The news that lovely Lorraine Immelman’s woman winemaker of the year competition has been cancelled has knocked the spittoon 1.2mm off its rapidly rotating axis. The reason supplied is that sponsorship from Landbouweekblad magazine “expired at the end of 2010, and [Lorraine] is negotiating with new sponsors when the competition re-launches in 2012.” Which begs the question: why didn’t sponsorship renewal negotiations start earlier? Capitec Bank are yapping at the heals of the Big Four who all fund substantial sponsorships in wine. So how about it, Riaan Stassen?
Or is the report an April Fool joke? Certainly the competition has an air of ill-suppressed hilarity about it after last year’s confusion over who made the wine wot won it, while the first running, back in 2004, seemed to reward green peppers. With many winemakers of the female persuasion (like Cathy Marshall, above) boycotting it as demeaning to owners of XX chromosomes, let’s hope that any potential sponsors in Stellenbosch think long and hard before they perpetuate a divisive and sexist competition.
On the subject of April Fool jokes, surely reports that Meridian (owned by the La Motte Ruperts) are to distribute wines from Vergelegen (owned by Anglo American) fall into this category?