North East wineries have been suffering since the bushfires
With the long weekend approaching, many North East wineries are offering takeaways instead, but believe it is immensely important to welcome tourists back to the region.
A winery in Beechworth is currently reviewing plans as to how the business can cope during these uncertain times with the coronavirus.
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Tracy Richards at Haldon Estate Wines in Beechworth will only be serving takeaways ahead of the June long weekend and visitors will need to book prior to arriving.
She says, “There will be sanitation and social distancing as well as having everything outdoors, contactless payment and making sure we have contact details”.
There are some space limitations, which Tracey Richards says, “I can only have two people inside so I will be doing takeaway and outside there will be groups no larger than 6 people, and people can observe the rules as required by the Victorian Government.”
Prior to the pandemic, the bushfires shattered the industry and most of the vineyards in the area were affected by smoke taint. Due to all the smoke lingering in the air, the wineries closed because there were no tourists coming to the region.
What they have also seen is the impact it had on the hospitality industry, which the wineries in the area rely heavily on for their sales.
“Everything has just stopped completely”, says Tracey Richards. “Many of us are struggling because we are all small boutique producers so it has been very tough”.