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Green / Sustainable Wine

Natural Wine, Organic & Sustainable Defined ...

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Wines marked with the green leaf icon are produced using organic, biodynamic or sustainable practices as certified by various domestic and international organizations. Any spirits marked with the green leaf have been made using sustainable methods designed to decrease their production impact on the environment.

Does the green leaf mean it is a natural wine?

Though it is a widely used term, “natural wine” is difficult to indisputably define. Other terms are almost as popular: “low intervention,” “live,” “raw,” and “green wine,” to name a few. Isabelle Legeron, Master of Wine, in her book, Natural Wine explains the term best.

“Whether or not it is certified (or indeed certifiable), natural wine does exist. It is wine from vineyards that are farmed organically, at the very least, and which is produced without adding or removing anything during vinification, apart from a dash of sulfites at bottling.”

While this definition may sound ideal to most, the USA defines “organic wine” differently. Read on for clarification.

What is the difference between organic wine and wine made from organic grapes?

Organic wine in the USA is regulated by the National Organic Program (NOP) of the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service, in accordance with the Organic Foods Production Act of 1990. By definition, organic winegrowing integrates cultural, biological and mechanical practices that foster the cycling of resources, promote ecological balance and conserve biodiversity. Synthetic fertilizers, sewage sludge, irradiation, and genetic engineering are not allowed. Products from outside of the cycle are used minimally. The USDA NOP allows for two categories of finished wine:

  1. Organic wine, as defined and labeled in the USA, is wine made from organic grapes with no added sulfites. Each country has its own laws on how to define organic wine. But any wine labeled “organic” sold in the USA, whether it is domestically made or imported, is not allowed to have any added sulfites. However, less than 20 mg/L can occur naturally.
  2. Wine made from organic grapes, which allows minimal addition of sulfites (less than 100 mg/L) cannot be labeled as “organic wine” in the USA, but can mention the use of organic grapes.

What is biodynamic wine?

Biodynamic wine is created from a system of winegrowing similar to that for organic wine, but includes various concepts from the ideas of Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925). Steiner’s farming methods treat soil fertility, plant growth and products, and livestock care and products as ecologically interrelated. Biodynamic agriculture uses compost and manure for fertilization, natural herb and mineral supplements for field sprays and prohibits the use of anything artificial. It treats the entire vineyard as an interrelated part of a self-sufficient farm. Biodynamic farming considers the influence of weather, seasons and movements of the moon and planets on the rhythms of the farm. The term “biodynamic” refers to both the agricultural methods used to grow the vines, as well as winery processing.

What does sustainable wine mean?

Sustainable wine production can be defined by three main goals: environmental stewardship, economic profitability and social and economic equity. This means that sustainable farmers do their best to give back to the environment and to the community, while also furthering their business. Sustainable wine growers may largely use organic or biodynamic practices, and occasionally or minimally use synthetic materials (only the least harmful), but have the flexibility to choose the methods that work best for their goals. The sustainable label tells the consumer which wines are made with ecological, economical and social principles in mind. Its limitation is that it is locally defined and therefore varies regionally.

What are sustainable spirits?

While regulations on the spirits side of sustainable are still in their infancy, that hasn’t stopped individual producers from taking heed of conscientious production techniques to reduce their carbon footprint. Distillers striving to make their operations more sustainable are implementing a wide array of eco-friendly procedures ranging from renewable power solutions, water and heat reclamation systems, utilizing locally sourced agricultural produce and composting or reusing any refuse as fertilizer or feed for livestock. In addition to optimizing the efficiency of the manufacturing process, eliminating harmful single use plastics and repurposing or recycling waste products such as barrels and bottles are also proving to be effective strategies for improving sustainability. All spirits labeled “organic” must meet the regulations provided by both Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) and the USDA.

