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Your email address will not be published.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 *

Subscribe to our newsletters

Job vacancies

FINE WINE SALES ADMINISTRATOR

Davy's Wine Merchants
London, UK

Business Development Manager - On Trade

FINE+RARE
Central London, GB

Regional Sales Manager

Swallow Associates Ltd
Home Based: North-West England, UK

London Account Manager Role (Full Time)

LITTLE BIRD GIN
Home based with UK travel. , GB

Sales Operations Manager

Bibendum PLB
London, UK

Digital Marketing Executive (online content & community manager)

Corney & Barrow Limited
London E1W (near Tower Bridge), UK

Store Manager – Premium Drinks

Amathus Drinks PLC
London, UK

On-Trade Regional Sales Manager

Anthony Byrne Fine Wines
London and the South East, UK

Wine Sales – Northwest England

Gerrard Seel
North West England

Senior On-Trade Sales Manager – English Sparkling Wine Company

COREcruitment
London based with national travel, UK

National Account Manager – RTM – On Trade

COREcruitment
Home based with frequent UK travel

Sales Account Manager - Wine

COREcruitment
London, Devon, Manchester, Liverpool, Farnham, Cambridge, UK

The Global Sparkling Masters 2017

Deadline : 14th June 2017

The Global Syrah Masters 2017

Deadline : 14th June 2017

The Global Malbec Masters 2017

Deadline : 14th June 2017

The Global Beer Masters 2017

Deadline : 1st August 2017

Click to view more

Global Chardonnay Masters 2016

Now in its fourth year, the competition will identify the best Chardonnay from all around the world in every price range.

The Asian Cabernet Sauvignon Masters 2017

the drinks business Hong Kong announces its first year of The Asian Cabernet Sauvignon Masters.

Rioja Masters 2016

Now in its fifth year, the competition will recognise and reward the finest Riojas on the world stage.

Fortified Masters 2016

Now in its third year, The Fortified Masters will reward the best fortified wines on offer.

Click to view more