Peter Pentz was honoured with a special honorary award at the ARC National Master Dairyman Awards on Thursday 17 November 2022 for his lifetime contribution and dedicated commitment to the SA dairy industry over many decades.
This prestigious competition recognises South Africa's top commercial and smallholder performers in the industry and is recognised by significant stakeholders as a highlight of the country's agricultural calendar.
Pentz was one of the first SA farmers to import livestock semen in order to achieve genetic development. He was also the president of the South African Holstein Breeders Society and the founder and proprietor of Groote Post Genetics.
Pentz Snr was honoured as SA Agricultural Writers National Farmer of the Year in 1998, and the World Dairy Expo’s International Person of the Year in 2001, for his remarkable dairy industry accomplishments.
According to Pentz, it was a pleasant surprise when he received the call to learn that he was receiving the award. "Being recognised for my contribution to the dairy industry after being out of the sector for more than twenty years is very humbling", said Pentz during his acceptance speech.
Regarding the present issues that the country dairy sector is facing, Pentz stated that the situation is not significantly different from the past: "Unquestionably, we will persevere with optimism and continue to prevail". He continued by describing farmers as people of hope: "Where there is hope, there is light, the light that will lead us to a bright future."
Pentz is today the co-owner of Groote Post Wine Estate, a farm on the Cape West Coast where winemaking traditions have been revived by the Pentz family. The family’s dairy roots go back to 1904, with Pentz starting out as a third-generation dairyman delivering milk door to door by way of electric carts.
Today, Groote Post’s The Old Man’s Blend pays tribute to Pentz’s visionary switch from 40 years of dairy farming to producing world-class wine.
“No-one ever told me that they had a great bottle of my milk last night" is how this bold move is explained by Pentz.
His son Nick furthers this philosophy of excellence in their vineyards and cellar in the cool-climate Darling Hills. Pentz’s love for cattle carries on through his prized herd of Angus cattle.