Global drinks company Australian Vintage has announced the certification of its owned and operated vineyards by Sustainable Winegrowing Australia.

As one of Australia’s largest vineyard owners with over 2,600 hectares under vine, Australian Vintage has been recognised for its true commitment and understanding of sustainable winegrowing practices.

Australian Vintage, which grows and sources premium grapes from the likes of the Barossa Valley, Hunter Valley and Murray Darling regions, faced external auditors National Association for Sustainable Agriculture Australia (NASAA) and Sci-Qual International, with the two auditors concluding that no corrective actions were required.

Jurie Germishuys, Australian Vintage Senior Viticulture Manager, said: “The certification is a great achievement of our operations and viticulture teams at each site and the business as a whole, as we formalise our approach and commitment to sustainable winemaking. It’s important we do good, for the land, our business and future generations.

“The SWA certification supports Australian Vintage in progressing our sustainability roadmap, incorporating regenerative agriculture practices and monitoring impact.

“Across our vineyards we’ve installed soil moisture probes that allow us to water when required, preventing excess water use and soil erosion, as well as replacing machinery and equipment with energy efficient alternatives like our electric forklifts. We’ll continue to investigate native plant species to increase biodiversity and attract beneficial insects.”

Sustainable Winegrowing Australia encourages continuous improvement across all elements, including water, energy, land and soil, waste, biodiversity, and people and business.

Recent data from the IWSR has shown a preference for sustainably made wine, with 65 per cent of Australian wine drinkers opting for it. Meanwhile, 54 per cent of wine drinks globally only trust sustainable wine that is officially certified.

Dr Mardi Longbottom, Manager of Sustainability and Viticulture at the Australian Wine Research Institute, who manages the technical aspects of the program, commented on the increased uptake in membership.

“We are encouraged by the momentum and increasing ambition of our growing membership and are confident that we will achieve world leading recognition.

“By purchasing wines from a certified producer, consumers can feel confident that they’re supporting sustainable-minded growers and winemakers, who are on a journey to shape the Australian wine community for good.”

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