The Perdeberg wine estate has a long tradition of excellence in wine making and most of our 46 member farms are third generation producers, but this doesn't mean we're mired in tradition! We are constantly on a quest to find better and more innovative ways of doing things, without ever compromising our deep respect for the land or losing our personal touch. Even though our vines span 3000 hectares, each and every vineyard is still managed individually with deft precision and tender loving care.
We love technology. It allows us to turn our attention away from the everyday running of the winery and focus on the important things instead, like wine making, tasting and blending, so you can get more enjoyment out of our wines.
This means we're often ahead of the latest innovations. For instance, Perdeberg Winery is one of few wineries to employ aerial infrared photography. This state-of-the-art technology allows us to eliminate any agricultural concerns before they become a problem. In doing so, we ensure that all our vineyards deliver a very high standard of fine wines. Basically, we aim to be one step ahead of Mother Nature!
There's more to it than technology
We also take an innovative approach when it comes to our agricultural philosophy, which is to farm responsibly and produce our wines in harmony with nature. As far back as 1972, we helped to establish the first tortoise reserve in Africa on one of our member farms, Eenzaamheid. Named the J.N. Briers-Louw Reserve, it was proclaimed a Provincial Nature Reserve when a population of near-extinct Geometric tortoises was found on the site.
In addition to protecting South Africa's most threatened tortoise species, we are proud to announce that Perdeberg Winery has been awarded membership of the Biodiversity and Wine Initiative. Most of the Cape lowlands have been given over to agriculture and we believe that farmers have a vital role to play in turning this around. Many of our member farms still contain significant areas of rare and endangered indigenous vegetation and our farmers are committed to protecting these valuable remnant patches for future generations to come.
Mike Orpen, who owns the farm Blijdschap, is dedicated to clearing alien vegetation so that indigenous species can flourish on his land; and he has felled a significant number of mature blue gum trees to date. He is also rehabilitating a 40 hectare site that used to be an orchard on the western foothills of the Paardeberg, where there is a rich composition of indigenous Boland Granite Fynbos and critically endangered Swartland Granite Bulb Veld.
The owners and trustees of the farm Hoogstede, situated on the western side of Paarl Mountain, have proclaimed a 110 hectare area of unspoilt Boland Granite Fynbos and Swartland Renosterveld a development- and agriculture-free zone.
Another farm with exceptionally high conservation value is Vlakfontein near Malmesbury, which is home to a series of extremely rare and endangered species in the Atlantis Sand Fynbos and Swartland Silcrete Fynbos families. 60 hectares of Atlantis Sand Fynbos is being conserved as a game enclosure and another 115 hectare patch of virgin Atlantis Sand Fynbos is being protected on the farm. This site was botanically assessed in 1998 and not only were 14 Red Data List species identified, it was also proclaimed to be an area of significant botanical interest, due to the rare species combination that occurs there.
Other farms involved in the Biodiversity and Wine Initiative are De Kopje, where we are protecting 700 hectares of indigenous vegetation on the Paardeberg itself; and the farms Papkuilsfontein and Moerasfontein near Malmesbury, which contain a critically endangered stretch of Boland Granite Fynbos between them.
With such significant conservation highlights, Perdeberg Winery is setting a great example of what can be done to conserve the valuable Cape Flora.