SATI Press Release

22 October 2018 – The South African Table Grape Industry (SATI) released the 1st Crop Estimate for the 2018/2019 season with volumes estimated to be between 63,2 and 70,1 million cartons.

Vinpro Information Day

10 October 2018 – The Nedbank Vinpro Information Day, with the theme It starts with you, will be held at the Cape Town International Conference Centre (CTICC), on 17 January 2019 from 09:00 – 15:00.

The Business of Wine & Food Tourism Conference News


 If we don’t know what we don’t know, how can we tap into the true potential of South Africa’s wine and food tourism, argues tourism maven Mari Biggs. The convener of this year’s The Business of Wine & Food Tourism Conference has lined up several high-profile international and local speakers, some of whom will discuss the role of big data as part of the event’s wider theme of innovation. The conference takes place on 17 October at Spier near Stellenbosch.

Convinced that big data is pivotal to helping the industry catch up on its global competitors, she says: “Data is the key to unlocking real-time, unmitigated insights into existing and potential markets. Data can give us information that frees us from confirmation bias and that can catalyse new ways of reaching consumers. Now’s the time. We just can’t afford to keep on letting our competitors steal a march on us.”

UNWTO, the World Tourism Organisation that is also focusing on data, innovation and the digital impact on tourism this year, has found Africa’s tourism competitiveness to be lagging its competitors and operating below its potential. Biggs believes South Africa can play a leading role in reversing the situation.

This year’s headline speaker will be renowned big-data specialist Cathy Huyghe, co-founder and CEO of Enolytics LLC. Huyghe, who is also a columnist for Forbes as well as Inc, and who has written for the Harvard Business Review, consults to a range of wineries, wine marketing bodies and beverage businesses in the Americas and Europe. She stresses that big data is no longer the exclusive domain of well-resourced corporates and that it can drive better business decision-making.  In addition, she highlights that given today’s technology, and the platforms available to consumers to convey what they think about wine, it just doesn’t make sense anymore to have a blind spot around consumer behaviour and sentiment.

“When harnessed strategically, big data can provide a highly cost-effective way to build insights for well-targeted interventions by all types of business, regardless of size. The skill lies in knowing the type of data to seek and how to interpret it.  By integrating different sources of data, it becomes possible to identify previously unrealised opportunities and obstacles.

“Working with data specialists can help in developing a far more comprehensive picture of consumers than ever before.  It allows decision-makers to discover what triggers certain consumer behaviours and choices, their spending thresholds, responses to competitor offerings and more. Data can help wine businesses identify who their competition actually is and not necessarily who they think it is.  It can also uncover correlations that would not otherwise have been apparent.  All these insights can help to create far more powerful, targeted and relevant sales and marketing strategies.

“How deep you drill in your analysis depends on your requirements, but it is possible to identify country-, category-, wine-style- and brand- and even label-specific trends.”

Although not one of the speakers, Alan Winde, Western Cape minister of economic opportunities, whose portfolio includes tourism, also advocates for ramped-up digitisation, big data and machine-learning to help hard-pressed South African producers to market more effectively at a time of persistent rand volatility.  “It is essential to spend smarter to get results. Tourism in the Western Cape is our fastest-growing sector, employing over 200 000 people and generating R17 billion for our economy each year. We believe the potential is there to grow the number of direct jobs to over 200 000.”

Another high-profile speaker to address guests will be Wesgro CEO Tim Harris, who also serves on the board of Silicon Cape, Cape Town’s technology promotion initiative. Focusing on Cape Town’s public-private management of the water crisis in relation to tourism, his talk will be entitled “The power of a single voice; don’t let a crisis go to waste”.

“January 2018 marks the decisive moment when as a province, we embraced the opportunity to change our relationship with water forever,” Harris says.

“The ‘Cape Town Model’ for dealing with climate change shows how tourism can be an important part of the solution. Our strategy very much included tourists as part of the water-wise solution, calling on visitors to truly embrace what it is like to live in our city and province by encouraging them to ‘save like a local’. The overwhelmingly positive response points the way for other metropoles around the world to apply what we have learned,” he concluded.

