Agri Cape Week (ACW,) an annual wine, fruit and vegetable showcase will take place at the historic Worcester Kleinplasie Showgrounds as from 2015. This showcase for a threesome of South Africa’s most effective agricultural industries, wine, fruit and vegetables, will be hosted by agriculture expo specialists, the Mega Group of Companies from Wednesday 28 to Saturday 31 October.
According to Orton King, Group Executive Director of the Mega Group a four year contract with the Agricultural Research Council (ARC) to present this expo at Bien Donné ended in 2014. “We are very excited that we were able to secure the use of the popular and very accessible Kleinplasie tourism destination and look forward to facilitate Agri Cape Week for a community with a golden agricultural show tradition.”
A report released last week shows that South Africa's wine industry not only continues to increase its contribution to the country's GDP but is also growing job opportunities. The industry, that remains one of South Africa's leading agri-exporters, accounted for 1.2% of the national GDP in 2013. In that year it contributed R36.1bn to the economy, (including wine tourism) via agriculture, manufacturing, trade and hospitality, while generating direct and indirect employment for close to 300,000 people.
Speaking on behalf of the industry, Yvette van der Merwe, executive manager of SAWIS said South Africa was the eighth-largest national wine producer by volume worldwide. Vinpro CEO, Rico Basson reiterated that wine tourism remains an underestimated contributor.
King stated that for many years access to international wine and fruit markets has unleashed a burst of new energy and investment. Production is concentrated around Cape Town, with major vineyard and production centers at Worcester, Paarl and Stellenbosch and surroundings. The 2015 ACW theme will however be: Africa open for business.
“We need to take note that Kenya became an important buyer of South African wines. According to Peter Tilley, South Africa occupy first place ‘in terms of volumes of wine imported and sold in Kenya.’ After Angola and Nigeria, Kenya imports more South African wine than any other sub-Saharan African country.”
“Equal to these actions is the important role of African countries e.g.: South Africa, Egypt, Angola and Morocco as sources of world class fruit for global export markets,” says King.
Agri Cape Week at the end of October at Kleinplasie will be a joined venture comprising Mega Group, the Western Cape Department of Agriculture and Rural Development and various commodity organisations and key stakeholders.
King stated that the expo will focus on the value chain, key role players and business opportunities offered internationally, in South Africa and the Western Cape by the renowned South African wine, fruit and vegetable industries.
“Fresh produce, world class processed agri-products, job creation, secondary industries and optimisation of the full value chain will be showcased by exhibitions, workshops, topical discussions and lectures on industry and consumer related issues.”