The Shout Magazine (New Zealand)

Wairarapa Young Viticulturist of the Year announced

Annika Salenjus from Craggy Range has been named the 2024 Wairarapa Young Viticulturist of the Year for the second year running, following the competition held at Escarpment on 20 June.

James Sutcliffe, who also works at Craggy Range’s Te Muna Estate Vineyard in Martinborough, came in second.

This year the Wairarapa and Auckland competitions were combined and Leon Henson from Batch Winery, Waiheke, took out third place.

He now qualifies for the title of 2024 Auckland Young Viticulturist of the Year and will head to the national final to represent his region.

Contestants were tested on nutrition, trellising, pests and diseases, budgeting, machinery, wine knowledge, and undertook an interview.

The competition heads back to Escarpment for the 2024 National Final on Wednesday, 28 August, when winners from around the country will compete for the overall title of 2024 Young Viticulturist of the Year.

The winner will be announced at the Altogether Unique 2024 industry celebration at Te Papa on 29 August and will take home a prize package that includes a brand new Ford Ranger for a year, a $6,000 Ecotrellis Travel Grant and a Leadership Week.

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