Veritas honours legendary industry leaders
It has become customary for Veritas to annually highlight the contribution of a handful of industry giants. The Veritas legends are invariably men and women who have retired and whose dedication and enthusiasm has led to the promotion and growth of the local wine and brandy industries.
"Veritas choose to honour living legends with this special award to
thank them for their unfailing commitment to the industry," says Charles
Hopkins, chairman of the SANWSA. "The growth of the industry relies on
more than wine makers and viticulturists and we like to applaud the
greats who have made their mark for the duration of their careers."
year five people were nominated to receive the 2013 scroll of honour
during the 23rd Veritas Awards ceremony: Jan Booysen, Henk Bruwer, Riaan
Kruger, Wouter Pienaar and Matthee van Schalkwyk.
Booysen's career started as researcher, he soon found himself employed
as the manager of extension services at KWV, serving on the senior
management of KWV for three years from 1993 to 1996. He was also the
President of the SA Society of Oenology and Viticulture for two years.
In 1996 he joined VinPro as the manager of Consultation Services and was
soon after appointed as the Executive Director of Winetech until 2012.
He continues to represent the SA wine industry in the International
Office of Vine and Wine and has been appointed as Qualified Personality
(Technical Advisor to the OIV President) at the OIV until 2015.
Bruwer, owner of the De Hoop farm in Riebeek Kasteel since 1971, has
served on the board of directors of various wine industry institutions
since the early 80’s. He has been a director of the Riebeek Wine Cellar
for 30 years – 17 of which he acted as chairperson. He was the
executive chairperson of the Wine Cellars of South Africa organisation
for the past 9 years and served on various other wine industry
committees, boards and institutions.
Riaan Kruger started
his career in 1976 as legal advisor for the KWV. He shared his knowledge
with the SA Liquor Brand owners Association (SALBA) for 34 years as
their CEO. Riaan was co-founder of the Industry Association for
Responsible Alcohol Use (ARA) and served on their managing committee for
a quarter of a century. He was also instrumental in the creation of
WOSA, SAWIS and Winetech and still serve as the chairperson of SAWIS.
He was the first person who negotiated with the unions regarding wages
when unions were legalised in this industry.
Wouter Pienaar was
employed as microbiologist, senior wine buyer and cellar master at
Stellenbosch Farmers Winery for 38 years. During his career he served on
the executive committee of the SA Society of Oenology & Viticulture
for 10 years – two of which as President. Wouter has been acting as
judge at various SA wine shows since 1965 and is still an active wine
judge. Since his retirement, wineries in Spain, Turkey, Hungary and
Portugal and various local cellars have benefitted from his expertise as
Matthee van Schalkwyk's contribution towards
the improvement of the wine quality of Oranje River Wine Cellars has
made him a legend in his own right. As chief manager in charge of
production, technical planning, quality control and marketing for more
than 45 years, Matthee has made great inroads in the creation of high
quality products in an area that was traditionally seen as ideal only
for distilling wine. Today this cellar wins numerous awards locally and
internationally. He also initiated the creation of the Oranje-Vaal Wine
Show Association and acted as the chairperson of the show’s technical
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