What is Sustainable Winemaking? Frog's Leap Vineyard

Image credit: Frog’s Leap Winery

It’s a wonderful thing to see big food, and now, big wine, start to wholly embrace sustainable, all around green growth and processing methods.

What is Sustainability?

The concept that everything we require as human beings comes from our natural surroundings is at the core of what sustainability is. The trees, the rocks, the soil, the water…the plants and animals. Sustainability most directly says that we need to find a way to meet our current societies needs, without compromising the needs of future generations.

The world still has a ways down the road to wander, but the best thing we can do to speed up the process is to spread awareness.

Let’s consider what we use.

CustomMade notes that Americans drink upwards of 9.4 billion gallons of alcohol each year.  Broken down to 87% beer, 8% wine, and 5% spirits.  “The environmental impact of producing, packaging, and selling all those beverages could make an environmentalist reach for a drink. Breweries and wineries consume large quantities of water, raw materials, and other natural resources.”

So what can we, as wine fanatics, do to keep sipping on the nectar of the gods while allowing our children and grandchildren to do the same?  We can start by encouraging wine producers to enact sustainable winemaking, by beginning to greenify their vineyards.  Sustainable wine growing organizations and programs have begun to pop up throughout California.

These associations advocate for vineyards to embrace ever-greener methods, and give special recognition to the ones who strive yearly to improve their practices.  Model wineries, like Fetzner and Frog’s Leap, have begun recycling their waste, using solar power, and dry farming.  Simply beginning to introduce biodynamic concepts will remind us that both us and the grape vine, literally (it’s science) came from the same star dust.  It wont take much more to catch on, global sustainable winemaking practices are attainable. We just need to remain open minded, positive, and have a love for our planet. We can still drink all the wine we want, but let’s try to help the Earth to continue to provide it for our children. Infographic below…

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