Elethu black-owned farm pays dividends

Monday, 4 September, 2017
Bonnievale Wines
The successful 100% black-owned grape farming initiative that benefits Bonnievale Wines workers, is approaching a significant milestone.

In May next year the equal shareholding in the 30ha Elethu farm initiative comes to an end and 100% management is transferred to the Bonnievale Workers Empowerment Trust.

The farm is operated in 50/50 collaboration with a commercial farmer. When this agreement comes to an end in May 2018, the Trust will take full responsibility for the farm management, under the continued mentorship of Bonnievale Wines’ management team. John Barnardt, Bonnievale Wines CEO and chairperson of the Trust, says an application has been submitted for funding to plant a further 16ha of grapes next year. This will mainly be cabernet Sauvignon.

The trust recently declared a dividend for its 31 beneficiaries from the Elethu (“It is ours”) farm’s 2016 harvest. All the beneficiaries are Bonnievale Wines cellar or farm workers, including the farm manager. The Trust owns the 32ha farm of which 16ha have been planted.