8 Oct 2008

Failed winery to be sold

3:36 pm on 8 October 2008

Receivers of a failed winery in Central Otago are to sell the processing plant and other assets.

Central Otago Vintners at Cromwell was placed in receivership last month after the company defaulted on a loan.

The high tech winery, on the site of a former meat processing plant, opened two years ago.

Director and sole shareholder, Robin Schulz, says the company's failure was due to the financial climate, funding problems associated with a 20% increase in last year's grape harvest and the withdrawal of support promised by an overseas investor.

One of the receivers, Duncan Fea, says the value of the assets is being assessed and a report will be filed by the end of November, with proposals for the payment of creditors and recommendations on the future of the company.

In the meantime, he says the winery has processed 600 tonnes of grapes from the McArthur's Ridge Vineyard, producing 450,000 litres of pinot noir wine.

Half of that has been sold to the Constellation wine company.