Women in Wine: Economic inequality

Dec 10, 2020

Picking up where we left off with our Women in Wine webinar back in October, Vinimark Podcast host Jono Le Feuvre sits down for a conversation with Rose Kruger, winemaker at Stellekaya in Stellenbosch, about the complex web of challenges women in the local wine industry come up against on a regular basis.

In this episode, Jono and Rose touch on a number of hurdles the majority of South African women have to clear in order to establish themselves as esteemed wine industry professionals. Apart from the gender gap we unpacked in the last episode with Samantha O’Keefe, economic, racial and age discrimination are also unfortunate realities.

Raised by a single mother in the village of Pniel, 29-year-old Rose is no stranger to all of the above and has been called on to stand strong in her convictions despite many challenges.

“One of the big things for me has definitely been discrimination,” says Rose. “We all get discriminated against based on our gender. And in my case, my gender and my age.”

During the 20-minute conversation, Rose shares candidly about her own experience of rising through the wine industry ranks, perfectly illustrating how the 1960s feminist slogan ‘the personal is political’ still rings true. She highlights how important it is for young girls/women to have strong role models (here she specifically mentions her mother) and mentors to look up to.

Despite the challenges she’s faced, Rose is clear-eyed about her goals and positive about the future of South African wine.

“On a professional level, I would just like to become known for my craft,” she says. “And also provide some form of mentorship. Having been a mentee myself, I’ve seen first-hand how enriching it can be.”

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