Whoops! $1 million worth of wine spilled
More than 5,000 bottles of Australian wine won't be in glasses after a forklift accident Thursday.
July 22nd, 2011
08:00 AM ET

Whoops! $1 million worth of wine spilled

A malfunctioning forklift dropped 462 cases of wine in Australia on Thursday, a spill with a price tag of more than $1 million.

The 5,544 bottles of 2010 Mollydooker Velvet Glove shiraz, with a price tag of $185 a bottle,  fell almost 20 feet to ground of a wharf in Port Adelaide as the forklift was loading it for shipment abroad, according to media reports.

"We just couldn't believe it," winemaker Sparky Marquis said in a report on Adelaide Now. "As you can imagine, this wine is our pride and joy. To see it accidentally destroyed, and not consumed, has left us all a bit numb.

"The container manager said that when his team came and told him what had happened, he was looking around for cameras to see if it was a 'gotcha' hoax. He realised it was serious when nobody was laughing," Adelaide Now quotes Marquis as saying.

Marquis told ABC.net that only one carton among the 462 was undamaged. His staff was searching through the others to see if any other bottles may have escaped.

"All of the bottles are in the cool store and we're just having to go through every single bottle, check it first of all to see if it has any cap seal damage to it, in which case it just gets immediately discarded," ABC.net quotes him as saying.

The lost wine represents a third of his company's output for a year.

Brett McCarthur of Kerry Logistics, the company which operated the forklift, told Adelaide Now his company moves tens of thousands of heavy containers each year.

"We move hundreds of pallets a day filled with sand and even stuff that it wouldn't matter if you dropped it from 50 feet in the air, but the only premium container had to be the one," McCarthur was quoted as saying.

Marquis said he was working with insurers to get compensated for his loss.

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Filed under: Agriculture • Australia • Food
soundoff (216 Responses)
  1. Yummy

    Isn't there a 5 minute rule for wine that hits the floor?

    July 22, 2011 at 10:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      I woulda had a straw with a filter!!!

      July 22, 2011 at 11:25 am | Report abuse |
  2. sharon

    Oh shoot darn

    July 22, 2011 at 10:48 am | Report abuse |
  3. Harleyxx

    Only a fool would spend $128.00 on a bottle of Shiraz. I made 6 Gallons of Shiraz for less than $2.00 a bottle. I guarantee that you can't tell the difference. The insurance company is getting jacked.

    July 22, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Harleyxx

      Correction $185.00 a bottle! Outrageous!

      July 22, 2011 at 10:50 am | Report abuse |
    • tedwilliams

      and i'm sure your wine is worth what it costs to make

      July 22, 2011 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Bean

      Geez. The insurance company is not getting jacked. The entire winery only makes 15,000 bottles a year! That needs to support the vineyard and everyone that works on that farm for a living all year long. I promise you that if you are making shiraz for $2 a bottle you are not making a living on it. I am sure that the ingredients cost $2, but what if you had to factor in the cost of your time?

      July 22, 2011 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Drinker

      Only a fool would spend $128.00 on a bottle of Shiraz. I made 6 Gallons of Shiraz for less than $2.00 a bottle. I guarantee that you can't tell the difference."

      It's the same old story with folks who bottle their own wine ... I'm thinking that a more likely interpretation is that only YOU couldn't tell the difference ... that's why you bottle your own ... but that's not a bad thing – for you – pity for your guests though!


      July 22, 2011 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Uneducated

      That's why your friends are all blind!

      July 22, 2011 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
    • you are the fool

      You are an idiot. Enjoy your disgusting moonshine, you ignorant hick.

      July 22, 2011 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
    • SV

      I think HarleyXX was probably attempting to take a swipe at wine snobs. Sadly, he failed to recognize how much he sounded like one himself. I'm sure he's quite proud of his bathtub swill, so let me put this in a way he might be able to understand, in the words of Austin Powers, when it comes to your own wine "everyone likes their own brand".

      July 22, 2011 at 11:27 am | Report abuse |
    • Anchorite

      I agree with Harleyxx. Self-described wine snobs can't tell the difference between imported Sherry and my stuff. In fact they usually prefer mine slightly more often in a blind test, and I happily give it away for free. But if you folks are happy getting overcharged 6000% for mass produced junk it's not my problem. I only feel bad for the insurance brokers.

      July 22, 2011 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Henry

      I can tell the difference between a $10 wine and a $50 bottle of wine. While I don't think that many wines are worth $185 a bottle I would guess your wine isn't as good as that wine.

      July 22, 2011 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
    • D

      U clearly dont know much about wine!

      July 22, 2011 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Peter

      It is almost impossible to tell the difference between mid range priced bottles of wine but you can definitely tell the difference between a cheap bottle of wine and an expensive bottle of wine. Not because of the price tag but because cheap wine tends to be very poor.

