Pradeepkumar Kadkol

A second winery will be set up in Gayran village near Torvi

Proposal sent to the Government to hand over the land to the Horticulture Department

‘Winery will benefit small and medium grape growers’

Bijapur: Since the Krishna valley is known for growing quality grapes in the State, the Government has decided to establish another winery in Torvi area of Bijapur to promote the wine industry.

Karnataka which is one of the largest producers of grapes in the country, already has two well-established wineries, one in Bangalore and another in Bijapur. Establishing another winery at Bijapur would help in promoting sales of wine.

At present, the wine industry is growing at a rate of 30 per cent a year.

The total sale of wine in the State was 4.9 lakh litres in 2004. It grew by 12 lakh litres in 2007 and 16.8 lakh litres in the last fiscal. By providing proper impetus to wine production and marketing, production can be further improved. It would also help grape growers to emerge from financial crisis they have faced due to variation in prices of grapes and losses due to untimely rainfall.

Land identified

Speaking to The Hindu, in-charge Deputy Commissioner S.M. Sonnad said that according to the instructions of the Government, the district administration had identified 143.17 acres of government land in Gayran village near Torvi, eight km from Bijapur city, and a proposal had been sent to the Government to hand over the land to the Horticulture Department.

The officials of the Karnataka Wine Board, who visited the site recently, had said that the land was suitable for establishing a winery. Once the Government sends the written letter of approval, a team of technical experts would visit the district and start work.

“The district administration has made the necessary preparations to provide infrastructure and other facilities required for the purpose,” he added.

Karnataka State Grape Growers’ Association president B.M. Kokare said that the winery would benefit small and medium grape growers as they could get machinery and technical advice from the experts there. In addition, the financial burden on the growers would be reduced, he added.