23 January, 2020

Supply Chain & Logistics Forum discusses its future

Supply Chain & Logistics Forum discusses its future

The Drinks Association’s Supply Chain & Logistics Forum travelled to Griffith last week to discuss its future direction.

Travelling to Griffith was a great opportunity to network among peers, gain alignment and discuss the purpose of the forum moving forward, while visiting member warehouse and distribution facilities at Casella and De Bortoli.

The forum meets two or three times a year and has been created to bring together supply chain and logistics leaders from within the industry to discuss non commercially sensitive issues and opportunities that exists within broad warehousing, transport and logistics across the industry. 

The Supply Chain & Logistics Forum is provided as a service to all Category One member companies of The Drinks Association. 

Along for the trip were 14 Category One, Associate Members and Corporate Partners: Paul Morris and Karyn O’Neill from Bacardi-Martini; Tim Fraser and Richard Powell from BevChain; Brian Corner and Flaminio Dondida from Casella Family Brands, Rob Trembath from De Bortoli Wines; Brad Greer, Margaret Reynolds and Lisa Turner from Mainfreight; Robert Taddeo from Pernod Ricard Australia; Jason Spiteri from Samuel Smith & Sons; Ross Fallon from Treasury Wine Estates; and Rachel Wormald from The Drinks Association.

Day one was spent at De Bortoli Winery and Cellar Door, after attendees flew in from Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide. Host for the visit was Rob Trembath, Supply Chain Manager at De Bortoli Wines.

The day began with lunch in the beautiful garden area off the Cellar Door, followed by a tour of the winery. 

“We were also fortunate to be able to see the vintage intake process with a semi-trailer unloading cabernet grapes into the crusher,” said Wormald.

After a brief introduction, the group embarked on site tour of the warehouse and distribution area, followed by a discussion on De Bortoli's commitment and achievements on the environmental front. 

The group also learned that De Bortoli produces 2.5 million 9 litre cases of wine each year, with 20% going to export and 80% domestic. More than 130 pallets of wine leave the company’s Griffith headquarters every day, while De Bortoli house over 230 skus at their warehouse facility

Next stop was the Cellar Door, where attendees tasted (and purchased!) some fantastic wines before a traditional Italian dinner at La Scala restaurant, which has been a Griffith institution for more than 40 years.

Day two was spent at Casella Winery and Cellar Door.

After a hearty country breakfast and great Italian coffee, the forum headed to Casella in Yenda, just outside of Griffith.

Hosts for the day were Flaminio Dondida (General Manager Procurement, Distribution & Strategy) and Brian Corner (Domestic Distribution Manager).

First up, the group visited the $5 million state-of-the-art Mt Bingar Water Reclamation Facility, built by Casella in 2007 and designed for treating winery waste water.

Back at the winery, which opened in 1969, the group toured through the main warehouse and bottling facility, where more than 36,000 bottles are filled every hour. 

In the main warehouse, approximately 500,000 cases of wine turn over every four to five weeks. Given 80% of Casella's wine is exported, the group was also able to witness the loading of shipping containers – approximately 48 containers are packed daily. 

The day finished up at the Griffith Golf Club, near the airport, where the group debriefed the two-day experience.

“We had great feedback from everyone who attended,” Wormald said. “Everyone felt it was valuable to see what other people do and understand what's happening in the industry holistically.

“Members commented there was more open discussion over the two days than in all previous forums. Everyone wanted to know where the next forum would be held!”

Here are some photos from the trip:

Day One: De Bortoli

Day Two: Casella