Over the past three years, a new Australian wine producer has opened for business every 55 hours.

There are now 1798 wineries across Australia, according to the 2004 edition of Wine Industry Directory. The top 20 companies account for 89% of sales of branded wine and 94% of exports, however.

Fewer than 30% of the total produce sparkling or fortified wine.

Australian wineries are becoming increasingly IT-minded, with 64% of the total now having a website, compared with 37% three years ago, while 88% have an email address.