Relief for small distilleries

Federal Member for Mayo Rebekha Sharkie has welcomed last week's announcement of tax relief for small distillers, saying it was just the economic boost the burgeoning industry needs.

The relief should help Kangaroo Island Distillery, formerly KI Spirits, where an expansion is progressing, including the new distillery building taking shape and being built by local firm Kauppila Builders.

This year KI Distillery received a $500,000 grant from the state government's Tourism Industry Development Fund, which will go toward the total $3 million overhaul and upgrade of its existing facility, including a new distillery shed, tasting experience zone and visitor infrastructure.

Mighty Craft, previously Founders First, purchased KI Spirits from Jon and Sarah Lark last year with plans to expand.

Ms Sharkie also welcomed the federal government's commitment to increase the current excise refund scheme for craft distillers from $100,000 to $350,000.

"This measure takes the first step towards placing small distillers on an equal tax footing with wine producers," she said.

"It was a key component of the tax relief package that I and my fellow crossbench colleague Andrew Wilkie, the Member for Clark, have been advocating for on behalf of the boutique distilling industry which is being held back by an unfair tax regime.

"I now call on the Government to also cut the spirits excise to the brandy rate and freeze the spirits and brandy CPI indexation for three years to provide the full measure of tax relief for this growing industry."

There are more than 300 locally owned distilleries across Australia, supporting more than 5000 direct jobs.

Mayo MP Rebekha Sharkie

Mayo MP Rebekha Sharkie

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