Accolade launches website explaining $4,000/ha buyout offer to co-operative members

April 19, 2024
By Cody Profaca

Accolade Wines has today published a website outlining the proposed $4,000 per hectare buyout offer it has presented to its Riverland grape growers at the CCW co-operative. The website,, both explains the specifics of the proposal and provides CCW members with the opportunity to present any queries they might have. 

“It is critical that all growers understand the detail of our proposal and its benefits,” said Joe Russo, Chief Supply Chain Officer at Accolade Wines.

“There has been a lot of discussion of the issue confronting our industry and we need to move the focus towards action and solutions. While it has been good to meet with growers since we launched this last week, only a small proportion of CCW’s members actually attended last week’s meetings.”

Currently, existing contracts between the wine producer and the co-operative stipulate that all grapes supplied to the CCW by its 540 members must be sold to Accolade, and that Accolade must purchase all available supply. For about 25 years, Accolade has honoured this agreement for the ongoing supply of its Banrock Station brand. Now, however, Accolade has put forth a $4,000 per hectare buyout offer in what it has pitched as a solution to currently unsustainable trading conditions that are putting pressures on both growers and suppliers. 

“There is currently no other feasible option on the table that allows us as an industry to manage the outcome and our future,” said Russo.

“This package provides all growers with greater certainty and clarity. It allows us all to manage a difficult transition more smoothly, it allows those who wish to exit, to do so with dignity and those who want to continue, to do so with greater confidence.”

The proposal will only go ahead if it achieves ⅔ majority support from CCW members. In the lead up to the vote, Accolade is wanting to remind its growers that, if the proposal is passed, they will have a choice between maintaining existing contracts with the co-operative selling to other producers, diversifying their agricultural portfolio, or exiting the grape growing industry all together. 

Accolade’s proposal also promises to provide set tenure of contracts with substantial notice periods along with offering to cover the cost of CCW’s bulk wine contract, removing a significant burden from the cooperative. It will also feature fair and transparent pricing set by the Weighted District Average.

“The support of CCW members is critical. Two-thirds of them will have to vote in favour of the proposal. Without their vote, the package cannot proceed – and the risks are much higher for everyone and the outcome much more uncertain,” said Russo.

“As an industry, for us to continue as if no response is required simply isn’t sustainable. We have a shared responsibility to face into this challenge and respond.

“We’re wanting to take a constructive approach to the biggest industry challenge in many years. We’re keen to keep working with CCW and have listened and adapted in developing this package.”

Share the content