Just like when a recently turned vegan finds out not all wines are cruelty-free, those of us trying to live the green life are often a bit baffled when it comes to finding the most sustainable and ethically produced booze in Australia.
While most small, boutique alcohol brands producing small batches won’t be doing too much harm to the environment, these sustainable alcohol brands are going above and beyond to reduce their carbon footprint.
Australia’s first organic gin also happens to be Australia’s first carbon neutral gin, and that’s something we can drink to. The team at Antipodes only works with like-minded suppliers so you can be sure the Tasmanian pepperberry and lemon myrtle you can taste are sourced sustainably. If gin’s not your thing, Antipodes also makes vodka and an espresso liqueur that will get you going.
Rockie Ridge Brewing Co
Growing and brewing everything in their beers on site means Rocky Ridge can do things a bit differently. What they can’t grow on their fifth-generation family farm, they source as locally as possible to reduce their carbon footprint and ensure their beers are as fresh as can be. The farm is run using organic and eco-friendly principals, they collect their own rainwater and they only package their brews in cans – which are lighter to transport, easier to recycle and better for the beer.
Stone & Wood
A B-Corp certified company, Stone & Wood is going a cut above the rest to reduce their environmental impact while brewing some of Australia’s best beer. They have implemented programs for sustainability and community – Green Feet and Ingrained, respectively. Green Feet focuses on water, energy and waste reduction and has seen them turn to solar energy and implement reusable cups at their events, among plenty of other initiatives. Through Ingrained, Stone & Wood donates $1 per 100L of beer as well as hold events – one which raised in excess of $30,000 which was all donated to local charities.
If you’re a fan of the funky taste of natural wines, you’re in luck. The entire premise behind natural wine is minimal human intervention and that usually translates into a sustainable process. There are too many amazing brands to list them all here, so head to your local natural wine store or bar and have a chat to the owner – they’re always full bottle (no pun intended) on the production methods of the labels they stock.
Howard Park Wines
A leader in the sustainable wine industry, Howard Park Wines has a few methods to ensure sustainable wine production on their vineyard. They use organic and biodynamic principles which ensure optimal soil health; which means less intervention is needed. They have a closed loop compositing system, where a waste created is returned to the soil to improve the health of the vines. They use rainwater in the production of their wines and then irrigate the trees on their property with the wastewater.
Set in the Adelaide Hills, Henschke is another winery using organic and biodynamic principles to grow their grapes. They use an environmental management system to guide decisions that could impact the environment and they review their environmental action plan each year to ensure they’re doing everything they can. Instead of using pesticides, Henschke plants native plants at the end of each vineyard row to keep insects and disease at bay. The company is also a signatory to the Australian Packaging Convent which means all their packaging is recyclable or reusable too.
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