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Young blueberry plants cloned at Fruitlab

Agricultural technology is alive and well and happening in Franschhoek. Steven Frankel and Craig Taylor have opened an agritech business called Fruitlab where they are focussing on tissue culture. They believe technology is very much the future of agriculture and can see themselves also being part of research and development in this field.

Tissue culture is a sophisticated way of reproduction, simply explained as cloning of plants. This method as opposed to, for instance planting seeds, provides predictability; part of a selected plant is used to produce a new plant identical to the parent plant and assures superior plants of the next generation. Should genetic variation be required though, Craig says it can be introduced using laboratory techniques.

Tackling Littering Together

In true Franschhoek fashion three local businesses have joined forces to tackle the twin problems of illegal dumping of refuse and littering – problems that have dramatically escalated in the past few months.

Paintsmiths, PicknPay and Col’Cacchio have combined to fund and employ a person, with his own bakkie, to patrol and clean areas that fall outside the municipality’s jurisdiction – such as along the Robertsvlei and Dassenberg Roads, at the Berg River Dam wall and carpark, around Matoppie and the area Berg River Dam area at the end of Robertsvlei Road.

From Paw Paws and Baobab to Litchi and Titch

Litchi & Titch's Lecia Durham & Debbie Shriekker

A new shop – almost entirely devoted to soft, smooth skin – has recently opened opposite the Franschhoek Town Hall. The Tatler stopped by to find out more.

Litchi and Titch is the brainchild of Lecia Durham with business partner Debbie Schriekker – respectively the Litchi and Titch in the business’ name. Lecia and Debbie both have sales and marketing backgrounds and share a passion for all things natural and environmentally conscious, especially cosmetics. Starting a business to profit from their passion seemed a logical step, so they took it in 2017. Their first product, a paw paw balm, proved an instant success and they soon started adding other products to the range.

Biltong & All That’s Good

Two locals taken their love for biltong and droëwors and turned it into a small business: Village Biltong & Deli.

Owner Herman du Plessis and shop manager Bets TerBlanche decided early on that they would only stock hand-selected, premium biltong products that are ethically sourced. “Our beef product suppliers rear their livestock with care and no steroids or growth hormones are given. You can taste the difference,” says Herman.

Three Wins for La Motte at Best of Wine Tourism Awards

La Motte Wine Estate

La Motte Wine Estate was crowned the winner in three of the seven categories of this year’s Best of Wine Tourism Awards. This international annual competition is designed to reward the wineries in each of the Great Wine Capitals Global Network’s member regions for their excellence.

Wesgro, the Official Tourism, Trade and Investment Promotion Agency for Cape Town and the Western Cape worked closely with Vinpro, a non-profit company that represents 2 500 South African wine producers, cellars and industry stakeholders in finalising these awards.

Mayor Opens Art & Craft Market

After officially opening the Franschhoek Art & Craft Market Executive Mayor Gesie van Deventer inspected the goods on offer. In the photo above she tries out a tea set sold by one of the traders, Ms Tarauai.

It’s been a long time coming but the new stalls for informal traders next to the town hall are finally being used. Executive Mayor Gesie van Deventer officiated at the opening of what is now dubbed the Franschhoek Art & Craft Market on Friday, 13 November.

La Petite Colombe Welcomed to Leeu Estates

The interiors at La Petite Colombe were crafted by MR Design Studio.

La Petite Colombe, sister restaurant to the highly acclaimed La Colombe in Constantia, re-opened its doors on 6 November at a stunning new location on Leeu Estates, on the outskirts of the village.

Leeu Collection’s Le Quartier Français was home to La Petite Colombe from its opening in August 2017, when the hotel group invited the La Colombe team to manage the food and beverage offering, as part of its desire to partner with the very best in class in the fields of wine-making, artistic endeavour and dining out. La Petite Colombe’s success (including an Eat Out Top Ten award and stellar reviews on TripAdvisor) led it to look for a larger venue, which it has found on Leeu Estates.

Good Food & Co in Good Hands

Emmarentia Klaasen and Joey Stiglingh (left) have sold Good Food & Co to Nico Vorster and Kelly Pilkington (right).

The restauranteur sisters Emmarentia Klaasen and Joey Stiglingh, of Good Food & Co, have hung up their aprons and handed the keys to their successful restaurant and deli to Nico Vorster and Kelly Pilkington.

Woolworths Franschhoek to Go Single-use Plastic Bag Free

Woolworths’ new low cost reusable bag

Woolworths’ Franschhoek store will be single-use plastic shopping bag free from 9 November.  Despite Covid-19 lockdown disruptions, this is part of a national 121-store rollout in response to Woolworths’ commitment to phase out single-use plastic bags.

Since making this commitment Woolworths has launched a ‘low cost’ reusable bag in food stores and a paper bag for its fashion, beauty and home purchases and has already successfully switched 25 stores to being single-use plastic shopping bag free.  Both bags are made locally by supplier development beneficiaries and constructed from either fabric made from recycled plastic (PET) or Forest Stewardship Council-certified recycled content, sourced from the same mill where Woolworths (FSC N002141) sends its recyclable cardboard and paper.

“Smart, sustainable solutions often take time to get off the ground but when they do, they change our world for the better instantly.  While Covid 19 has impacted our roll out, we remain committed in our journey to remove single use plastic from our stores. Together with our customers we are looking forward to removing all single use plastic bags from our stores.” concludes Feroz Koor: Woolworths Holdings Group Head of Sustainability.

Text: Editorial Desk | Image: Supplied

Old School | True Sport

The historic 1907 school will become the high performance gym and overlook a landscaped courtyard.

There has, for some time now, been a sense in the village that something is afoot at Franschhoek High School. This is indeed the case and the Franschhoek Tatler is delighted to be able to officially share the inside story of Train Camp – Franschhoek.

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