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Large Awatere Valley development block selling, with drought busting potential

March 2019

An Awatere Valley farm classed as ideal for vineyard development, and with high quality water storage that sets it apart from other local viticulture-suited property, has been offered for sale.

PGG Wrightson Real Estate Nelson/Marlborough Sales Manager Joe Blakiston has listed the 228 hectare property, 14 kilometres south west of Seddon and 38 kilometres south of Blenheim. He says the farm’s new 250,000 cubic metre reservoir makes it an outstanding opportunity for a large viticulture project.

“This property has been comprehensively assessed and developed with a view to its future use as a commercial vineyard. That includes securing a water right and constructing a four hectare reservoir to store water from the Starborough Creek.

“Initial scoping reports identify further potential water storage sites, offering additional benefit for downstream vineyard development.

“Work undertaken on the farm also includes contouring the land to enable vines to be planted,” he said.

According to Joe Blakiston, the consent to fill the reservoir with 300,000 cubic metres of water from the Starborough Creek will provide a highly reliable irrigation scheme.

“Given predictions that the current dry conditions are set to become more prevalent, this is a highly effective insurance policy.

“In addition, because of its source, the water in question is of higher clarity than other major schemes. This is clear creek water from the farm’s own catchment, unlike water from the nearby Awatere River, which can be more cloudy and therefore problematic for irrigation infrastructure. With an annual rainfall of 800 millimetres, across a catchment of 3.5 square kilometres, there is more than enough water to fill the reservoir, giving a high degree of reliability for any consequential irrigation use, well above projected requirements for grape production,” he said.

Reports on the property’s suitability for grapes were favourable.

“A viticultural consultant’s assessment undertaken in 2018 indicates that the soils, climate, water supply and location suit the property to development for good commercial or commercial premium wines, across some 110 hectares of the farm. With Marlborough farm land suitable for viticulture development being used up fast, this is an excellent opportunity for a corporate grower or investor,” said Joe Blakiston.

Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir are identified in the assessment as the most likely grape varieties to thrive on the land.

“Development blocks with good rights to water remain in demand from corporate buyers, and are at a premium among corporate viticulture interests and investors. Prices for larger parcels of Marlborough viticulture land have been firming for some time as larger companies look to secure future production. This is a unique opportunity for a gilt-edged water right and water storage dam second to none in the district, offering an excellent opportunity to plant grapes on a significant scale in a strategic location,” he said.

Further information:
Joe Blakiston, 027 434 4069


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