Port Lincoln welcomes new crushing facility

CRUSH: Andrew Blackberry, Mary Ford (Boston Bay Wines), David OLeary (OLeary Walker Wines), Peter Teakle, Liz Heidenreich and Ben Teakle (Teak Corp) overlook the crusher in action. Photo: Ann Clarke

CRUSH: Andrew Blackberry, Mary Ford (Boston Bay Wines), David OLeary (OLeary Walker Wines), Peter Teakle, Liz Heidenreich and Ben Teakle (Teak Corp) overlook the crusher in action. Photo: Ann Clarke

The Eyre Peninsula has received a boost as a wine-producing region with the construction of a new multi-million dollar crushing facility which went into operation recently.

The 100 tonne crush facility started operation at Peter Teakle Wines and will allow local grapes to be crushed and processed within hours of being harvested.

This is in contrast to previous years when grapes were transported to the Clare Valley in refrigerated trucks at significant cost.

The 1200 square metre facility includes a membrane bag press for pressing white grapes, a basket press for processing red grapes and a de-stemmer capable of crushing 25 tonne of fruit per hour.

The facility will employ six people.

As well as crushing for Peter Teakle Wines, the facility will be made available to process fruit for other local producers.

I now get to 'literally' see the fruits of our labour harvested right in front of me and then processed by Liz in this incredible on-site facility.

Peter Teakle

Peter Teakle Wines chief wine maker Liz Heidenreich said the first crush went very well.

"History has been made with this being the first winery on Eyre Peninsula," she said.

"With Peter's vision to create another wine region for South Australia, this is a huge step towards achieving that and we are all very excited to be a part of it."

The facility took three months to build with more than 40 contractors on site most days.

Boston Bay Wines used the winery within the first few days of operation and manager Tony Ford said the winery would save money from transporting grapes, which included paying for tubs and bags.

He said Mr Teakle should be credited for his vision and the crushing facility was a "missing link" for the local industry.

Peter Teakle Wines owner Peter Teakle has been involved in the wine industry for more than 50 years and said the new facility was "history making".

"I now get to 'literally' see the fruits of our labour harvested right in front of me and then processed by Liz in this incredible on-site facility," he said.

"I couldn't be prouder of what we have achieved already."

Peter Teakle Wines plans to open a cellar door in the coming months which will employ more casual staff.

This story Boost to EP wine region first appeared on Port Lincoln Times.