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  • Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut Front Label
    Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • WW92
    • JS92
    • WS90
    • W&S90
    4.4 957 Ratings
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  • Avaline White Blend  Front Label
    Avaline White Blend
    Other White Blends from Penedes, Spain
    • WW91
    4.3 85 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $19.99
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  • Bollinger Brut Special Cuvee Front Label
    Bollinger Brut Special Cuvee
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • D96
    • WW94
    • JD93
    • WS92
    • JS92
    • WE92
    • W&S91
    • RP91
    4.3 303 Ratings
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  • Avaline Rose  Front Label
    Avaline Rose
    Rosé from Provence, South of France, France
    • WW90
    4.4 92 Ratings
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  • Moet & Chandon Imperial Brut (187ML Split) Front Label
    Moet & Chandon Imperial Brut (187ML Split)
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
    • TP92
    • WS91
    • W&S90
    • D90
    4.4 75 Ratings
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    15 97
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  • JCB No. 69 Brut Rose Cremant de Bourgogne  Front Label
    JCB No. 69 Brut Rose Cremant de Bourgogne
    Rosé Sparkling Wine from Burgundy, France
    • WW92
    4.4 118 Ratings
    Currently Unavailable $26.99
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    28
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  • Bellissima Prosecco Brut Front Label
    Bellissima Prosecco Brut
    Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Veneto, Italy
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    • Chandon Brut Front Label
      Chandon Brut
      Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from California
      • TP91
      • WW91
      • D90
      4.1 165 Ratings
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      24
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    • Moet & Chandon Ice Imperial Front Label
      Moet & Chandon Ice Imperial
      Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
        4.5 103 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $69.99
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      • Veuve Clicquot Brut Rose Front Label
        Veuve Clicquot Brut Rose
        Rosé Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
        • W&S93
        • JS92
        • WS91
        • D90
        4.6 208 Ratings
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      • Krug Grande Cuvee Brut (167th Edition) with Gift Box  Gift Product Image
        Krug Grande Cuvee Brut (167th Edition) with Gift Box
        Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
        • V97
        • RP96
        • WS95
        5.0 6 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $249.97
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        249 97
        249 97
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      • Ferrari Brut Front Label
        Ferrari Brut
        Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Trentino, Trentino-Alto Adige, Italy
        • WW91
        • JS90
        • WE90
        • WS90
        4.1 92 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $23.99
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        28
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      • Graham's 20 Year Old Tawny Port Front Label
        Graham's 20 Year Old Tawny Port
        Port from Douro, Portugal
        • D96
        • JS94
        • WS93
        • WE90
        4.4 205 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $59.99
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        59 99
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      • J Vineyards Brut Rose Front Label
        J Vineyards Brut Rose
        Rosé Sparkling Wine from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
        • CG92
        • JS92
        • D91
        • RP90
        • RP90
        • WE90
        4.4 29 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $39.99
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      • Ruinart Brut Blanc de Blancs Front Label
        Ruinart Brut Blanc de Blancs
        Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
        • WS93
        • JS93
        • WE92
        • RP90
        4.6 135 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $89.99
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      • Mumm Napa Brut Prestige Front Label
        Mumm Napa Brut Prestige
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        • WE92
        • WW91
        • WS90
        4.0 446 Ratings
        Currently Unavailable $19.99
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        24
        19 99
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      • Domaine Bousquet Brut Rose Front Label
        Domaine Bousquet Brut Rose
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          4.1 103 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $13.99
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        • Jansz Premium Rose Front Label
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          • WW92
          • D92
          • WS91
          • W&S90
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          4.4 91 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $27.99
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          27 99
          27 99
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        • Chandon Brut Rose  Front Bottle Shot
          Chandon Brut Rose
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          • JS92
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          • RP89
          4.1 125 Ratings
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        • Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut (375ML half-bottle) Front Label
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          • WW92
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          • WS90
          • W&S90
          4.4 127 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $34.97
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          34 97
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        • Tiamo Prosecco Made with Organic Grapes  Front Label
          Tiamo Prosecco Made with Organic Grapes
          Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Prosecco, Italy
          • WW90
          3.9 43 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $15.99
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          15 99
          15 99
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        • Eppa SupraFruta Organic Red Sangria Front Label
          Eppa SupraFruta Organic Red Sangria
          Fruit Wine from California
          • TP90
          3.9 203 Ratings
          Currently Unavailable $10.99
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          12
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        • Gazela Vinho Verde Front Label
          Gazela Vinho Verde
          Other White Blends from Vinho Verde, Portugal
            3.8 312 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $7.99
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          • Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut (1.5 Liter Magnum) Front Label
            Veuve Clicquot Yellow Label Brut (1.5 Liter Magnum)
            Non-Vintage Sparkling Wine from Champagne, France
            • WW92
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            • WS90
            • W&S90
            4.4 49 Ratings
            Currently Unavailable $149.97
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            149 97
            149 97
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          • Perrier-Jouet Blason Rose  Front Label
            Perrier-Jouet Blason Rose
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            • W&S92
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            • CG90
            • D90
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            Currently Unavailable $64.99
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            85
            64 99
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