R.5m to emerging wine farmers


The Western Cape government has handed over a R571 000 cheque to Bouwland Wine Trust in Stellenbosch to further transformation and black economic empowerment in the wine industry.

Bouwland Wine Trust is one of the top emerging wine makers in the province.

The trust received assistance from the province to purchase about 56 hectares of land to be used for planting vineyards.

At today's hand-over ceremony, MEC for Agriculture Cobus Dowry said it was important for government to assist these projects to help make them sustainable.

"We must come back all the time and see what their needs are and try to help them on the way until they reach a stage where they can make profit to such an extent that the profit can again support farming operations," he said.

He thanked commercial farmers in the Stellenbosch area for their support and mentorship programmes offered to the emerging farmers.

Finance Director for Bouwland Wine Trust, Cecil Jaap said the money would assist in purchasing the necessary equipment required for its daily operations.

"We aim to settle all our debts within ten years but if its sooner, that will be a bargain to us," he said.

The farm operates with about 12 permanent staff, half of which are women.

Source: BuaNews