By Deborah Jackson, editor National Liquor News

Villa Maria will release its first organic wine in Australia, the 2013 Villa Maria Private Bin Organic Merlot, available from 1 October.

The organic wine is the product of 16 years of work towards natural and sustainable vineyard and winemaking practices as the company edges towards its goal of having 50 per cent of its company owned vineyards organically managed by 2020.

Fabian Yukich, executive director of Villa Maria, has been a passionate proponent for sustainability at Villa Maria for 18 years.

“Villa Maria was a founding member of Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand and this was in line with our long held goal to act in an environmentally responsible manner and leave the land in good condition for the next generation.

"Having all our vineyards and wineries accredited under SWNZ (Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand) means that each year we have to set new targets to continuously improve our environmental performance,” Yukich told TheShout.

“All our vineyards and grower vineyards are accredited under Sustainable Winegrowing and currently 27 per cent of company owned vineyards are organically managed.

"It is difficult to say whether all our wines will one day be organically made, however it is true that the objectives of Sustainable Winegrowing NZ which support are targeting continuous improvement within all New Zealand vineyards and wineries”

The 2013 Villa Maria Private Bin Organic Merlot will be available nationally for RRP $20.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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