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Aussie Albarino is actually Savagnin

Published:  18 May, 2009

Some wine producers in Australia are mistakenly using the obscure Savagnin grape to produce wines labelled as Albarino.

The error was detected when the Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation - which supplies vines to the industry - tested samples it had obtained from the Spanish National Collection. It is thought that the mix-up happened in Spain and not Australia.

The Winemakers' Federation of Australia and the Australian Wine & Brandy Corporation said they would be working with producers to resolve the problem, and to find an appropriate name for the wines which can no longer be described as Albarino.

The WFA's director of international and regulatory affairs, Tony Battaglene, said: "There's still some work to be done, but we're confident this approach will find a good solution for growers and in a timely way."

The AWBC will be requiring exporters of wine labelled as Albarino to confirm that the products are entitled to that description.

Savagnin is found in the Jura and Savoie regions of France and is a relative of the Pinot family.