Chateau Guiraud

First up this week, I wanted to congratulate Chateau Guiraud, Premier Grand Cru Classé Sauternes in achieving full organic certification. This is fantastic to have one of the best French and Bordeaux wine labels helping to set the trend in Organic viticulture. Due to the extraordinary attention to detail and manual work required in the vineyard, organic viticulture is a natural next step for a Sauternes. But somebody has to lead so well done Ch. Guiraud. Three years of conversion under full organic viticulture is required before one can apply for certification. In twenty years from now, organic viticulture and wine making will be the norm, but right now we are breaking new ground together. It is nice to be in good company for our Organic conversion and journey.

 
It is still a frequent misconception that Sustainability is advanced “Green” environmental thinking. It’s not that simple! The easiest tagline to understand for Sustainability is probably: “Planet People Profit”. And all three have to be there together to make it work! It was therefore interesting to read the recent article in the March edition of La Revue du Vin de France (RVF), France’s leading wine magazine talking about the dimensions of the French wine industry and the lack of attention from its Government in that industry.
 

Emirates A380 in flight

In the Bordeaux region, wine and viticulture is just accepted as another business and industry. Its size and importance goes unnoticed. For instance, the wine output from the Bordeaux Appellation (Gironde Department) alone is equivalent to two thirds of the whole of the Australian wine industry! Australia is a significantly larger country than France, even though a large part of its land mass is very unsuitable for agricultural use. The RVF’s analysis shows that up to 800,000 people are directly and indirectly employed in the French wine industry, starting with the producers, employees, suppliers and following right through the chain as far as wine merchants, distribution, customs personnel and tourism. The value of France’s exports (to which we have just started to contribute!) is estimated to be € 9 Billion (A$ 11.5 Bn!) and second only in France to their Aerospace business. € 9 B buys about 162 baby Airbus (A320s) aeroplanes or 40 A-380’s!! That’s huge. And that’s before you throw in the value of 12 million wine tourists every year that visit French vineyards and beautiful towns such as Saint-Emilion! Don’t forget also the role that wine plays in maintaining the rural way of life that we all love.

And for this to all work, those three factors have to work – Planet People Profit. Our industry is big, it looks after a lot of people. But we must also take care of our planet – congratulations again Ch. Guiraud, we are right behind you!

We hope in a couple of weeks to bring you a Sustainability update from one of Australia’s foremost experts. In the meantime to follow our news throughout the week, click this link to our Facebook page here and hit the like button. Have a great week.