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South Africa

The breath­ta­king land­scape around Cape Town is home to South Africa’s wine-growing regi­ons. The viney­ards of around 100,000 hec­ta­res are com­pa­ra­ble to the viney­ards of Germany. They are loca­ted in the Cape regi­on in many small val­leys, which are pro­tec­ted by moun­tain ran­ges. The pro­xi­mi­ty to the sea mode­ra­tes the inten­si­ty of the sun and the tem­pe­ra­tures, and the wines retain their fresh aro­mas. In addi­ti­on to its distinct beau­ty, South Africa’s land­scape is extre­me­ly diver­se, resul­ting in a varie­ty of dif­fe­rent ter­ro­irs. While Cape wines were an export hit in the 18th cen­tu­ry and in high demand in Europe, the­se rela­ti­onships lar­ge­ly bro­ke down in the 20th cen­tu­ry. Due to apart­heid, which las­ted until 1992, trade sanc­tions were impo­sed on South African pro­ducts. After the intro­duc­tion of a demo­cra­tic govern­ment, viti­cul­tu­re ope­ned up. Winegrowers took advan­ta­ge of access to fresh, healt­hy gra­pes and plan­ted many new viney­ards, taking inter­na­tio­nal demand into account. Although wine pro­duc­tion in South Africa is not as rest­ric­ted as in France, for exam­p­le, whe­re only cer­tain gra­pe varie­ties are allo­wed, the laws are strict­ly enforced. Origin and regu­la­ti­on of the are­as under cul­ti­va­ti­on have been defi­ned in line with European stan­dards. Thus, the respon­si­ble Wine & Spirt Borad gua­ran­tees the ori­gin of a wine if it is indi­ca­ted on the label.
South Africa is one of the oldest wine regi­ons in the New World, as wine has been grown the­re sin­ce 1600. Most of the country’s wine pro­duc­tion is con­cen­tra­ted in Cape Town, which is also whe­re the very first bot­t­le of South African wine was made!
For more and more tou­rists, it is also the good wine that attracts them to South Africa. And right­ly so, becau­se not only is the wine regi­on one of the most beau­tiful in the world, but also the wines available in our coun­try remar­kab­ly demons­tra­te that the wine qua­li­ty deser­ves an inter­na­tio­nal top ranking.

Most important regi­ons
In the breath­ta­king land­scape around Cape Town (Western Cape)are the wine-growing regi­ons of South Africa- The viney­ards of about 100,000 ha are com­pa­ra­ble to the viney­ards of Germany.
Breede River Valley- Breedkloof, Robertson, Worcester, Swellendam.
Little Karoo — Calitzdorp, Langeberg, Montagu
Coastal Region- Tulbagh, Durbanville, Paarl, Franshoek, Wellington, Swartland (Riebeeck-Malmesbury) Darling, Constantia….
Olifants River — Citrusdal, Lutzville, Vredendal
Western Cape — Overberg, Hemel-en-arde Valley, Elim, Plettenberg Bay

Most important gra­pe varie­ties (WHITE)
Chenin Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Semillon, Viognier, Colombard-Semillon

Main gra­pe varie­ties (RED)
Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Pinotage, Merlot, Cinsault, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Franc

from coun­try reports WEIN+MARKT 3|2024

In South Africa, both the har­ve­st volu­mes and the area under vines fell signi­fi­cant­ly in 2024. The gra­pe har­ve­st was 7% lower than in the pre­vious year, with a total of around 1.1 mil­li­on tons of gra­pes from 88,000 hec­ta­res, which is expec­ted to result in around 857 mil­li­on liters of juice, non-alcoholic con­cen­tra­tes, wine and bran­dy — the smal­lest har­ve­st volu­me in the last 20 years. Despite the cost pres­su­re, the smal­ler har­ve­st could off­set the cur­rent wine sur­plus. The South African wine indus­try is focu­sing on value-oriented growth and sus­taina­bi­li­ty, accor­ding to Rico Basson, CEO of South Africa Wine. Frost, floo­ding and unu­su­al rain­fall have led to regio­nal varia­ti­ons in crop los­ses, espe­ci­al­ly for ear­ly white gra­pe varie­ties such as Chenin Blanc. While Klein Karoo is expec­ting a slight­ly lar­ger har­ve­st and Swartland is fore­cas­ting nor­mal yields, the los­ses in Olifants River and Paarl due to floo­ding and in Stellenbosch due to drought after hea­vy spring rains are par­ti­cu­lar­ly noti­ceable. South Africa, the seventh lar­gest wine pro­du­cer in the world, lost around 2 per­cent of its viney­ard area last year, par­ti­cu­lar­ly in the Northern Cape (519 hec­ta­res). Large gro­wing are­as such as Stellenbosch, Robertson, Olifants River, Swartland and Paarl also recor­ded decli­nes, while Cape South Coast was the only area to report an increase of 10 hectares.