Wineries Factoring Environment Into Packaging

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In a 2008 poll of 150 wineries, over 50 percent declared that using environmentally-friendly packaging was a factor in their decision process of how to bottle wine.

The purpose of the study was to determine why wineries choose to use a certain type of packaging. While over 99 percent of wine is packaged in clear glass or green glass bottles, other options include PET plastic, aluminum and the famous “box of wine” in a mylar bag.

A 100% recyclable material with only a national recycling rate of 24% in 2007, glass is an eco-friendly material that deserves another go-around in the manufacturing process.

A 100% recyclable material with only a national recycling rate of 24% in 2007, glass is an eco-friendly material that deserves another go-around in the manufacturing process.

When the different packaging was rated on a 10-point scale, glass bottles scored over five points better on characteristics including “aesthetics of the packaging” and “ability to maintain flavor.”

The study was commissioned by Owens-Illinois, the largest manufacturer of glass containers in the world.

Trends in Wine Packaging

While there was no mention of what “environmentally-friendly” packaging meant to those wineries polled, here’s what some wineries have done to benefit the environment:

  • Fetzer reduced the thickness of its wine bottles to use 16 percent less glass
  • Several California wineries have installed solar panels to utilize renewable energy
  • Willamette Valley Vineyards in Oregon offers 10 cents for each bottle brought in for recycling, regardless of the original producer
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Trey Granger

Trey Granger

Trey Granger is a former senior waste stream analyst for Earth911.
Trey Granger

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