Paul Siguqa, age 41, has always desired to be a farmer. The fact that his parents were farmworkers in the Western Cape province of South Africa fueled his ambition. Today, Siguqa is the first Black person to own a wine farm in the Western Cape town of Franschhoek. Klein Goederust Franschhoek Boutique Winery was acquired for R12 million ($762,000) This was money he saved over a long period, including through his employment as a media manager.
Not only is owning a farm a milestone for Siguqa, but also for the Black population in his country, which is still struggling to gain control of the most lucrative sector of South Africa’s economy from the white minority.
He told BusinessLIVE, “You know, this is a dream come true, but I didn’t do it just for myself; I did it for those who must see that there is life and hope beyond the farm wall.” “Farmworkers had no experience outside of working in vineyards and earning far too little money. It is incredibly difficult to be a farmworker and the child of a farmworker.
Siguqa and his best friend Rodney Zimba discovered the original Klein Goederust farmhouse, which was in poor condition, two years ago. According to BusinessLIVE, the remaining vines at the winery were diseased and had to be destroyed.
After acquiring the winery, he and his business partner worked to restore the vineyards. The 1902-built original Klein Goederust farmhouse is now a restaurant and event space, while the stable is a wine tasting room.
Siguqa attributes a great deal of his success to his mother. He told Food for Mzansi that his mother continually inspired him to change the narrative about the children of farmworkers in South Africa, the majority of whom grow up to become farmworkers.
“Doing my small part to alter the narrative is my greatest accomplishment,” he said. “According to the story, if you are born the child of a farmworker, you may become the next farmworker. The greatest accomplishment is the creation of jobs. This is the greatest accomplishment in my opinion, and I would like us to build on it to create more jobs.”
Currently, Siguqa has 17 permanent employees, and during harvest season, he employs approximately 50 seasonal workers. The next step for Siguqa, who currently resides in Gauteng with his wife and two children, is to expand and acquire more land. Buying a cellar is one of his top priorities. He recently disclosed to Food for Mzansi that he has gone through the process of acquiring one, including purchasing all the necessary materials.