Sustainability issues:

Winery waste to winery profit

Published on September 19, 2016

As part of the sustainability drive, winery waste is increasingly under the microscope. It may traditionally have gone to quite a substantial landfill, but the stuff is chock-full of useful, and profitable, bits and pieces. To the extent that the terminology has been changing to speak of winery by-products, not waste.

Climate change winners and losers

Published on March 3, 2016

It’s easy to forget that wine is an agricultural product. A changing climate is affecting us all, though humans probably have more adaptability than plants. And grapevines producing high quality fruit for wine are especially sensitive to climate change.

European sustainability initiatives

Published on January 29, 2016

Wine industry national sustainability codes of practice are almost commonplace in the New World. Europe is there too, but presents a much more fragmented picture of initiatives.

New Zealand shows the specificity of sustainability

Published on January 6, 2015

New Zealand may be ahead of the sustainability game with almost all producers signed up to some sort of sustainability accreditation system, whether the country’s own Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand (SWNZ), or certified organics, biodynamics or ISO 14001, but the situation on the ground is far from a one-size-fits-all model. Anyone hoping for a single index that measures producers’ paths towards increasing sustainability is sadly disillusioned.

Reducing the drip, drip, drip

Published on May 8, 2013

Water is one of our most precious resources, and irrigation is vital to much vineyard growth around the world, but how are growers reducing its use?

Deliberating the nature of viticulture

Published on July 27, 2012

Sense of place and certification issues came into focus during a May 2012 Circle of Wine Writers panel discussion on organic, biodynamic and natural viticulture.

Sustainability on the move

Published on April 26, 2012

The necessary mantra that sustainability is a journey not a destination is becoming manifest. And to prove that enterprises are taking continuous steps of improvement along this journey requires measurement, reporting, traceability and improvement action plans, often accompanied by independent certification.

A guide to the sustainability guides

Published on March 29, 2012

As the need to take better care of the planet increases, sustainability issues have moved onto the agenda. This is a “cut out and keep” guide to the various initiatives in the wine industry.

Sustainable viticulture in Burgundy

Published on October 13, 2011

With pioneering icons such as Domaine Leflaive and Domaine Pierre Morey who live and breathe biodynamics, Burgundy has long been at the forefront of green viticulture. But in a perfect marketing storm where almost everyone says they’re doing sustainable viticulture, even if they don’t really, how do you separate marketing myth from substantive sustainability?

The greening of the Douro Valley

Published on July 5, 2011

A decade ago, the Douro vineyards were a brown, bare-earthed environment, where patches of dry, Mediterranean climate-adapted scrubland juxtaposed with bare earth beneath vines. As a result of a growing use of cover crop, the Douro vineyards are greening over, literally and environmentally.

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