Emerging SA winemakers woo Chinese

Liziwe Ndalana, Fin24

Cape Town – Black-owned winemakers had a golden opportunity on Monday to showcase their labels to a Chinese importer delegation hosted by the Western Cape trade and investment promotion agency Wesgro.

This follows an outcry by black-owned labels that access to the market is almost impossible.

According to Che Smith, Asia and Middle East senior international trade manager at Wesgro, the purpose of the event was to bring a Chinese delegation to South Africa to ensure that they understand the local wine industry, but more importantly to make sure they purchase more of South Africa's wines.

"The more wines we are able to sell will enable us to create more jobs," Smith told Fin24.

Emerging farmers and black-owned wineries, through their umbrella body Treasure Chest, were able to present their wine labels and negotiate deals that will eventually lead to job creation. Treasure Chest represents 14 wine labels.

Antoinette Vermooten, CEO of Bayede Royal Signature wine selection said her wine label has a rich South African history and that it strives to transform the industry by ensuring that the company has 52% black ownership.

WATCH: Che Smith of Wesgro explains how they help SA wine labels reach the international market.

Nondumiso Pikashe, owner of Ses’fikile Wines told Fin24 that access to the market and funding is still a big obstacle for black-owned wine labels. "Being part of Treasure Chest has, however, afforded media exposure and better access to the market," Pikashe said.

ALSO READ: WATCH: From teetotaler to wine label owner

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