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Central Orange River

Northernmost winegrowing area (also Orange River, Oranjerivier or Lower Orange) in South Africa, It is not far from the border with the Republic of Botswana with the Kalahari Desert and is about 800 kilometers from the Cape. It is a ward that is not assigned to any district or region. Main town is the city of Upington. Central Orange River is completely separated from the other South African wine-growing areas and named after the almost 2,000-kilometer-long river (Oranje River). East of Orange River is also on the riverbanks of the District Douglas, After the prohibition of slavery in 1834, tens of thousands of Dutch left the Cape region in the so-called "Great Trek" and founded the independent republics Natal, Transvaal and Orange far to the north. Many settlers settled on the banks of the widely branched Oranje River. In the 19th century, large gold and diamond fields were discovered here.

The continental climate is characterized by summers with sparse rainfall and cold and dry winters. The water of the river becomes for the indispensable, artificial irrigation used by flooding the vineyards, which had once been established by the first settlers. The vineyards cover 5,075 hectares of wine grape varieties (2009). They are planted to 91% with the white varieties Colombard, Chenin Blanc, Muscat d 'Alexandrie and Chardonnay, and 9% with the red varieties Ruby Cabernet, Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinotage, Shiraz and Merlot. In addition, there are 8,309 hectares of vineyards for the grape variety Sultana (in total there are 9,082 in South Africa), from the table grapes and raisins be produced. The vineyards are in a narrow band 400 kilometers along the river consistently on fertile alluvial soil, the highest yields yield up to 140 hl / ha. Almost all grape growers deliver their fruits to large cooperatives. Well-known producers are Hartswater Wine Cellar and the largest South African winery Orange River Wine Cellars, which bottles wines from five major wine cooperatives.

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