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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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  • Movia Veliko Bianco 2010 Front Label
    Movia Veliko Bianco 2010
    Other White Blends from Slovenia
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    • Domaine Cazes Le Canon du Marechal 2010 Front Label
      Domaine Cazes Le Canon du Marechal 2010
      Other White Blends from Languedoc-Roussillon, France
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        13 99
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      • Ritual Casablanca Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2010 Front Label
        Ritual Casablanca Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2010
        Sauvignon Blanc from Chile
        • W&S92
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      • Esk Valley Chardonnay 2010 Front Label
        Esk Valley Chardonnay 2010
        Chardonnay from Hawkes Bay, New Zealand
        • WE90
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        Currently Unavailable $9.99
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      • Paul Dolan Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc 2010 Front Label
        Paul Dolan Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc 2010
        Sauvignon Blanc from North Coast, California
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          21 99
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        • Adega Pena das Donas Almalagra Godello 2010 Front Label
          Adega Pena das Donas Almalagra Godello 2010
          Godello from Spain
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            24 99
            24 99
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          • Tiamo Pinot Grigio 2010 Front Label
            Tiamo Pinot Grigio 2010
            Pinot Gris/Grigio from Veneto, Italy
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              14 99
              14 99
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            • Bonterra Organically Grown Viognier 2010 Front Label
              Bonterra Organically Grown Viognier 2010
              Viognier from North Coast, California
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                Currently Unavailable $24.99
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                24 99
                24 99
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              • Cambria Katherine's Vineyard Chardonnay (half-bottle) 2010 Front Label
                Cambria Katherine's Vineyard Chardonnay (half-bottle) 2010
                Chardonnay from Santa Maria Valley, Central Coast, California
                • WE91
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                Currently Unavailable $13.99
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                13 99
                13 99
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              • Voyager Estate Chardonnay 2010 Front Label
                Voyager Estate Chardonnay 2010
                Chardonnay from Margaret River, Western Australia, Australia
                • WS92
                0.0 0 Ratings
                Currently Unavailable $47.99
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                47 99
                47 99
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              • Lucinda & Millie Organic Chardonnay 2010 Front Label
                Lucinda & Millie Organic Chardonnay 2010
                Chardonnay from North Coast, California
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                  13 99
                  13 99
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                • Gundlach Bundschu Chardonnay 2010 Front Label
                  Gundlach Bundschu Chardonnay 2010
                  Chardonnay from Sonoma County, California
                  • WE90
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                  Currently Unavailable $19.99
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                  27
                  19 99
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                • Sitios de Bodega Con Class Verdejo 2010 Front Label
                  Sitios de Bodega Con Class Verdejo 2010
                  Verdejo from Rueda, Spain
                  • RP90
                  0.0 0 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $12.99
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                  12 99
                  12 99
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                • Yalumba Y Series Viognier 2010 Front Label
                  Yalumba Y Series Viognier 2010
                  Viognier from Barossa Valley, Barossa, South Australia, Australia
                  • WS89
                  • WE88
                  0.0 0 Ratings
                  Currently Unavailable $13.99
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                  13 99
                  13 99
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                • Tangent Paragon Vineyard Grenache Blanc 2010 Front Label
                  Tangent Paragon Vineyard Grenache Blanc 2010
                  Grenache Blanc from Central Coast, California
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                    Currently Unavailable $13.95
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                    17
                    13 95
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                  • Frei Brothers Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2010 Front Label
                    Frei Brothers Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2010
                    Sauvignon Blanc from Russian River, Sonoma County, California
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                    • Louis SIPP Nature'S Pinot Gris 2010 Front Label
                      Louis SIPP Nature'S Pinot Gris 2010
                      Pinot Gris/Grigio from Alsace, France
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                        29 99
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                      • Tangent Paragon Vineyard Pinot Gris 2010 Front Label
                        Tangent Paragon Vineyard Pinot Gris 2010
                        Pinot Gris/Grigio from Central Coast, California
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                          Currently Unavailable $15.29
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                          17
                          15 28
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                        • d'Arenberg The Hermit Crab Viognier Marsanne 2010 Front Label
                          d'Arenberg The Hermit Crab Viognier Marsanne 2010
                          Rhone White Blends from McLaren Vale, South Australia, Australia
                          • D90
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                          Currently Unavailable $17.99
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                          17 99
                          17 99
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                        • Benton Lane Pinot Gris 2010 Front Label
                          Benton Lane Pinot Gris 2010
                          Pinot Gris/Grigio from Willamette Valley, Oregon
                          • W&S93
                          3.8 8 Ratings
                          Currently Unavailable $18.99
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                          18 99
                          18 99
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                        • Esk Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2010 Front Label
                          Esk Valley Sauvignon Blanc 2010
                          Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, New Zealand
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                            16 99
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                          • Chehalem 3 Vineyard Pinot Gris 2010 Front Label
                            Chehalem 3 Vineyard Pinot Gris 2010
                            Pinot Gris/Grigio from Willamette Valley, Oregon
                            • RP90
                            0.0 0 Ratings
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                            19 99
                            19 99
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                          • Zocker Paragon Vineyard Gruner Veltliner 2010 Front Label
                            Zocker Paragon Vineyard Gruner Veltliner 2010
                            Gruner Veltliner from Central Coast, California
                            • WE90
                            0.0 0 Ratings
                            Currently Unavailable $18.99
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                            18 99
                            18 99
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                          • Bonterra Organically Grown Sauvignon Blanc 2010 Front Label
                            Bonterra Organically Grown Sauvignon Blanc 2010
                            Sauvignon Blanc from North Coast, California
                            • WE88
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                            Currently Unavailable $15.99
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                            15 99
                            15 99
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                          • Luna Vineyards Pinot Grigio 2010 Front Label
                            Luna Vineyards Pinot Grigio 2010
                            Pinot Gris/Grigio from California
                              3.7 7 Ratings
                              Currently Unavailable $11.99
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                              18
                              11 99
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