Champagne Telmont announced the launch of a pioneering experiment to reduce the weight of its glass bottles, working in close collaboration with the French glassmaker Verallia.
The goal is ultimately to decrease the current weight of 835 grams to an even lighter bottle, weighing 800 grams.
The glass used for its bottles is one of the main sources of Champagne Telmont’s carbon emissions – around 20 per cent.
Therefore, shaving weight off its bottles could substantially reduce its carbon footprint: less glass means less CO2 in the melting and manufacturing of glass, and also less fuel for transport, both upstream and downstream. This means extra energy savings and environmental benefits.
The appearance and shape of the bottle will change very little; the only real difference will be its weight.
This modification requires an upstream test phase to guarantee bottle resistance during the champagne bottling process and transport.
In fact, due to the specific characteristics of champagne, these bottles must withstand much higher pressure than others: about 6 kilograms per square centimetre. The lighter-weight bottles therefore need to be tested to withstand this pressure over time with 35 grams less glass weight.
This test phase began at the Telmont estate on a batch of 3000 bottles during the tirage, or stage when the wine is bottled and a second fermentation takes place, specific to the champagne-making process.
Over a six-month period, a representative sample will be continuously monitored and analysed, and the results communicated on a regular basis. These lighter bottles will be approved for sale once they have successfully passed each step of the test, including ageing time in the cellar.
If the outcome is conclusive, Telmont will market the first 800-gram bottles of ‘Telmont Réserve Brut’ (aged a minimum of 3 years) from 2025 – an initiative that could potentially benefit the Champagne region to help collectively reduce its carbon footprint.
The House is very enthusiastic about this experiment and is the last in a series of initiatives taken by Champagne Telmont since June 2021 as part of its ‘In the Name of Mother Nature’ project.
The project looks to eliminate all packaging and gift boxes based on the principle of “the bottle, and nothing but the bottle”, replacing all transparent bottles (made with 0% recycled glass) with classic green champagne bottles (made with 85% recycled glass).
Overhauling the logistics chain upstream and downstream to limit greenhouse gas emissions indirectly related to its business, selecting transporters according to their CSR score, using 100% green energy, continuing to enforce its zero-air transport policy for supply and distribution, converting the estate to 100% organic viticulture by 2031.
President of Telmont House Ludovic du Plessis said Telmont strongly believes that its wine will be good if the earth is true.
The House does everything it can to produce the highest quality champagne, while showing nature the utmost respect.
“Telmont is a traditional house that embraces innovation, especially when it enables us to reduce our carbon footprint,” du Plessis said.
“We want to thank our partner in this experiment, Verallia, who also shares these values. I sincerely hope that what we are testing today, with this lighter 800-gram bottle, will be a step forward for the Champagne region.”
“The Champagne bottle is a symbol. But that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t evolve, stepping up to meet today’s challenges,” said Verallia France sales and marketing director Axel Guilloteau.
“In line with our purpose “Re-imagining glass for a sustainable future”, we work closely with our clients, supporting their efforts to reduce environmental impact.
“Shaving weight off bottles is a strategic focus of this approach. Therefore, we are thrilled to partner up with Champagne Telmont who is offering us a remarkable life-size testing ground.”
Are you a Daily Wine News subscriber? If not, click here to join our mailing list. It’s free!