For the first time ever, vineyard workers can hone their skills online, thanks to the launch of an e-learning platform for the South African wine industry.

Winetech People Development, the industry body committed to rolling out the wine industry’s people development strategy, has developed the online platform with the aim of offering top quality training to people from across the wine industry value-chain in a simple and accessible format.

“It was the first logical step to start at farm level, and thanks to Vinpro’s vineyard worker training package, which already included excellent learning material, videos and assessments, we were able to easily integrate it on the platform,” says Kachné Ross, manager of Winetech People Development. The platform will be expanded over the next few years to also focus on winemaking, marketing and sales, as well as logistics and distribution.

Vinpro’s annual vineyard worker training is well known in the wine industry, with more than 5 000 people having honed their practical skills over the past seven years. The physical training is based on a DVD training package, of which the 10 modules are now made available online. These include pruning, vineyard establishment, vine development, canopy management, soil management, identification of diseases and pests, irrigation, fertilisation, wine grape harvesting and soil science.

“People are the foundation of our industry, which is why it is important that we give them the opportunity to continuously expand their knowledge and skills,” says Conrad Schutte, Vinpro’s Consultation Service Manager. “Understanding why and how they perform actions in a certain way gives them a sense of pride and responsibility in their work, which boosts productivity. This new convenient online platform gives learners the opportunity to work through the learning material at their own pace and at times that suit them.”

How it works

The e-learning platform is made available to wine companies as a one-year license, and the cost varies depending on the number of employees registered per institution.

If a farm or cellar is interested in signing up their team on the e-learning platform, the team leader or farm manager can send an email to Following this, a training representative will contact them to explain the registration process and set a date for a physical “train the trainer” session, during which a Vinpro expert will provide them with all the necessary information on how the system works, and how the team leaders and teams can utilise the training together in the most efficient way.

Team leaders can then upload their team members to the system, after which each of them will gain access to the e-learning platform through their smart phone or computer and the vineyard teams can embark on their exciting new training journey. Team leaders therefore act as trainers who facilitate their own vineyard workers’ learning under the guidance of the Vinpro training team. Through the successful completion of the first group of workers’ training, the team leaders will be registered with the SA wine industry’s professional body, SAWIPB, as vineyard worker foremen, with special status and recognition.

In addition to the learning material and videos that teams can go through on their own or together, individuals can also complete short tests on each subsection within a module so that they and their team leader can keep track of their progress. Each person who successfully completes a module with an assessment above 80% receives an e-certificate that they can download and print, or keep on their profile should they need it in the future.

For more information visit or contact Kachné Ross on tel 021 276 0450 or email

Wanda Augustyn
Vinpro Communications Manager
Tel: 021 276 0458




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