Other conference speakers include online story-teller Chris Joubert; Spicer de Villiers, who owns A Single Thread, a boutique communications agency active in local wine; and Marisah Nieuwoudt, wine tourism manager for VinPro, the organisation that represents around 3 500 South African wine producers, cellars and industry stakeholders.

Also addressing delegates will be Dr Donovan Kirkwood, an ecologist and biodiversity conservation specialist; chef and West Coast foraging specialist Kobus van der Merwe; and Dr Serge Raemaekers, a marine biologist who has developed a fresh seafood sustainable value chain to service Cape Town restaurants.

Go to to view the conference programme and line-up of speakers.

For more information on the conference, or to register online, visit

Social media:

Twitter and Facebook: @winefoodconf

Instagram: @businessofwineandfood

Hashtag: #wfconf2018

Suggested social media post:

The Business of Wine & Food Tourism Conference (@winefoodconf), at Spier on 17 Oct, will feature several high-profile international and local speakers, some of whom will discuss the role of #bigdata as part of the event’s theme of #innovation. #wfconf2018


Conference partners:

Delta Air Lines



Eztix (technology partner)


DATE                                     8 OCTOBER 2018

ISSUED BY                           AUGUST COLLECTIVE

FOR                                        THE BUSINESS OF WINE & FOOD TOURISM CONFERENCE

QUERIES                               MARGI BIGGS, SPECIALIZED TOURS & EVENTS, 021 433 1314 or 082 770 1440

MARLISE POTGIETER/JANI-MARI SWART, AUGUST COLLECTIVE, 072 562 5307/073 183 0695/021 461 0311 OR

Kind regards


AFMA Symposium 2018

4 October 2018 – Theme: Local is ‘lekker’. CSIR International Convention Centre, Pretoria. 30 October 2018. Read more…

Agri-Expo Livestock News

2 October 2018 – Experts give advice about beef cattle farming at Agri-Expo Livestock.

Livestock farmers and others interested in beef cattle farming can get free advice from experts at the annual Beef Cattle Information Day on Friday 12 October 2018 at Agri-Expo Livestock at Sandringham outside Stellenbosch.

According to Breyton Milford, Operations Manager of Agri-Expo, the information day is one of the agricultural society’s projects to empower and train new entrants to agriculture. The programme is presented in partnership with the Western Cape Department of Agriculture and Standard Bank. “It is also an ideal opportunity for commercial cattle farmers to broaden their knowledge, to get the latest information and to innovate,” Milford said.

This year’s programme includes speakers from all over South Africa, such as:

  • The award-winning Eastern Free State beef cattle breeder Llewellyn Angus, last year’s winner of the Agricultural Research Council’s (ARC’s) award for National Beef Cattle Improvement Herd of the Year, who will talk about basic principles of a successful beef cattle farm;
  • Dr. Vlok Ferreira, an expert in ruminant nutrition and management systems working as national technical manager at RCL Foods, who will advise on correct feeding management in cows and calves;
  • Willie Clack, the National Chair of the Cattle Theft Prevention Forum and second vice-chairman of the Red Meat Producers’ Organization (RPO), who will focus on the role of the producer as guardian in the prevention of livestock theft; and
  • Dr. Faffa Malan, known as Dok Faffa, South Africa’s best-known virtual veterinarian, who will launch his improved “Vra vir Faffa” (“Ask Faffa”) portal as part of the new experts’ section on Malan is the manager of the Ruminant Veterinary Association of South Africa (RuVASA). His participation is made possible by Landbouweekblad.

The Beef Cattle Information Day will take place from 08:00 to 13:00 in the Standard Bank Conference Centre. Attendance is free, but space is limited to 150 guests. For registration and enquiries, contact Breyton Milford at 021 975 4440 or

Agri-Expo Livestock takes place from 11 to 13 October 2018. For more information, visit


Isabeau Botha

Korporatiewe Kommunikasiebestuurder I Corporate Communication Manager
021 975 4440
072 247 5868

Die vyfde Agri-Expo Livestock in 2018

25 September 2018 – Die vyfde Agri-Expo Livestock in 2018 is ’n hoogtepunt op die kalender van Agri-Expo, die oudste landbougenootskap in Suid-Afrika. Agri-Expo Livestock en die Groot Plaasproe is oor die afgelope vyf jaar omvattend uitgebou tot ’n veeldoelige landbouskou, ekspo én plaasfees wat ’n tuiste bied aan meer as 20 verskillende projekte wat landbou in sy geheel bevorder.  Ons sien uit daarna om alle liefhebbers van landbou vanaf Donderdag 11 tot Saterdag 13 Oktober op Sandringham buite Stellenbosch te verwelkom.

