South Africa - Wine Laws and Regulations - Wine of Origin (WO) and Certification

3 important questions on South Africa - Wine Laws and Regulations - Wine of Origin (WO) and Certification

What is described in the Wines of Origin Scheme of South Africa?

Production areas are defined since 1973:
  1. Geographical Unit: a political or geographical unit, very large areas eg Western Cape
  2. Region: a political or geographical unit, large area with major/dominant geological features.
  1. District: share environmental features influencing style of the wine. Wider categories; mountain range, major centre.
  2. Ward: defined area within a district. Based on common soils, climate and ecological factors.

What does the Wine of Origin scheme of South Africa ensure and what are the criteria (area-varietal-vintage) in %?

  • The Wine of Origin scheme ensures that the claims on the packaging of the wines are true
  • It carries a certification seal on every bottle
  • It ensures that the wine is of good quality (as evaluated by the Wine and Spirit Board)
  • The criteria are:
    • Named area: 100% of the grapes from this area.
    • Named varietal: 85% of the varietal
    • Named vintage: 85% grapes are from that vintage

In 2010 SA introduced a seal on the bottle. What does it stand for and by whom was this initiated?

The Wines and Spirits Board (WSB), together with IPW and WOSA, released the world’s first industry-wide Integrity and Sustainability seal in 2010 that guarantees a certified wine’s environmental credentials such as chemical usage, water management and introduction of natural predators. This seal also links with the Wine of Origin scheme to increase traceability.

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