Pushing South Africa forward to a more sustainable future
By Richard Siddle
You can get just about anything you want in South Africa. Particularly as it has one of the world’s biggest and most important agricultural and farming industries. But what you can’t do is have a bath.
The last two to three years of drought like conditions across the Cape has taken its toll on the country. Even though dam levels have slowly recovered over recent months to around half their capacity, water shortages are still very much the topic of debate amongst locals and those tasked with being able to use what water there is to help in their particular line of farming or industry. The wine sector is no different.
* The focus for this year every three-year event is quite rightly on the growing quality, consistency and reliability of this still burgeoning and growing wine industry, with buyers having flown in from all over the world to get their share of what has been an above average 2018 harvest.
Down to earth
* So whilst on the surface all might look well and plentiful in the Cape it is these factors, combined with the changes in climate, and water shortages that all South African producers are having to wrestle with, before they even get chance to sit down and talk prices and agree trading negotiations with their international customers.
* The low average price per litre that South African producers can command for their wines is the biggest issue facing the industry, she warned. Pointing to a chart that showed South Africa bottom of the top global wine exporters with average euro/litre ratio of 1.23 compared to 6.07 for France, 4.15 for New Zealand, 3.79 for the US, 2.17 in Australia and 1.89 from Chile...
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