You are currently viewing the International Edition. You can also switch to the Hong Kong Edition.
Sunday 5 July 2015

Boycott poll ‘inappropriate’ and ‘damaging’

28th January, 2013 by Rupert Millar

Wines of South Africa has said that a recent poll in the Guardian on boycotting South African wine “has the potential to do unimaginable damage”.

South-African-vineyardThe poll was posted on the newspaper’s website last week and asked readers whether or not they would consider boycotting South African wine and fruit in the wake of recent strikes over pay.

Fifty-nine percent of those who polled said they would, 41% no.

However, as the drinks business reported at the time, contrary to initial reports wine workers were not involved in the strike action.

The letter, written by WOSA’s CEO Su Birch, said: “The coverage unfairly targets the South African wine industry and has the potential to do unimaginable damage to an industry that is working hard, through its support of the Wine and Agricultural Industry Ethical Association (WIETA), and also Fairtrade, to ensure the ethical treatment of workers.”

Birch added that any boycott could have severe ramifications for the industry’s 275,000 workers.

She wrote: “We feel the call to boycott South African wines is inappropriate and saddening. The wine industry contributes an estimated R27 billion to the South African economy and some 275,000 people are directly employed by the industry.

“These people will be negatively affected if sales fall – a very likely outcome when wine farms are already battling against tough market conditions and if consumers boycott our wines. We ask that consumers support the industry and farm workers by buying our wines, ensuring the efforts by WIETA, Fairtrade, Fair for Life and all our producers can continue.”

The letter went on to describe the growing importance of WIETA’s Ethical Seal, which launched last year and will soon be appearing on bottles in the UK.

The poll is now closed.

2 Responses to “Boycott poll ‘inappropriate’ and ‘damaging’”

  1. The region is inching its way back into the global marketplace. Why take away all that effort now!?

  2. Zarin Thomson says:

    I am so glad someone is aware that the (wine) farm workers were not involved with the strikes, it was in fact ANC supporters that were paid to stand there. To take it further: cape coloureds work on wine farms – not xhosa or zulu.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

If that's interesting, how about these?

Q&A: John Barbier, the Colorado cook-vintner

“I have never followed a recipe in my life, I’m a man of instinct”, more...

Red wine could help fight depression

A component found in the skins of red grapes could be used to treat depression more...

Accolade's Fish Hoek goes Fairtrade

South Africa's Fish Hoek is to go Fairtrade from the 2015 vintage, becoming more...

PR Manager

Competitive

UK reviewing alcohol intake guidelines

Health officials are to review the government's drinking guidelines, as more...

Santa Rita launching new Irish campaign

Chilean wine producer Santa Rita Estates is spending €500,000 on a new more...

Sud de France launches Wine Hub

An "innovative" tool designed to support wine producers and importers operating more...

International Business Development Assistant

London, United Kingdom

To be determined, based on the profile and experience of the candidate

Oregon producer takes international view

One of Oregon’s youngest wine estates has partnered with Jackson Family Wines more...

Austrian wine importer launches in Hong Kong

A wine importer specialising in Austrian wines has launched in Hong Kong to more...

Fire devastates New Zealand winery

A fire has ripped through a New Zealand winery destroying its offices, kitchen more...

London Sales Manager / Key Account Manager

London, United Kingdom

Competitive - depending on skills and experience

Bilingual 'tool' demystifies wine tasting

The Australian Grape and Wine Authority has developed a new "tool" which more...

China’s Ningxia region launches wine contest

Select winemakers will have the chance to travel to China to learn from its more...

The Tour de l'Oc in pictures

A pictorial report of the highs and lows of the Tour de l'Oc cycling challenge more...

WOSA woos UK indies and on-trade

Wines of South Africa has announced plans for a new UK trade tasting later this more...

Champagne needs to 'create a new occasion'

Champagne needs to "create a new occasion" and better communicate its brand if more...

En primeur: beware the heralded vintage?

From an investment point of view is it best to buy the “vintages of the more...

Hatch Mansfield – Brand Manager

London, United Kingdom

Competitive salary

Final call for Liberty apprentice scheme

Liberty Wines is inviting final applications for its apprentice programme, more...

Asda warns suppliers of Champagne scam

Asda is warning suppliers to be on guard after several companies received more...

Winemaker fined $35k over toxic waste

An Australian winemaker has been fined AUS$35,000 (£17,000) after he was found more...

Mumm releases Santana sparkler

Legendary guitarist Carlos Santana has teamed up with Mumm Napa to release a more...

Oddbins woos Naked staff with love letters

Oddbins has allegedly been sending love letters and bottles of wine to key more...