Yes they really do. According to decanter.com, the official proposal to do this, to legalise the adding of water to the grape must, has already been passed by the South Africa’s Wine and Spirit Board and it is now being under review by the Government. The plan is for the new law to be in place before the Spring 2012 harvest (southern hemisphere = spring harvest). Apparently their reasoning is that they want to produce more lower alcohol wines, as these are growing in popularity. What they haven’t taken into account is that EU wine law prohibits this, so none of the wine will be allowed into the EU. As this is a key market for South African wine exports, it seems that they are shooting themselves in the foot here. What bothers me more than their economic suicide bid, is that surely the wines will suffer. You add water, you dilute the flavour. Is bland newly fashionable? We do not offer any South African personalised wine at Euromarque. That is certainly unlikely to change now.