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Published:  23 July, 2008

By Jack Hibberd

Bruce Jack, the charismatic winemaker at Flagstone winery in False Bay, has warned that around half of the companies [exhibiting at the Wines of South Africa tasting] will not be here next year if their wines keep selling at their current price points'. He said a lot of companies had sacrificed profits for market share but that this was unsustainable. Jack reminded the audience at the WOSA seminar (see above) that South Africa has the lowest average price point of all the New World countries' and that the increasing strength of the rand was fast eroding margins. The industry faces a choice,' he said. We either become price-focused and increase efficiency or we become perception-focused,' which requires better marketing.