Member for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie has delivered on a pre by-election promise, meeting with local craft distillers.
In the lead up to the July election, brewers and distillers across the region got together to call on the candidates to address the regulatory limitations those in the industry are facing as well as opportunities they were keen to consider.
Ms Sharkie says she will now be writing to the Federal Treasurer Josh Frydenberg to consider investigating policy solutions to streamline the regulatory framework for small-scale distillers, including the way excise is calculated and refunded as well as and the timing of payments.
“Australians pay more in tax for a standard drink made by a distiller than they do a glass of wine or a pint of beer and far more tax for the same product than other countries around the world." said Ms Sharkie.
“It’s time to look at how the industry is taxed, particularly for the smaller producer, so they can remain competitive.
She will also reach out the Tourism Minister David Ridgeway to discuss a potential whiskey and gin trail through the Mayo region as well as setting up an information session for distillers with Austrade, the Federal Government's trade, investment and education promotion agency, to discuss export strategies.
“Craft distillers add another reason for tourists to stay longer in our region. They have much to contribute to the small business tourism landscape in Mayo.”
Image: Supplied - Willa Wauchope from Pot and Still, left, Trudy Dickson from Ambleside Distillers, Ian Schmidt from Tin Shed Distillery, David Pearse from Five Nines Distilling, Paul Shand from Spirit of Gondwana, Gareth Andrews from Fleurieu Distillery, the Federal Member for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie, Sacha LaForgia from Adelaide Hills Distillery and Wes Heddles from Prohibition Liquor Co.