three glass of white red and rose wine with dim light in wooden restaurant table with a grape background

Vinpro, yesterday launched its Wine Tourism Toolkit at an event for wine industry stakeholders in Paarl. The toolkit was developed on behalf of the industry to assist businesses to establish or expand their wine tourism footprint.

“For most companies, wine tourism revolves around the tasting room and associated facilities and services. Due to its visitor-facing role, this automatically launches wineries into the realm of hospitality and tourism and it’s up to them to create a multi-visit destination worthy of visitors’ time,” says Marisah Nieuwoudt, wine tourism manager at the wine industry body Vinpro.

The online toolkit provides a blueprint to assist wineries to plan and implement their wine tourism initiatives, as well as seven sections which focus on different aspects of wine tourism, each including resources, checklists, templates and case studies. Users can work through the toolkit sequentially or select different modules and topics to suit their needs.

The benefit to wineries

Using the toolkit would include unlocking additional revenue streams by developing a suite of wine tourism experiences, improved service delivery, increased revenue from wine sales and growing brand awareness by offering quality experiences to visitors.

The toolkit is made available to the industry at no cost thanks to funding from the Cape Winelands District Municipality (CWDM), as well as a further contribution from Vinpro to expand its reach to wine-related businesses across the country.

“The CWDM recognises the strategic value of wine production as part of the broader regional economy where the multiplying effect contributes further to agri-processing, wine tourism, hospitality, employment opportunities, skills development and manufacturing, to mention a few,” says Dr Helena von Schlicht Alderman, CWDM executive mayor.

“Cooperation through strategic partnerships is vital to the continued growth of the industry and the association of the CWDM with Vinpro is ideal in striving towards excellence in the promotion of our wine tourism product.”

Wine tourism was identified as one of the driving forces that would help the industry reach certain growth targets set by the Wine Industry Strategic Exercise (WISE) by 2025. “The toolkit is one of various milestones on our journey, through which we aim to take our world-class wine tourism industry to the next level by increasing the number of visitors to destinations across all regions, growing wine tourism’s contribution to GDP annually, creating new job opportunities and identifying training opportunities for individuals working in this sector,” says Rico Basson, Vinpro MD.

“I would like to thank all wineries, consultants, government institutions and industry partners who shared their expertise and experience with us towards developing the toolkit, and encourage any business who plans on establishing or expanding their wine tourism footprint to use it,” says Nieuwoudt.

A series of workshops are currently being planned, which will cover the content of the toolkit, and Vinpro will consult with the industry on specific areas that they would like future workshops to focus on.

The Wine Tourism Toolkit is available at here.