      July 22, 2011 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
    • rufus

      Yeah, right! And a Picasso looks like a kid's drawing. Oh wait. Many of them do!

      July 22, 2011 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
    • twolfhound

      Actually, some highly acclaimed critics have done taste tests and it's been proven that even they can not tell the difference between a $10 bottle and $100 bottle (not that there wasn't a difference, they just couldn't tell which was the more expensive one). It's not just cause the person doesn't know any better, it's because wine is a personal taste, and the higher end isn't always better. So, yeah, if you're spending more than $100 for wine, its either because you don't know any better or because you like to be able to tell your friends that you have expensive wine. You probably also buy your clothing because of the brand name rather than because of how it actually looks.

      July 22, 2011 at 11:48 am | Report abuse |
    • C

      Marquis said he was working with insurers to get compensated for his loss... ofcourse... think about a forklift... now imagine five thousand five hundred forty four bottles of wine... on the front of one fork lift that 'malfunctioned' no human error huh? and i bet theres no video ... its called an insurance scam... think about the value of the wine you could have sold vs the wine you actually will sell, over time... 4 months... and not to mention travel damage... im just sayin, he sure is awfully lucky he has an insureance policy on the wine...especially when 1 fork lift takes out 462 cases at once... i could understand 10, 50, or even 100 but 462... what do you think?

      July 22, 2011 at 11:50 am | Report abuse |
    • REALLY

      I put together my own toyota with $1,000 drives like a bentley.

      July 22, 2011 at 12:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • M

      @C have you ever considered that this was an accident why would they try and scam the insurance with one of the wines that sells instantly they wouldnt just waste a wine that is in high demand

      July 22, 2011 at 8:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • KJD

      I'll take that bet!

      July 24, 2011 at 12:50 am | Report abuse |
  4. duane

    did any call the police? that's alcohol abuse! lol

    July 22, 2011 at 10:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Scottish Mama


      July 22, 2011 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
  5. Tom

    No reason to cry over spilled wine. Price probably inflated anyway.

    July 22, 2011 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Raj

      Wine, Golf and Starbucks coffee are extremely overrated.

      July 22, 2011 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Jkhn

      Stop wine-ing

      July 22, 2011 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
  6. In Rememberance

    What they didn't tell you was they actually spilled the wine on purpose for the dead homies.

    July 22, 2011 at 11:12 am | Report abuse |
  7. smokin11


    July 22, 2011 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • M

      are you an idiot it is an australian wine

      July 22, 2011 at 8:08 pm | Report abuse |
  8. SV

    The creation of fine wine is a mixture of good fortune in the weather, science, chemistry and art. To see your work destroyed like that must be heartbreaking. It was painful to read.

    July 22, 2011 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      SV Now yours is a comment I can agree with!

      July 22, 2011 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
    • james

      the only comment with any sense attached, i know how i felt and it wasn't good.

      July 22, 2011 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • M

      also this wine was picked right about the time when there was no rain whatsoever

      July 22, 2011 at 8:09 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Sue

    Bet somebody lost their job over that one.

    July 22, 2011 at 11:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Kate

      Malfunctions in the machinery cannot be placed on the shoulders of the one driving it.

      July 22, 2011 at 11:40 am | Report abuse |
  10. Spaceman

    Oh dear Rupert & Wendi will be upset, better nip to the corner shop

    July 22, 2011 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
  11. Anchorite

    2010 worth $185 a bottle? So if the wine was priced as it should be, about $3 a bottle, they've only really lost about $16,000 worth of materials, or less.

    July 22, 2011 at 11:29 am | Report abuse |
    • rufus

      I am so glad to hear from a wine pricing expert. Can you please tell me what I should pay for a 1998 Barolo?

      July 22, 2011 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Gezellig

      @rufus How dare you imply that we are not as knowledgeable about wine prices as you are. As for how much you should pay for a 1998 Barolo, I have no idea. How many miles does it have and what's the Kelly Blue Book value?

      July 22, 2011 at 12:26 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Mike

    I thought that i felt a disturbance in the Force! As if a milliion voices cried out in pain, then silence!

    July 22, 2011 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
    • Larry David

      Post of the day

      July 22, 2011 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Gezellig

      The Silence of the Jams.

      July 22, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
  13. William

    Does that make the surviving bottles worth more?

    July 22, 2011 at 11:37 am | Report abuse |
  14. corked

    all kidding aside, who here can actually afford to pay $185 for a single bottle of wine and enjoy it without wondering ,"was it worth it?"

    July 22, 2011 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Scottish Mama

      The OIL industry execs and ceos that do not pay taxes but can afford to be taken by a bottle of wine. La ti da. I can afford the finer things in life, and the average american can work for $185. a week. Sick.

      July 22, 2011 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Mordechai

    The lesson to be taken from this is that when the forklift operator is drunk, the wine will not be.

    July 22, 2011 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
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