Wine Q & A
Lots of reds and whites are getting greener
Q: We want the wines we purchase to be as "green" as possible. Who's doing the best job, in your opinion? A: Many wineries are making progress...
Q: We want the wines we purchase to be as "green" as possible. Who's doing the best job, in your opinion?
A: Many wineries are making progress on many fronts: in the vineyard, where pesticides and chemical fertilizers are being banned; in the winery, where recycled construction materials, biofuels, solar and other green energy and carbon offsets are being explored; and especially in the types of packaging being used. Among the leaders are Willamette Valley Vineyards in Oregon, and Fetzer, Parducci and Paul Dolan in California.
A major area of opportunity is the actual packaging of wines. Heavy glass bottles, though they may be recyclable, still consume far too many resources in my view, for the minimal impact they have on the aesthetic pleasure of purchasing and consuming wine. Fetzer, for one, has embarked on what the winery calls "a lightweighting initiative," which will reduce the carbon footprint of its packaging "throughout the entire value chain, from bottle production to shipping all the way to your home." Look for even more weight-saving trends, especially in less-expensive, drink-now wines.
The world's leading producer of Beaujolais Nouveau, Georges Duboeuf, will be shipping at least some of its wines in plastic wine bottles this fall. Bag-in-box wines also reduce shipping weight by a huge percentage, and the package is mostly recyclable.
Paul Gregutt answers questions weekly in the Wine section. He can be reached by e-mail at email@example.com.
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