Two organisations secure funding

Happy: Barossa Grape and Wine Association brand strategy officer Amanda Longworth and CEO James March with Barossa Council Mayor Bob Sloane and manager tourism services Jo Seabrook at the Barossa Visitor Centre.
Happy: Barossa Grape and Wine Association brand strategy officer Amanda Longworth and CEO James March with Barossa Council Mayor Bob Sloane and manager tourism services Jo Seabrook at the Barossa Visitor Centre.

The Barossa Valley is set to solidify itself as one of the state’s top tourist destinations with a funding injection that will help boost tourist numbers.

Two organisations in the region have been successful in securing funding through the federal government’s International Wine Tourism Competitive Grants Program.

The Barossa Council will receive $175,000 to upgrade the Barossa Visitor Centre, while Barossa Grape and Wine Association will receive a total of $841,000 over two years for their Barossa first project.

Upgrades to the visitor centre will include a video wall showcasing the regions tourist attractions, a pop-up Barossa Makers Table featuring winemakers and producers, a wine display, improvements to the outdoor space and an expansion of the Barossa Made gift shop.

The centre will also swap places with the library to capitalise on foot traffic.

The Barossa Council tourism services manager Jo Seabrook was thrilled with the announcement of the grant.

“Our mission is to inspire our guests to stay longer, participate in more activities and invest more into our local region.

“This project will allow us to refresh our tourism offering by creating a more engaging and interactive visitor experience.”

Elsewhere, the BGWA aims to increase international culinary tourism and wine exports for the region.

Its “The Belonging” project will be a highly targeted campaign that will increase awareness of Barossa as a quality wine and food experience for in large export markets such as the United States and China.

The campaign will first be informed by research conducted by the University of South Australia and the University of Adelaide.

BGWA chief executive officer James March said the program’s research component would increase the chance of significant growth for the region.

“The research component of the campaign will provide quantified consumer trend information on which to base our region’s wine tourism developments and marketing,” he said.

Data from the National Visitor Survey released in April last year showed that in the 12 months to December 2016 the Barossa attracted 199,000 domestic visits, with guests staying 493,000 visitor nights.