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Earth Day April 22nd

Earth Day April 22nd

Earth Day, observed annually on April 22nd, marks a global celebration of environmental protection and awareness. Its inception was sparked by the environmental movement of the 1960s, a period marked by growing concern over pollution, conservation of natural resources, and the impacts of human activity on the planet. The idea for Earth Day was conceived by Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin, who sought to harness the energy of the student anti-war movement to bring attention to environmental issues.

The first Earth Day was held in the United States on April 22, 1970, and it mobilized millions of people across the country, leading to the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the passage of landmark environmental legislation such as the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act which have all had positive impacts on the countries environment. Since then, Earth Day has evolved into a global event involving over 190 countries, with various activities such as tree plantings, beach clean-ups, educational events, and advocacy campaigns.

At its core, Earth Day aims to promote environmental sustainability, raise awareness about pressing environmental issues, and encourage individuals, communities, businesses, and governments to take action to protect the planet and its natural resources. Key focuses of Earth Day include climate change mitigation, conservation of biodiversity, promotion of renewable energy, waste reduction, and sustainable agriculture practices, this is where the wine industry comes into play.

The wine industry naturally intersects with the aims of Earth Day in several significant ways. Firstly, wine production is inherently tied to agriculture, relying on healthy ecosystems and fertile soil to cultivate grapes. Already there are many exciting and innovative ways wine producers and growers have put in place to promote healthy practices. Sustainable viticulture, such as organic and biodynamic farming, aim to minimize environmental impacts by reducing chemical inputs, conserving water, and promoting soil health and biodiversity. By adopting these practices, wineries can help preserve ecosystems, protect water quality, and mitigate climate change.

Below are just a small fraction of the many wines out there that do their best to promote sustainability and work in line with their natural ecosystems, while still making top tier wine that we are proud to have on our shelves. 



Filipa Pato Blanc de Blancs 3B NV

Filipa Pato and husband, William Wouters have created an expressive range of wines representing the native grape varietals of theBarriada region. Their philosophy is simple: "create authentic wines without make-up to express the true nature of the vineyards they come from". They focus on indigenous grapes only. Baga, Bical, Arinto, Cercial and Maria Gomes to create soulful wines from vineyard sites with soils, microclimates, and other aspects, ideal for growing exquisite wine grapes with biodynamanic viticultural practices that work in harmony with the natural ecosystem and give back to the soil. In the winery, they gently handle the grapes, with minimal intervention and strict monitoring of the wine, allowing them to express themselves fully. Ultimately they create "terroir" wines by uniting knowledge, art and nature to produce each wine with its own character. A blend of native varietals: Bical, Cercial and Maria Gomes. This sparkling wine spends 9 months in bottle before release. Flavours of apples and soft ripe citrus fruit and delicate orange blossom culminate in a clean and crisp wine with rounded honeyed notes as the wine develops in the glass.



Avignonesi Da Di Bianco 2022 Toscana IGT

Born from Avignonesi's innate desire to experiment and explore, the Da Di Bianco is a truly unique blend of indigenous varieties. Using the native grapes; Orpicchio, Vermentino, Grechetto and Trebbiano they have created a harmonious wine with a distinct and fresh personality. The nose is elegant with delicate notes of pineapple, white peach, elderflower and white flowers. Notes of lime and wildflower honey emerge on the palate. The marked acidity makes it long and elegant. The finish is savoury and persistent. Their mission as winemakers is to assume leadership in the context of the "good wine industry". An ecosystem built on organic and biodynamic agriculture, sustainable distribution systems and consumer education. Their strong belief in organic products meant introducing sustainable farming methods, by way of biodynamic viticulture, which has made Avignonesi today the largest biodynamic winery in Italy. Also if white is not your thing we also have their beautiful red variety.



Stopham Estate Pinot Gris 2022

One of our local heroes, Stopham have an incredible range that are we are proud to stock a bunch of. Being fortunate to work within an area of such unprecedented natural beauty in the South Downs National Park, because of these surroundings, they have the ever-present reminder of the importance of respecting and nurturing where they are. Not just from an ethical perspective, but also to maintain a natural ecosystem that is best for their vines and the wine it produces. Stopham Vineyard employs various sustainable practices to, manage soil health, minimize pesticide use, enhance biodiversity, conserve water resources, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and manage waste. Techniques such as maintaining grass cover, using organic manure and careful fertilizer application, and promoting biodiversity through hedgerows and tree planting contribute to environmental stewardship. With minimal water usage and energy-efficient winery operations, the vineyard strives for sustainability while supporting local employment and reducing its carbon footprint. Waste is managed through on-site recycling, and containers are appropriately disposed of. Additionally, sourcing bottles locally helps reduce transportation emissions. 

