, the regulations say that if you want to include a SINGLE vintage, variety and/or Geographic Indication then there must be at least 85% of it in the wine.
So let’s take our 2021 Somerled Pinot Noir Rose for example. It has to be made from at least 85% of Adelaide Hills Pinot Noir harvested in 2021 for us to make those claims on the label.
Claiming multiple vintages, varieties and Geographical Indications gets a bit trickier, but there are some pretty strict rules.
Taking pre-orders now!
Want to make sure you’ve got your name on a couple of bottles of the 2021 Rosé in time for summer??!
There will be a bottle in your November packs, but if you would like to add some more, please let me know via email.