SA Working Sheepdog Auction at Agri-Expo Livestock

25 September 2018 – Last year an auction of working sheepdogs was held for the first time in more than 30 years in South Africa. This year, the annual SA Working Sheepdog Auction will be presented again on Friday 12 October 2018 during the three-day Agri-Expo Livestock at Sandringham outside Stellenbosch.

According to the well-known sheepdog trainer WA Hugo of Lamberts Bay, the benefit of the auction is that the dogs have already received training and are ready to become part of interested livestock farmers’ workforce.

“The dogs’ working ability and the value of working sheep dogs are demonstrated to prospective buyers and the public during the auction,” says Hugo. “From Thursday 11 October until the auction on Friday 12 October, there are continuous demonstrations. The handlers will explain what is generally expected of a sheep dog and what each dog’s strengths are. “

According to Hugo, the biggest challenge is to match the right dog to the right owner and specific job situation. For this reason, the South African Sheepdog Association (SASDA) will be manning a stall to share information with interested persons. Prospective buyers are encouraged to talk to the dog sellers in order for them to better understand the buyers’ specific needs.

In 2017, two dogs were sold by Hugo at the auction. “Lex, a fully-trained three-and-a-half-year-old bitch, has already had a lot of experience in sheep work, while Jim, a promising young male dog, has received all the necessary training but not much experience in farm work. Both dogs went to excellent new homes and after a year, both owners are still very pleased with their choice.

“Properly trained sheep dogs can be invaluable to livestock farmers, but buyers must remember that each dog has his own personality with preferences and dislikes,” says Hugo.

Dogs from three well-known trainers will be presented at this year’s auction. Videos showing the working ability of the dogs can be found on the YouTube Channel SA Sheepdog Auction. The auction by BKB auctioneers will take place on Friday 12 October from 14:00 to 15:00 in the Westvaal show arena. The auction also includes five Percherons (four mares and one gelding) of the well-known Elsenburg stud and three miniature horses from the MNB stud. Interested buyers may contact Pippa Phillips at 083 392 1956 or, Marline Burger (Percherons) at 021 808 5375 and MNB (miniature horses) at 082 728 4643 or 082 229 0219.

Agri-Expo Livestock takes place from 11 to 13 October 2018. For more information, visit


 Isabeau Botha

Korporatiewe Kommunikasiebestuurder/Corporate Communication Manager


021 975 4440/072 247 5868

AFASA Press Release

24 September 2018 – AFASA gives President Cyril Ramaphosa’s economic stimulus plan a thumbs up.

The African Farmers Association of South Africa (AFASA) welcomes with appreciation President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Economic Stimulus and Recovery Plan, which rightfully puts agriculture at the centre of the country’s new path of growth, employment, and transformation.

President Ramaphosa yesterday announced the economic stimulus and recovery plan which he said should be implemented immediately to, “ignite economic activity; restore investor confidence; prevent further job losses and create new jobs; as well as to address urgent challenges that affect the conditions faced by vulnerable groups”.

Mr Neo Masithela, AFASA chairperson says the organization is encouraged by the President’s commitment, and in return commits itself in supporting the plan to reignite and grow the economy working hand in hand with government. The President’s announcement, particularly on agriculture and land reform, resonates with AFASA’s Agribusiness Transformation Conference’s resolutions and plans, which is a clear indication that government now understand the importance of the industry.

Lack of infrastructure, finance, and markets, technical support, as well as land, are growth impediments for black farmers. It gives AFASA confidence, that these are focal issues in the government’s economic stimulus and recovery plan in order to ensure that agriculture realizes its full potential in its contribution to the economy.

