Drink For Thought

Van Ryn's Distillery, One of the South African Gold Outstanding Award Winner at the IWSC 2014 Competition in London
Van Ryn’s Distillery, One of the South African Producers of a  Gold Outstanding Award Winner at the IWSC 2014 Competition Held in London

I’ve had this post bubbling inside for a while; pun intended. You see, two years ago I started working in the liquor industry – previously uncharted territory for me. I quickly realised how little I knew about it. You think wine is complex? Try the industry. I spent my first week in primary and secondary production facilities, at bottling plants, on farms, in warehouses – I loved it! I’ve always been fascinated with production lines and heavy machinery; perhaps because I spent so much of my childhood in a truck manufacturing plant in Benoni’s Apex. 

As consumers it’s easy to forget/ignore a product’s roots and often humble beginnings. I heard a story recently about some kids that didn’t know milk came from cows. Why? Because it came from Tesco (a UK grocery chain). My point is that we ought to. My sentiment pertains to all sectors I suppose, but I’m going to reference the local alcohol industry here. 

As South Africans we cannot rest on our laurels and wait for the government to create employment and affect change in this country. Why? Because we can vote with our wallets at the very least. Have you ever stopped to think that supporting local alcohol producers and manufacturers means supporting job creation in the following industries?

  • Farming and agriculture
  • Manufacturing and processing at breweries, distilleries and wineries
  • Distribution, wholesale and retail 
  • Wooden barrel and tank manufacturers
  • Stainless steel tank manufacturers
  • Import and export industry
  • Bottling industry including manufacturers of glass and bottle caps and labels
  • Manufacture and supply of boilers and burners
  • Chemicals, gases and fermentation product manufacturers and suppliers
  • Advertising and marketing industry
  • Event management industry
  • Food and product safety and quality monitoring industry
  • Health and safety industry
  • Generator industry
  • IT (hardware and software) industry
  • Industrial cleaning industry
  • Promotional branding industry
  • Public relations industry
  • Recycling of glass industry
  • Tourism industry
  • Vineyard equipment industry
  • Viticulture industry
  • Water and effluent treatment industry
  • Wine filtration equipment manufacturers
  • Liquor licensing consultancies

That’s a lot of jobs. 

We are the citizens of a nation producing award-winning wines and spirits on a global scale. The following products walked away with GO (Gold Outstanding) and gold awards at the recent 2014 IWSC competition (International Wine and Spirit Competition) held in London:

  • Van Ryn’s Fine Cask Reserve 15YO
  • Oude Meester Reserve 12 YO
  • Van Ryn’s Distiller’s Reserve 12 YO
  • Richelieu 10 YO Vintage Brandy
  • Van Ryn’s Collectors Reserve 20 YO
  • Oude Meester Souverein 18 YO
  • KWV Grape Brandy 12 YO
  • KWV Grape Brandy 20 YO
  • KWV Grape Brandy 15 YO
  • Mainstay Island Fusion
  • Amarula
  • Klipdrift Gold
  • Bain’s Cape Mountain Whisky 5 YO
  • Three Ships Single Malt 10 YO

The list of South African wine and spirit brands walking away with awards in the Silver Oustanding, Silver and Bronze categories is too long to mention; evidence of the high quality of product being manufactured locally. With this in mind, the next time you go to a bar or restaurant put brand/badging status aside for a minute and think about the country of origin and industry/industries you’re supporting by the choice you’re about to make. We have a hell of a lot to be proud of as South Africans. Now let’s start showing our support with our voices and wallets.

brandslut xoxo

1 Comment

    1. Couldn’t agree more – about our wine and that we should be supporting local as much as we can. Great post!

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