Craggy Range Winery to stay in family for 1000 years

By Patrick O'Sullivan

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Craggy Range founder and owner Terry Peabody is determined to create a lasting wine-industry dynasty. Photo/Glenn Taylor
Craggy Range founder and owner Terry Peabody is determined to create a lasting wine-industry dynasty. Photo/Glenn Taylor

The Peabody family has formed a 1000-year trust for its Craggy Range wine business, founder Terry Peabody told a business lunch at its Havelock North winery.

"This business truly lends itself to a family legacy," he said.

"That was an overpowering factor for the decision to wind up in this wonderful country," the American-born businessman said.

"Great dynasties of the world have been involved in the wine industry for generations and so many of them are so well-known there is no point in mentioning them.

"To do that we have been able to set up 1000-year legacy for our family, that none of the Craggy Range assets can be sold or disposed of any way outside of the family."

Building a family legacy was one of the driving factors for choosing the wine industry and New Zealand.

"Our whole intention is to remain in New Zealand because we truly believe the future is here."

His wife, two children and grandson were "solidly entrenched in the business".

He told Hawke's Bay Today the family were very excited about the trust and working together strengthened them as a unit.

He said the wine business was incongruous with his other businesses, such as waste management and selling trucks and buses, but that was how he was introduced to both it and Hawke's Bay.

"Ironically a distributor here was a group called Truck Stops and it was owned by the same company that at that time owned Montana wines. They were instrumental in introducing me to the wine industry in New Zealand.

"I saw an opportunity here that we hadn't seen in France, or America, or Australia. A new opportunity rather than an older one that wasn't nearly as economic to enter."

He said it was not a business for the fainthearted or one you could enter as a hobby "because it will be the most expensive hobby you could possibly consider."

He said the family didn't spend as much time as they would like to in Hawke's Bay.

"We are always here for harvest for three or four weeks and we are always here for blending for three to four weeks and then as much time as possible that we can squeeze in."

Craggy Range has vineyards in Marlborough, Central Otago, Martinborough and two in Hawke's Bay.

It entered into a partnership with Benjamin de Rothschild and his family in 2012 to produce Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc and pinot noir from a 26ha vineyard. The Rothschild's wine is called Rimapere.

- HAWKES BAY TODAY

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