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The "Kooperatiewe Wijnbowers Vereniging van Zuid Afrika" was founded in 1918 as the central wine cooperative in South Africa 95% of the winegrowers joined. The reason for the foundation was a major crisis in South African viticulture, which was characterized by surplus production and the bankruptcies of many winemakers. For a long time was the famous Professor Abraham Isak Perold (1880-1941) worked for the KWV as a viticulture expert. Until 1992, participation was only possible for white members. Production restrictions and annual minimum prices for firing wines have been established.

In 1940, the government of KWV transferred the entire control of the wine sector, thus the agendas were extended extensively. This included the determination of permitted yields, tillering, plant rights and vinification, the permission for the creation of new vineyards, the free utilization of surpluses as well as (also for the KWV non-members binding) all trade or export with wine and brandies. The tasks were research, vine propagation, marketing campaigns, consulting, specialized training, as well as the administration of the appellation system "Wine of Origin".

In 1992 there was a reorientation, the quota system was abandoned and the provisions relaxed. In addition, KWV provided most of the key functions. In 1997, a privatization and renaming into "KWV International" took place. In a nutshell, around 25 million bottles of wine are produced today by KWV. The head office is located in the city Paarl (north of Cape Town). It produces a wide range of excellent wines from around a hundred varieties, such as the Bordeaux blend "Triptych", the Cape style cuvee "Roodeberg" (Shiraz, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon), dry white wines as well as port wine-style wines. The most famous wine series is "Cathedral Cellar", which is named after the basement hall built in 1930. In this are the most modern vinification facilities and 14,000 Barrique barrels.

Every year about 10 million bottles of wine are produced, a large part is exported. The most important export countries are USA, Great Britain and Germany. The company is still the largest brandy producer on the Cape. In addition, it owns 60% of the shares in the Rembrandt Group as a joint stock company Stellenbosch Farmer's Winery (SFW). Since 1995, KWV operates the winery Laborie Estate, not far from the headquarters in Paarl. The vineyards cover 35 hectares of vineyards. Well-known brands are "Pineau de Laborie" (Pinotage) and "La Borie Estate" (Cabernet Sauvignon).

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