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Teaching Resources

wine factfile




Country South Africa is a country on the southernmost tip of Africa with a population of 60 million. Fairtrade commodities originating there include fruit, wine grapes, herbs and spices.


Background information Europe dominates the wine scene but a growing share comes from the Southern Hemisphere. The largest Southern producer countries Argentina, Australia, South Africa and Chile each account for 4% of global wine production.


Social issues Winemakers’ and wine grape growers’ incomes have been squeezed by falling prices of wine and rising costs of production over the past two decades.


Work at vineyards is seasonal: Much more workers are needed during harvest seasons than at other times of the year. Many vineyards use intermediaries to hire and supervise the seasonal workers – so they avoid legal requirements related to permanent contracts and social benefits.


Environmental issues The wine industry is a considerable contributor to greenhouse gas emissions, due to the use of glass bottles, heavy machinery, cross-continental transportation, and the specific temperature necessary for wine storage. The emissions from wine transport depend more on the mode of transport than on the distance. Wine is transported either by air, land or sea. Sea transport is the least carbon intensive mode of transport.


Water consumption and wastewater generation are high at each step of wine production: On average, the production of a single glass of wine takes 110 litres of water. This is serious, because many producer countries struggle with water shortages.


Growing demand for wine means the number of vineyards is increasing. This contributes to soil erosion and biodiversity loss. Soil is also affected by the use of agrochemicals and heavy machinery.


Why is Fairtrade important?


Buying Fairtrade wine helps ensure that farmers and workers are receiving a fair price – as well as an additional premium to help their community invest in essential services such as education, sanitation and health care.
Where to buy Fairtrade wine Asda, Bosman, Cognato Wines, Co-op, Finca Monteflores Argentina, HUN, Kumala, Liberty Wines, Lidl, M&S, Pico a Pico, Sainsbury’s, Stellenbosh Drive, Tesco, Tilimuqui, Waitrose.


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