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'Unprecedented' demand from producers to promote South Africa at Cape Wine 2015

Published:  18 March, 2015

Cape Wine, the trade show for South African Wine, has seen unprecedented demand from producers six months before the show opens its doors.

The trade show, which is held in Cape Town in September has already sold all of its 'early bird' rates, which the organisers said the demand came off the back of growing foreign interest in South African wine.

Wines of South Africa CEO, Siobhan Thompson said there had been a spate of foreign investment in the Cape Winelands from the US, India and China, as well as mounting acclaim from influential international critics and tastemakers and producers were keen to welcome international visitors in order to develop both new and established export markets. "Cape Wine is always extremely well supported by local wine exporters but to have such extensive commitment already, as well as funding from two key industry players, is unprecedented," she said. "It bodes very well for this year's event."

Thompson attributes the keen interest to the growing focus on South Africa as the source of exciting and original wines.

"The reputation we are currently enjoying is the result of assiduous work over more than a decade across several fronts. We have accelerated plant improvement programmes, we are engaged in world-class vineyard and winemaking research and we are collaborating across a broader international front than ever before. Cumulatively, these steps have helped to produce a new generation of dynamic, focused and often visionary people in the industry and curiosity from buyers and observers is rising," she said.

Speakers lined up for the three-day event include Analjit Singh, founder of Max India Limited, who owns vineyards in Franschhoek, a stake in Mullineux & Leeu Family Wines and a luxury boutique hotel in the Winelands. He will be discussing the potential for international investors participating in the local wine industry. "I am exhilarated to be part of an unfolding wine journey in the New World, where much value can still be added. It is far more rewarding than buying into an established winery in one of the Old World wine-producing countries," Singh said.

Other speaker include WOSA chairman and venture capitalist, Michael Jordaan, a former banker and now venture capitalist; WOSA CEO Siobhan Thompson, and Western Cape Minister of Economic Opportunities, Alan Winde.

The show, which will take place on 15- 17 September 2015, is being sponsored by DHL Express taking and Africa's foremost packaging company, Nampak.