The estate falls within the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve where conservation and sustainable use of natural resources are pursued. The results are wines with pristine fruit and great balance without character domination. This makes them elegant drinking wines and great partners with food.
Paul Cluver Wines are the result of a close-knit family. Guided by Dr Paul Cluver, neurosurgeon, apple farmer and chairman of Capespan and Vinfruco and run by General Manager Paul Cluver junior. The winemaker Andries Burger is married to Inge Cluver who also works in the business with her sisters Karin and Liesl.
Dr. Paul Cluver – a real Renaissance Man - who has irrevocably changed and catalysed change in the South African Wine Industry. Paul Frederich de Villiers Cluver has been described as an exemplary businessman, an innovative fruit farmer, a pioneering wine farmer and a philanthropist. His leadership skills have resulted in him serving on the boards of various national and international companies. He is regarded as one of the best qualified neurosurgeons in the world with four medical degrees to his name. In addition to which he has been awarded an honorary doctorate in agriculture.
Influenced by his missionary grandparents, believing that privileged people are oblig
Nature FriendlyPaul Cluver Wines is situated in Elgin on the De Rust estate. De Rust has been in the family since Dr Paul Cluver's great grandfather's time. Dr Cluver has long since been a conservation supporter, having started undertaking conservation measures on the estate since 1970. Dr Cluver is still the chairman of the Groenlandberg Conservancy, which he helped initiate in 1998. Today the conservancy spans some 34 000ha, named after the Groenlandberg and Nature Reserve, which is the core of the conservancy. Furthermore, Paul Cluver Wines falls within the Kogelberg Biosphere Reserve area, declared by UNESCO.
De Rust is one of the first farms in South Africa to enter into a stewardship contract agreement with CapeNature to conserve the pristine habitat on the property in perpetuity, by means of provisions attached to the property's title deeds. The conserved area is in excess of 1000ha, and is now called the Cluver Family Reserve. It is being managed according to a management plan that was drawn up by staff of the CapeNature Stewardship Programme. This reserve includes a game camp for antelope that used to occur in the area. The property has 3 types of vegetation: Elgin Shale Fynbos, Western Ruens Shale Renosterveld and Kogelberg Sandstone Fynbos, the first two of which are critically endangered. Paul Cluver Wines is a member of the Green Mountain Eco Route which has as its slogan 'blending wine and biodiversity'. This is a new project that the Cluvers have helped initiate, which has developed a tourism wine route that is strongly linked to the biodiversity values of the area, and also promotes the Groenlandberg Conservancy.
Organic / Biodynamic
Paul Cluver Wines manages the farm in keeping with the standards of Integrated Production of Wine (IPW). IPW is a system whereby Mother Nature is employed to her full potential with as little human interference as possible. When implemented correctly this system leads to both environmentally friendly and profitable wine production.
Water Conservation policies
Paul Cluver Wines has got several water purification dams on the farm for the management of waste water and was hailed by the department of water affairs for the way in which we handle our waste water.
To ensure the effective use of water with regards to irrigation we make use of a neutron probe, together with evaporation measurements coupled with crop factors and a water bomb measure the actual water stress of the plants before we irrigate. We are thus able to ensure that we irrigate with the highest possible degree of efficiency.
Recycling of dry goods
Paul Cluver Wines is in the process of implementing a system of recycling for all its waste products including glass and paper. All organic material is used to produce fertilizer.
Actions to neutralise carbon footprint
We are doing everything possible to reduce the use of energy starting with the effective measurement of our energy, ranging from fuel and electricity usage.
We have also been working with WWF and the Stellenbosch University to help determine our Carbon Footprint. The biggest hurdle is however that nowhere in the world is there reliable methodology for the objective determination of a carbon footprint. WWF has also criticised the planting of trees especially in an area like the Western Cape where trees were not part of the natural habitat. Once the industry has determined the right course of action we will be following that.
Paul Cluver Wines has a baby care centre and a crèche with over 30 children. Paul Cluver Wines has also provided land and took the leadership in providing a school for the farm workers children in 1957. The school currently has over 600 learners and the Chairperson of the school is Karin Cluver.
Paul Cluver Wines also formed one of the first ever empowerment projects in South Africa, which is one of the most successful empowerment projects of its kind in the country. The farm has over 200 shareholders which were previously disadvantaged and owns almost 200 hectares of land. A large proportion of the 200 shareholders work for Paul Cluver Wines.