Australian wine businesses moving ahead to tackle climate change

Sustainable Winegrowing Australia has released its inaugural Impact Report detailing the wide range of sustainable practices being successfully implemented by vineyards and wineries across Australia.

The report outlines the program’s first national data set and the significant steps being taken towards net zero emissions for the sector, with all members measuring and reporting their scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions.

The Sustainable Winegrowing Australia program, governed by the Australian Wine Research Institute (AWRI), Australian Grape & Wine (AGW) and Wine Australia, is a community of change-making grapegrowers and winemakers who want to make a positive difference for people and the planet.

“More than half of Australian wine consumers are driven by sustainability and this number continues to increase alongside the growing global demands for products that demonstrate sustainable practices,” said CEO of AGW and Chair of Sustainable Winegrowing Australia Tony Battaglene.

“The Sustainable Winegrowing Australia program has almost 900 members, ranging from small independents to large well-known household brands, leading the charge for sustainable-minded wine lovers.”

Battaglene added that the new report outlines what is possible regarding sustainable practices, and the standard of continuous improvement that the sector should be held to.

“By seeking out and purchasing wines from program members or certified producers, consumers can have every confidence they are supporting sustainable-minded growers and winemakers that are helping to shape the Australian wine sector for the better,” he continued.

“Sustainability credentials are key to remaining competitive in an international market, and the new report highlights how program members are working to match and contribute to the global sustainability standards increasingly expected by leading markets around the world.

“Program members are focused on strategies to continuously improve quality, better understand region and site, improve competitiveness and communicate Australia’s wine offerings to the world.”

The Impact Report highlights areas of strength for Sustainable Winegrowing Australia members across four key areas – Energy, Water, Waste, and People and Business:

  • Energy: The program’s members are transitioning towards the Australian grape and wine sector’s target of net zero emissions, with 100% of members measuring and reporting on scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions and 72% of vineyards and 82% of wineries prioritising energy efficient practices.
  • Water: 87% of vineyards and 79% of wineries have taken action to plan, monitor and reduce water use to maximise water efficiency.
  • Waste: 72% of vineyards and 89% of wineries have diverted waste from landfill and identified recycling and reuse options, furthering the Sustainable Winegrowing Australia’s commitment to the wine sector’s zero waste by 2050 target.
  • People & Business: 80% of vineyards and 93% of wineries engage in at least one community or environmental initiative building better connections between wine producers and their communities to further strengthen the sector for future generations.

The report also presents two areas for greater improvement across:

  • efforts to preserve natural resources and protect precious Australian ecosystems with 58% of members dedicating land to biodiversity enhancement, and
  • 46% of vineyards using best practice soil and nutrient management.

“The Sustainable Winegrowing Australia program is on a mission for continuous improvement and provides a clear pathway to certification,” Battaglene said.

“We are thrilled to see the success achieved by current members, while noting there is always room for future growth and innovation across all the program’s areas of focus.

“The report showcases the commitment and impact of producers taking action and operating at best practice, as well as the opportunities available for improving sustainability practices.

“The report confirms that through Sustainable Winegrowing Australia the Australian grape and wine community can gain traction faster on key elements of sustainability practice and management – such as energy, water, land, soil, biodiversity and waste – and bring economic benefits not just to individual players, but to the sector as a whole and surrounding communities.”

Find out more about Sustainable Winegrowing Australia and download the report HERE. 


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