The French South African Chamber of Commerce & Industry (FSACCI) recently held an event to celebrate the Beaujolais Nouveau & triumphant French business!


As we will discover, the rich history of the Beaujolais Nouveau showcases the pinnacle of successful marketing. What’s more, South Africa’s involvement in producing wine has seen it unite with France during this time! As big supporters of this alliance, we proudly sponsored the night.

Before we delve into what took place, let’s get a historical appreciation for Beaujolais Nouveau.


A Little About the Beaujolais Nouveau

As the name suggests, Beaujolais Nouveau is based on the French wine, which is usually produced from the Gamay grape. This red, fruity wine certainly has a history!

In 1937, The French wine certifier, AOC, outlined that the wine could only be sold after December 15. By 1985, the date was changed to the third Thursday of November (which is still the celebrated release date today!).

By the time the Beaujolais Nouveau is over, over 65 million bottles are distributed and drunk around the world.

So, what makes this particular wine so popular? Afterall, the release date is just a few days after the harvest, meaning the wine lacks maturity and finesse. Well, the answer to this question is what makes the whole Beaujolais Nouveau so notable! The Beaujolais Nouveau is perhaps one of the most profound examples of ingenious marketing. Let’s take a look at how the release date sparked such an animated response.


Time to Celebrate

Originally, local wine producers drank Beaujolais at 12:01am to celebrate the end of the harvest season and the commencement of legal distribution. However, the tradition quickly became a highly anticipated event. By the 1950s, local distributors commenced a race against one another. The winner was the first distributor to deliver the bottles to Paris!

In the 1970s, winemaker Georges Duboeuf recognised the potential to market the wine in this way. The Beaujolais Nouveau not only sold the young wine for a good price, but selling wine within weeks of the harvest was also great for cash flow. As such, Georges supported sales by organising special Beaujolais Nouveau celebrations. His campaigning and marketing efforts have largely contributed the event’s notoriety!


Beaujolais Nouveau in Cape Town

The FSACCI invigorated their presence in Cape Town with their own Beaujolais Nouveau event! More than 90 people attended, which including the Consul Général de France, Laurent Amar, plus the new generation of entrepreneurs.

The discussion was largely based on the success story that is the Beaujolais Nouveau. We also explored the ways in which the Beaujolais Nouveau has furthered the economic collaboration between France and South Africa, specifically because both regions are involved in the production of wine.

The dynamic prosperity of the French economic community in Cape Town was also explored. In fact, the event showcased a surprising fact: there is an urban vineyard in Cape Town –  Signal Hills Wines!

Of course, the event also offered wine and cheese tasting, as well as networking opportunities. Keen to get a visual? Don’t hesitate to check out the beautiful photo gallery from the night.

Overall, it was an honour to sponsor this event, and experience the successes of French-South African business during such an iconic historical moment!

About the Author:

Jacqueline Harding is passionate about sharing information, news and stories in a user-friendly way to educate and uplift people from all across the globe.