To farm biodynamically, first you have to think biodynamically.

To farm biodynamically, first you have to think biodynamically. Key to biodynamics is considering the farm in its entirety as a living system. Biodynamic farms are supposed to be closed, self-sustaining systems. Biodynamics also sees the farm in a holistic view, the soil is seen not simply as a substrate for plant growth, but as an organism in its own right. The idea of using synthetic fertilizers or pesticides is thus an anathema to biodynamic practitioners.

Philip Woollaston entered the wine industry in 1993, developing a small vineyard with his wife Chan. Originally intended as a retirement hobby after a 22 year 'second career' in politics, his interest grew into passion and a vision to produce and export top quality wines. Through the partnership with Glenn and Renee Schaeffer, his dream has been fulfilled. Now semi-retired, Philip as a director, retains a keen interest in day to day operations.

Renee Schaeffer has been part of the Woollaston team since the winery inception in 2000. She is involved from the ground up with bud-rubbing, shoot thinning and wirelifting in the vineyard, along with working the cellar door and art gallery. As a shareholder and director, Renee is involved with the company affairs and business path and she enjoys the direct contact within the wine industry.

Scott Ingram - General Manager, originally from Nelson, has returned to his home town after seven years living in the UK. He has worked in a variety of industries including alcoholic beverages, construction and manufacturing.

Julian Coakley learned the craft of vineyard management at Neudorf Vineyards in Upper Moutere before working for Corbans Wines as regional vineyard manager for the Gisborne region. He joined Woollaston Estates as Vineyard Manager in 2001. Julian's team include Aaron Findlay and Kelly Lefrantz, Vineyard Operators for Burke's Bank and Kelling Road vineyards.

Shane Munn joined us as Winemaker in October 2011 after spending several years at Millton Vineyards, one of New Zealand's leading organic/biodynamic wineries. The other half of Shane's team is Adrian Mann, Cellar Master.

Behind the scenes, keeping Woollaston Estates running smoothly is Vikki Lee in Accounts.

Chrissie Sanders manages the Cellar Door and local sales.

Jj Luck is our Wedding Co-ordinator with the ultimate attention to detail.


Renee  Schaeffer

Scott Ingram


Shane Munn