Warakirri adds NSW, SA wineries to farm fund

The Old Stornaway Vineyard, in Tasmania’s Relbia, part of the Josef Chromy Wine portfolio.

Warakirri Asset Management has added two major assets to its Farmland Fund (WFF), which launched last April.

Grande Junction, in Pomona, New South Wales, near Mildura, and Coldridge, at Loxton, South Australia, were offered by Australian Vintage Limited with an initial 10 year leaseback.

Also including water entitlements, the deal is worth $62.5 million.

The acquisitions come a month since Southern Premium Vineyards, owned by Canada’s Public Sector Pension Investment Board (PSP Investment Board), purchased 35 vineyards all up with 7258 hectares, in NSW and SA, from the Casella family.

In August, Centuria struck a leaseback deal with Accolade Wines for six SA assets of this type, including the Barossa Valley’s Resurrection Vineyard and in the Clare Valley, Hanlin Hill and Stobie.

That portfolio, worth $8.2m, is now held by the Centuria Agricultural Trust No 1.

WFF targets table, wine grapes

WAM was established in Melbourne 29 years ago.

The open-ended WFF is targeted to hold a $500m portfolio.

Vineyards are expected to make up about 30 per cent of the fund, split evenly between assets that produce table and wine grapes (story continues below).

Grande Junction, which spreads 405ha, and Coldridge (c895ha) produce a combined 23,000 tonnes of grapes annually.

AVL will repay debt with proceeds.

WAM grows another fund

WAM seeded WFF with Cobram’s Moira Orchard Estate and Bilmont, in Swan Hill, which cost $34m from WF Montague, in another leaseback deal.

In May, the fund manager – for its Diversified Agriculture Fund – snapped up the Tasmania real estate and business, Josef Chromy Wines, for $55m, after striking a long-term lease with Endeavour.

The group, with PSP Investment Board, care of the Warakirri Cropping entity, also owns assets including the Yoona Springs (formerly known as Gurrady Farms) farm at Yuna, Western Australia, which cost c$30m last June.

Prior to the Grande Junction and Coldridge sales, AVL grapes produced seven per cent of the country’s wine.

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Marc Pallisco

A former property analyst and print journalist, Marc is the publisher of realestatesource.com.au.