Consumer interest in the environment and health is behind the decision by two wine makers to break with long-held traditions in packaging.
Bonny Doon Vineyard of Santa Cruz, Calif., has introduced a wine ingredients label, believed to be a first in the country. One part of the label shows the basic ingredients. The second part reveals ingredients used during production.
In 1987, the federal government began requiring wine makers to make sulfite declarations. But that is the only labeling requirement other than alcohol content.
Two years ago, Bonny Doon downsized to focus on making biodynamic organic wines.
“We make high-quality wine, and the proof is in the ingredients,” said Burke Owens, marketing and communications director for Bonny Doon, explaining the rationale behind the initiative.
Another winery, Boho Vineyards of San Francisco, has converted its wine packaging from heavyweight glass bottles to lighter wine casks, resulting in a 55% reduction in its carbon footprint and an 85% reduction in landfill waste. The new 3-liter boxes are made from recycled paper and use only soy-based ink.
“We use exactly the same artisan handcrafted wine-making techniques that we used on our bottled wines in the past,” said wine maker Adam Richardson.