12 December 2011 – Hunter Valley Wine Industry Association’s committee wants to oust AGL as a member because of its lack of collaboration with the wine industry.

HVWIA president, Mr Andrew Margan, said: “The HVWIA accepted AGL as a member in 2010 on the understanding it wanted to work with us for the betterment of the overall Hunter Valley wine industry. Since then, there’s been no evidence of the mining and wine industries being able to work collaboratively or co-exist”.

The association and the Hunter Valley Protection Alliance is lobbying the NSW government to implement a “ring-fencing” policy to protect identified vineyard areas of the Hunter Valley through the exclusion of any form of over development or industrial activity including coal seam gas exploration and mining.

Excluding mining activity in these vineyard areas is in line with actions already taken by the state governments of South Australia and Western Australia to protect the Barossa Valley, McLaren Vale and Margaret River wine growing regions.