'Many farmworkers are still treated like slaves' - Bitter Grapes producer

Only one South African wine label has been taken off supermarket shelves in Denmark.

This is according to investigative journalist Tom Heinemann, who says that Robertson Winery was taken off the shelves in the Scandanavian nation on a temporary condition, following revelations in his documentary about the treatment of workers in some South African vineyards.

I don't question that there are good farms. I don't question that my film is a very sharp-edged film about the industry. But if I look at the websites of the vineyards that I visited, that's a completely different picture that I see on their own websites

Tom Heinemann, investigative journalist

In his documentary film, Bitter Grapes - Slavery in the Vineyards, Heinemann finds that workers are treated poorly in the South African vineyards he has investigated.

He views the treatment of these workers as being equivalent to 'modern day slavery'.

I saw housing that was literally falling apart, rain coming down the roofs. I saw people have to live off water from a drain ditch alongside a road. I saw toilets that were locked up, so they had to walk into the vineyards to do their toilet. I saw very very depressing things

Tom Heinemann, investigative journalist

While in South Africa to shoot Bitter Grapes, Heinemann visited about 12 vineyards. Not all of them made it into the final documentary.

My aim is not to shut down South Africa's wine industry. If you talk about an aim of a film like this, its to bring everything out in the open

Tom Heinemann, investigative journalist

Robertson Winery responded earlier this month to revelations in the documentary, saying that the vineyard is not tantamount to slavery.

Speaking to #NightTalk's Gugs Mhlungu and Sizwe Dhlomo, Heinemann says that his documentary is not about shutting down South Africa's wine industry, but to look at the poor treatment of workers and the need to do something about it.

He says that there have been damning reports in the past about the treatment of workers in South African vineyards, including findings by Human Rights Watch, but little appears to have changed.

Listen to the conversation below:

Read More
WC protesters torch vineyards

WC protesters torch vineyards

Western Cape protesters have started burning vineyards along the N1 Highway in De Doorns.

6 arrested after De Doorns protests

6 arrested after De Doorns protests

Several people have been arrested following violent protests that resulted in vineyards being torched.

Public hearings for farmworkers

Public hearings for farmworkers

Dept of Labour is holding public hearings in farming towns for farmworkers to speak up.

De Doorns farmworkers defiant

De Doorns farmworkers defiant

De Doorns farmworkers were offered a wage deal but still won’t return to work.

‘Minimum wage for farmworkers is disappointing’

‘Minimum wage for farmworkers is disappointing’

The Labour Department has announced a 95 cent increase for farmworkers and those in the forestry sector.

Popular articles
702 opens Walk the Talk entries, welcomes new sponsor MTN SA

702 opens Walk the Talk entries, welcomes new sponsor MTN SA

702 has officially launched The MTN Walk the Talk with 702 for 2017, and the 15-year event is getting better and bigger.

So what exactly is radical economic transformation?

So what exactly is radical economic transformation?

Wits associate professor of economics Christopher Malikane speaks to Azania Mosaka about the term that is being bandied about.

Getting to know MP, Dr Makhosi Khoza

Getting to know MP, Dr Makhosi Khoza

Dr Khoza is admired by South Africans for her role in the SABC inquiry as a ANC member of parliament.

Meet self-made millionaire (net worth – R400m!) property mogul Sisa Ngebulana

Meet self-made millionaire (net worth – R400m!) property mogul Sisa Ngebulana

How did Ngebulana build his empire? The Money Show’s Bruce Whitfield interviewed him for his weekly “ShapeShifter” feature.

Earn peanuts? How to best invest very small amounts...

Earn peanuts? How to best invest very small amounts...

Got a spare R200 or R300 a month? Here’s how to make that money work hard and grow…

Meet the founder of Capitec Bank, named ‘Best Bank on Earth and Cheapest in SA’

Meet the founder of Capitec Bank, named ‘Best Bank on Earth and Cheapest in SA’

Michiel le Roux speaks about the fascinating story behind the little bank that has the Big 4 shaking in their boots.

3 easy questions could bag you R2000!

3 easy questions could bag you R2000!

WIN R2000! But only if you can prove you're a whiz of the MTN Biz Quiz by answering the following three questions...

Blesserfinder: Matching you with a sugar daddy near you

Blesserfinder: Matching you with a sugar daddy near you

Is social trend Blesserfinder, where girls are allegedly matching up with rich 'benefactors' in exchange for sex, a real thing?