AFASA welcomes the President’s commitments, which among others include;

  • Coming up with a package of support measures for black commercial farmers to increase their entry into food value chains through access to infrastructures like abattoirs and feedlots.
  • Mobilize for a blended finance from the Land Bank, Industrial Development Corporation and commercial banks.
  • The implementation and expansion of procurement from small business and cooperatives, as well as using trade measures – within WTO rules – to protect poultry and other sensitive sectors, including the vigorous crackdown on illegal imports.
  • Supporting activities with great impact on economic growth, domestic demand and job creation, with a bias to township and rural economies, women, and youth.
  • Finalization of the signing of 30 years leases to enable farmers to mobilize funding for agricultural development.

“We appreciate the long-term lease agreements, at least at this point, especially if it would allow Land Bank to structure a finance facility for the leaseholders. However, we remain adamant that black farmers should be given title deeds to the land, which we believe will position them better in terms accessing finance and other investments,” says Mr Masithela.

Furthermore, the appointment of an advisory panel on land reform led by AFASA President, Dr Vuyo Mahlati, which is meant to guide the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on Land Reform chaired by Deputy President David Mabuza, manifest a renewed attitude towards the sector from government. The recognition and inclusion of the Agriculture Sector Unity Forum (ASUF) is also welcomed.

According to President Ramaphosa, the 10-person panel is to advise government on the implementation of a fair and equitable land reform process that redresses the injustices of the past, increases agricultural output, promotes economic growth and protects food security.

“AFASA welcomes and appreciates the direction government is taking under President Ramaphosa. We hope that indeed the ‘New Dawn’ will bring about positive results and achieve the much-needed growth in the economy, but most importantly, address the challenges facing our masses, that is food security, decent jobs, and an overall dignified livelihood,” concludes Mr Masithela.


Issued by

Peter Mashala

AFASA Communications

084 484 4049/076 559 3439

WOSA Cape Wine 2018 Press Release

21 September 2018 – A Record Year for CapeWine 2018

As the South African wine industry bids farewell to visitors from 66 different countries, we reflect on what was arguably one of the best ever versions of CapeWine.

Over the three days from 12-14 September, a total of 2,414 guests registered their attendance for the triennial CapeWine show that showcased wines from 352 producers under one roof. A combination of both local and international visitors attended a host of seminars, tastings and producer events where they could swirl, sniff and sip at some of South Africa’s top wines and learn more about the regions and varietals that make this country’s wine so unique.

Creating a Sustainable Future

The theme this year was \Hannuwa\, which alludes to the 200,000 year-old Khoi-San word which describes the harmony between man and the land from which is harvested. The Opening Seminar saw a range of speakers highlight various issues that surrounds the industry, but also the myriad of programmes and organisations that work together to create a sustainable future for our people and our vineyards – a relevant topic for an industry which employs roughly 289,000 people in South Africa. This seminar set the scene for the 1,345 local and 1,069 international trade and media who had registered.

About Being Blown Away

Wine buyer and partner for UK retailer, Waitrose, Victoria Mason said, “I was completely blown away by #CapeWine2018 – the quality and diversity of wines on show, the passion of the people behind the wines, the level of excitement all week from all the guests and exhibitors, the “extra-curricular” programme of events and tastings, and the optimism and determination of the industry as a whole in the face of some significant external challenges.”

True Identity

With many groupings creating elaborate stands that highlighted their regions and styles, from a 3D creation highlighting the Simonsberg to a rather funky throwback to the fashion of the 80’s, producers went all-out to stand out from the rest in order to garner the attention and ensure that their stands were popular stops. Those who opted for more traditional stands oozed class and sophistication which truly echo’d the current state of the South African wine industry.

WoSA CEO, Siobhan Thompson, comments, “South African wine has come along in leaps and bounds over the past few years and with that the confidence of our winemakers to stand tall next to their international counterparts. This confidence further boosts a drive to produce wines that are elegant, show great complexity and finesse as well as stylistic qualities that reflect a true South African identity.”

As the doors closed on a truly successful event and the industry reflects on what was a busy, yet exciting week for all, we are excited to reap the rewards in the international trade as they return with a renewed excitement about the category and the media continue to sing the praises of an industry which has finally come into its own and making its mark with pride. Until 2021.


For copies of the Opening Seminar presentations:

Images from CapeWine 2018 can be found here:

For and on behalf of Wines of South Africa:
Maryna Calow – Communications Manager
Telephone: +27 (0)21-883 3860