Friday, November 27, 2015

Cape winemakers look to Cuba market

Cape winemakers look to Cuba market
November 27 2015 at 08:28am
By Nicola Jenvey

Durban - The exhibition hall during this year's highly successful Cape
Wine 2015 demonstrated the extent to which South Africa's wines were
being welcomed globally.

Now two Stellenbosch winemakers say they will take advantage of the
positive developments in Cuba to open an export market in the Caribbean
country for their wines.

Kanu Wines MD Ben Truter and Koopmanskloof Vineyards MD Rydal Jeftha are
part of a group of South African businesspeople who participated in the
Havana International Trade Fair earlier this month.

Truter had participated in the trade fair two years ago, but had found
the market impenetrable at the time. He said now the changing
environment in Cuba, driven by the normalised relationship with the US,
offered a different scenario.

Jeftha said Cuba was attracting global attention, but specifically from
the US, and he wanted to be a step ahead to take advantage of the good
relationships between South Africa and Cuba. That meant penetrating the
wine market and getting South African wines on restaurant wine lists and
into hotels.

In finding a Cuban agent he believed he could establish his brand in
Cuba and increase the presence of his wines in the country. Already the
restaurants and hotels were teeming with tourists.

Truter was inspired by the media reports of developments in Cuba and
observed a potentially sound market provided by the tourists, especially
European, streaming into Cuba.

"This is the opportune time to establish a presence here … there is no
time to procrastinate as things will be more difficult in the future as
more companies target Cuba as an export market for their products," he said.

There is little doubt South African wines can compete against the best
in the world. The opportunity to demonstrate that on another
international stage can only hold our wines in good stead.

Closer to home, South Africa has a new wine route – the 21st time a
group of wineries has formed a collective to draw tourists and promote a
specific region. Misty Mountains Estate is the first winery visitors
encounter on the Stanford Wine Route when travelling from Hermanus on
the R43.

Next is Springfontein on the opposite side of the Klein River where the
cool, windy Walker Bay climate and limestone soils have brought out the
best in chenin blanc and pinotage. The Sir Robert Stanford Estate is
just off the R43 and about 1km before the town of Stanford.

Established in 1855 and once owned by entrepreneur Sir Robert Stanford,
it is one of Walker Bay's oldest wine estates with vineyards overlooking
the Klein River Valley.

The balance of the route includes Stanford Hills winery, Walker Bay
Vineyards, Vaalvlei, Raka and Boschrivier Wines – certainly a trip well
worth considering for anyone looking for another experience in the

Source: Cape winemakers look to Cuba market - IOL Lifestyle -

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