Wine Industry Strategic Exercise (WISE)

The South African wine industry is in the process of developing a new strategic framework aimed at improving competitiveness and coherence through, inter alia, more focused communication and an industry-wide governance structure.

The wine industry has taken a strong stance to be the leading example of effective and considered transformation in the agricultural sector. A new Transformation Committee has been established to spearhead the effective implementation and impact of the statutory levies allocated to transformation in the wine industry.

A total of 20% of the annual statutory levy, amounting to about R18 million, is reserved for transformation, complementing numerous existing independent wine industry initiatives.

Regional transformation pilot projects, including access to additional water and agri-processing, are currently underway to identify new, sustainable transformation opportunities.

Based on the principles as set out in the National Development Plan (NDP), the wine industry has formulated a land reform policy statement, pertaining to key aspects such as ownership of land, incentives for participation, funding of the land reform process, as well the involvement of the agri value-chain.

Meanwhile, VinPro has appropriated significant funding, which will be leveraged through financial partnerships, to support specific transformation initiatives. More details about this substantial initiative will be announced at the Nedbank VinPro Information Day on 22 January 2015 (see p78).

The wine industry’s new Transformation Committee comprises:

  • Ronald Ramabulana (National Marketing Council)
  • Kurt Moore (SALBA)
  • Vernon Henn (Thandi Wines, and representing black-owned brands)
  • Rico Basson (VinPro)
  • Joyene Isaacs (Western Cape Department of Agriculture)

Terms of references have been established for nine new projects:

  • Transformation plan
  • Brand South Africa local marketing strategy
  • Wine tourism baseline study and strategy development
  • Single South African information portal and search engine
  • Data analysis and market and consumer research
  • Price point analysis of supplychain – packaged and bulk
  • Wine Social Compact 
  • Implementation plan for learning and development in the wine value-chain
  • Technology transfer and innovation strategy for the wine value-chain

Wise initiative reaches implementation phase

This new momentum in transformation coincides with the third phase of the Wine Industry Strategic Exercise (Wise), which entails the development of a monitoring and evaluation framework, as well as terms of reference for the appointment of appropriate implementation agents.

Six key strategic objectives (see below) have been confirmed by the industry, through the development of a baseline report and the identification of stakeholder needs. These objectives represent 19 critical industry themes that were investigated in order to propose relevant projects, through the establishment of terms of references, which provide detailed guidelines of projects to be implemented.

Terms of references (TOR’s) have been established for nine specific projects, leading up to the implementation phase of WISE. Two projects – a wine value-chain analysis and benchmarking and supply-chain study by Stellenbosch University – are already underway. The next steps will entail selection of respective implementation agents for the remaining projects, the allocation of applicable budgets and time frames, as well as ongoing monitoring and evaluation.

The Wine Industry Strategic Exercise should conclude during 2015 and further information about the implementation of the proposed projects will be announced at the Nedbank VinPro Information Day.


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