The drought in the Western Cape is affecting the wine industry negatively as farmers told to cut down on their water consumption.
Manager at VinPro and Wine Cellars Christo Conradie says the water quota has been cut between 50 - 80% which is very concerning because they are entering the harvesting season in the next 12 weeks.
We've been aware of this since the beginning of season between September and October. Farmers have been creative to make sure they irrigate, but whats important now is that there is no rainfall and we are sitting with extreme heat on a daily basis.— Christo Conradie, Manager at VinPro and Wine Cellars
If you look at the monetary side, I think we have about R700 million loss and that is extreme loss spread over 10 regions.— Christo Conradie, Manager at VinPro and Wine Cellars
Conradie says it is unfortunate as there is no insurance offered against drought, adding that farmers have to make the best of the situation.
The reality is that they can be creative but there is nothing more they can do ... Now we are sitting here with smaller berries and a lighter harvest with lower juice and that's the reality they have to live with.— Christo Conradie, Manager at VinPro and Wine Cellars
Because of these factors, he says consumers may see increases in wine prices to compensate.
This is what we needed to make sure that our producers will survive, can replant and make sure this is still a viable industry.— Christo Conradie, Manager at VinPro and Wine Cellars
To hear the rest of this interview, listen below: