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8 - The Renaissance of South African Wine

Innovation, Sustainability and Empowerment since the 1990s

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  16 March 2024

Paul Nugent
Affiliation:
University of Edinburgh
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Summary

This chapter provides a detailed analysis of efforts on the part of the main players in the wine industry to simultaneously embrace black economic empowerment, economic competitiveness and environmental sustainability. It notes that while this ironically led to the spinning of a new web of certification, with associated costs, the overall consequences were favourable. The cooperative sector underwent the greatest upheaval, while the number of producing wholesalers increased greatly. There was also a marked increase in the number of private cellars, before falling off again after 2008. The reinvention of Cape was also reflected in the introduction of many new cultivars and marked improvements in quality. The most obvious success lay in a quadrupling of exports by volume in the decade after 1997, which absorbed the wine surplus in a context where domestic sales remained sluggish. The chapter ends with a comparison of different types of empowerment deal and an asssessment of how far the industry has been able to deracialise itself at the level of production, distribution and consumption.

Type
Chapter
Information
Race, Taste and the Grape
South African Wine from a Global Perspective
, pp. 250 - 285
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2024

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