Plan to reduce minimum alcohol levels in wine

Posted by Nicole Eckersley on 29th April 2011

Food Standards Australia New Zealand has called for comment on a plan to reduce the minimum alcohol levels in Australian wine, after the Winemakers’ Federation of Australia applied to reduce the minimum level for flat and sparkling wine from 8% to 4.5% alcohol/volume.

“This will align Australian produced wine with the European Union, which is Australia’s largest wine export market. It will also address a regulatory disadvantage for the Australian wine industry compared to imported wine which has no minimum alcohol requirements ,” FSANZ Chief Executive Steve McCutcheon said.

The proposal does not apply to New Zealand produced or imported wine.

A risk assessment has not been completed on the basis that there are no public health and safety risks associated with this Application.

“ Based on the available information, FSANZ concludes that the benefits of the proposed amendment outweigh any associated costs,” Mr McCutcheon said.

“We are seeking further comment on the potential costs and benefits of the proposed amendment through submissions on the assessment report.”