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New Vinpro initiative to drive SA wine tourism

Published:  24 July, 2019

South African wine industry body Vinpro has launched a new Wine Tourism Toolkit to help wineries open or develop their wine-tourism businesses.

The toolkit, launched at an event in Paarl yesterday, offers assistance with wine tourism from the planning stage through to implementation. It includes resources, check lists, templates and case studies.

It is hoped that the toolkit will help wineries by unlocking additional revenue streams, increasing revenues from wine sales and growing brand awareness.

Marisah Nieuwoudt, wine tourism manager at Vinpro, said: “For most companies, wine tourism revolves around the tasting room and associated facilities and services. Due to its visitor-facing role, this automatically launches wineries into the realm of hospitality and tourism and it’s up to them to create a multi-visit destination worthy of visitors’ time.”

The toolkit has been funded by the Cape Winelands District Municipality (CWDM), as well as by Vinpro. It is free to access and use.

Dr Helena von Schlicht Alderman, CWDM executive mayor, said: “The CWDM recognises the strategic value of wine production as part of the broader regional economy where the multiplying effect contributes further to agri-processing, wine tourism, hospitality, employment opportunities, skills development and manufacturing.

“Co-operation through strategic partnerships is vital to the continued growth of the industry and the association of the CWDM with Vinpro is ideal in striving towards excellence in the promotion of our wine-tourism product.”

Rico Basson, managing director of Vinpro, said: “The toolkit is one of various milestones on our journey, through which we aim to take our world-class wine tourism industry to the next level by increasing the number of visitors to destinations across all regions, growing wine tourism’s contribution to GDP annually, creating new job opportunities and identifying training opportunities for individuals working in this sector.”

Vinpro is planning a series of industry workshops on the content and use of the toolkit. The toolkit will be updated updated bi-annually to ensure it remains relevant as wine tourism and the wine trade in South Africa develop.

The South African wine grape harvest this year returned its lowest crop since 2005 as a result of drought and other challenging weather conditions.