Despite declining wine consumption figures on the domestic market and challenging trading conditions, at least 64 new wineries or merchant houses have started operating in the Cape over the past year.

John Platter Wine Guide publisher Andrew McDowall, said in launching the 2007 edition, that 6,000 wines had been tasted, of which 800 were new wines, while 200 had been phased out.

It is estimated that there were at least 700 wineries and merchant houses operating in South Africa, while there were also several new wineries which missed the deadline for the guide.

The guide goes on sale in South Africa at the end of this month.