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AUS: McGuigan Simeon sees '07 harvest down a third

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McGuigan Simeon Wines' 2007 harvest has come in a third down on last year's.

The company, which earlier this year posted a 62% dive in operating profit for the last six months of 2006, said today (1 June) that this year's wine crush totalled 158,000 tonnes - a 33% slide on 2006. McGuigan Simeon has subsequently downgraded its earnings despite "the strong operational and structural progress we have made in the business this year".

"A 30% lower crush cuts all the way through our business and means we are now looking at a A$4m (US$3.3m) to $6m loss for the 2006/2007 year," said company CEO Dane Hudson.

"What is clear is that we have to be even more efficient. To help achieve that, we have decided to invest significant capital to increase the efficiency of the Buronga Hill Winery generating further production and overhead savings," Hudson continued.

The company is well-positioned to outperform as balance returns to the market, Hudson noted, thanks in part to a mix shift to higher-priced and higher-margin brands. As well as sales growth in the UK and Ireland from new distributors including Waverley TBS.

Hudson also noted that this year's Australian harvest is the smallest since 2000.


Sectors: Wine

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