By James Wells
Angove Family Winemakers have confirmed they are committed to converting all of their vineyards to organic over the years ahead.
Angove regional export manager, Jonathan O’Neill, told TheShout that the business is recording double-digit growth from the organic wine category and the move to complete conversion makes good commercial sense as well as delivering sensible sustainable outcomes for the environment and the vineyards themselves.
“We were one of the early producers in the organic spectrum using grapes from long term, already converted growers. We started about 10 years ago converting a lot of our vineyards over to organics and we would be at about 60% now, and moving forward we will convert all of our vineyards over," he said.
“Complete conversion is our aim and that's what we are trying to do. We have our Warboys vineyard in McLaren Vale that is certified as both Organic and Biodynamic, and this is all part of making our viticulture and winemaking more sustainable with less inputs going into them as well. The wines really do express their sense of place better when the grapes are farmed this way and wines are crafted with minimal intervention – the way nature intended it to be.
“It is also about making sure the next generation receives the vineyard in good condition. So it is partly an internal philosophy of the company, but also we are finding the organic brands have been growing very strongly in Australia and overseas because it is another point of difference and a unique selling proposition. Organics have certainly grown substantially in the last five years, but by being an early adopter and being strong in the category, we have picked up a lot of business.
“We have talked a lot about preservative free wines over the last couple of years and whether we would go down that track. We are concerned about the wine making process and how will the wines age, so at the moment we are still probably sitting on our hands and we haven’t made a decision whether we will go forward on preservative free or not. But I have seen some preservative free wines coming out of the McLaren Vale and I think they are very interesting.”