As the Namibian table grape industry gets ready to ship the first containers of the new season, Capespan and its Namibian partner, the Namibian Grape Company (NGC), have reason to celebrate.
In the Namibian Vineyard Block competition, held this week as the season got underway, NGC triumphed in all six categories.
Over the past five years Capespan has invested significantly in expanding its own production and partnered production footprint. Capespan Namibia manages the production and marketing of the vineyards on behalf of the NGC.
“Clearly these investments in people, new varieties and developments are now starting to deliver on Capespan’s promise to its customers." said Bernie Denton, COO Capespan Farms. "Capespan congratulates its Namibian team for this exceptional achievement.”
The annual Namibian Table Grape Competition in hosted annually by the Namibian Grape Growers Association and the results were announced at Aussenkehr in the south of Namibia, on the northern bank of the Orange River.
The NGC took six out of six places in the block competition for the categories best ‘Production Block’ and best ‘Young Block’. Capespan Namibia manages the production and marketing of the product on behalf of the NGC.
Capespan says the NGC is a large-scale table grape producer, affirming Namibian grapes as a global brand because of the outstanding quality and sought-after pre-Christmas supply position.
“The region has an ideal climate for table grapes. It has an advantage because the Namibian vineyards are pest- and disease-free with, usually, not a drop of rain during the harvest."
Capespan will export quality Namibian grapes to select markets in the UK, EU, Middle East and Far East, while it also supplies the local South African market.
The company says the season is seven to ten days earlier this year and the first grapes were harvested in week 44.
“A normal yield with exceptional berry size and quality is expected this season,” says the company.
The Namibian competition drew attention and attendance from producers, exporters and visitors from all over Namibia and South Africa.
The event was addressed by Charl du Bois, new commercial executive at Capespan and Michael Lyambo, chairman of the Namibian Agriculture Board, who provided an overview of the global grape industry and agricultural sector in Namibia respectively.
In South Africa the new table grape season has also started without incident. “At present it is really only the start with drips and drabs being delivered and it will take some time before we know how the season will develop,” says SATI’s Clayton Swart.