Just one of the bottles we stock is the fantastic 2022 Pinot Gris - recognised as one of the best white wine examples in England, consistently winning the best still white award at the independent English wines awards (IEWA) competition. Off-dry with aromatic peach and pear fruit alongside the tropical fruit character on the nose. On the palate, this has excellent balance with crisp acidity. It is fairly full in body, with plenty of juicy fruit intensity, but is refreshing and long, with a lively citrus and stone fruit finish. Excellent with spicy dishes, roast pork or as an aperitif. Check out the full range here



Bodegas Aroa le Naturel Tinto 2022

Aroa la Natural is an excellent value Spanish red, which happens to be a completely natural wine, and even says so on the label! Aroa is one of just a handful wineries in Spain, and the only one in Navarra, to have received the Wineries for Climate Protection certificate. Awarded by the Spanish Wine Federation, it recognizes continuous improvement on four fronts: reduction of emissions, water management, waste reduction and energy efficiency. At the winery, 100% of our energy consumption comes from renewable sources, in the vineyard they practice free and natural agriculture, using plant cover, plant-based treatments and organic input from harvest and pruning residues. In this way they maintain the biodiversity of the soil and the environment, avoiding any synthetic chemical compound. The dominant grape is Garnacha, a staple in many blended red Spanish wines. It is topped up with a field blend of many varieties in tiny quantities. The wine has a short maceration, and minimal intervention, with very low sulphur levels. This is all about preserving the fresh fruit flavours, and bottling early. It's a delicious very moreish wine, full of bright, soft red fruits, with gentle tannins. This would be great with a paella, or just as easily enjoyed on its own. 



Tim Martin Wines, 'Bear' Tinta Barocca 2015

Tim tends to vineyards situated in the Swartland and Paarl. Particularly noteworthy is Mothership, a plot he personally cultivates, adhering to biodynamic and Fukuoka methodologies, with plans for transitioning to fully biodynamic agriculture underway. Qaisar operates under organic farming practices, while Chad hails from a conventional vineyard. The vines are sustainably farmed, remaining unirrigated and trained in a 'trellised bush-trained' fashion—a distinctive South African approach where bush vines are supported by two wires to maintain their bush structure. Embracing a philosophy of minimal intervention, Tim crafts his wines in a meticulously maintained cellar located in Cape Town, employing traditional techniques such as basket pressing and spontaneous fermentations within large oak vats ranging from 500 to 2000 litres.

Made from 100% Tinta Barroca, a grape that's native to Portugal but is found in a few small plots around the Western Cape, it is created in a Burgundian and Beaujolais style, but using a robust dark fruited grape makes this something very different. The nose is intense, offering floral and spicy aromas with brooding black fruit. These flavours carry through onto the palate with firm but fine tannins. Drinking beautifully now but will age well.



Botanica ‘Flower Girl’ Vermouth NV

One of our favourite producers Ginny Povall is a pioneer in sustainable winemaking and her wines are absolutely incredible, we also love her Vermouth made from Viognier which is a perfect accompaniment to your favourite cocktail or with some fantastic tonic water. Botanica Wines was established in 2009 at Protea Heights Farm, in South Africa's iconic Stellenbosch region. Their mission lies with the principles of regenerative agriculture. This innovative form of organic farming represents the future, working to amplify soil fertility, cultivate biodiversity, bolster the soil's water retention capacity, and enrich the overall ecosystem. At the core of this agroecological philosophy is the practice of no-till farming. By capturing carbon within both the soil and the aboveground biomass, this approach actively counteracts the current trend of atmospheric carbon build up, thus playing a pivotal role in mitigating climate change. It also delivers a range of benefits including heightened crop yields, diminished susceptibility to diseases, increased resilience against droughts and climatic fluctuations, along with improved vitality and health for the soil.

Earth Day serves as an opportunity for the wine industry to showcase its commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship. Many wineries participate in Earth Day events by organizing vineyard clean-ups, planting native vegetation to enhance biodiversity, implementing energy-efficient practices in winemaking facilities, and educating consumers about the environmental benefits of sustainable wine production. By promoting eco-friendly initiatives, the wine industry can engage consumers in efforts to support environmental conservation and foster a greater appreciation for the connection between wine and the natural world. All of this is a powerful reminder of the importance of environmental protection and sustainable development. Through its focus on raising awareness, mobilizing action, and promoting sustainability, Earth Day provides an opportunity for the wine industry to demonstrate its commitment to environmental stewardship and contribute to the preservation of the planet for future generations. Something we are proud to be a part of and encourage you all to take part with us.

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