This month, we offer you a larger and more complex topic: the different types of cultures. We zoomed in on three types of "organic" crops that grow day after day: organic farming, biodynamics and nature.
Are you curious to know more about these topics? You've come to the right place!
You should know that there are several ways to cultivate the vine and make wine.
We are talking about conventional, reasoned, organic, biodynamic and natural agriculture.
But what differentiates all these types of culture?
Well, quite simply, their philosophy and their positioning as to their relationship to the tools and substances used.
Let's start by addressing the BIO:
It is explained by a more natural search for balance. Winegrowers are trying to promote soil life in a more coherent ecosystem. They use products like sulfur and copper in limited quantities. The entire process of making wine will limit inputs to promote the expression of the terroir.
Some labels in Organic Agriculture:
The European label that we all know, with its AB logo or the one with a sheet made of white stars on a green background. This label is issued after 3 years of conversion by a certifying body approved by the State, including Ecocert.
The organic coherence mark is a private label and can only be awarded if the domain already has official certification. It is more restrictive than the European Label.
BIODYNAMICS now :
Biodynamics, in addition to being organic, is the desire to best represent the terroir. Winegrowers consider the vine in a global environment. They seek to strengthen its exchanges with its sources of energy: the earth and the sky. Biodynamicists are in perpetual search for harmony, respect for the living, the balance of the soil, the vitality of the plant. They make natural preparations that they use in order to revitalize the soil and leaves. Finally, they will also base themselves on a lunar calendar in order to exercise their practices according to lunar and cosmic influences. The specifications of a biodynamic wine are much stricter than those of "organic" wines.
Some labels in Biodynamics:
Demeter is the main certification of biodynamic agriculture. To access it, the estates must already be controlled by Ecocert and certified by the European organic label. Its specifications are stricter than those of the European organic label (in addition to imposing biodynamic agriculture).
Biodyvin is the brand of the International Union of Winegrowers in Bio-Dynamic Culture. Applications are studied very seriously and there is great cohesion between all members. They are checked every year by Ecocert. Here, organic certification is not mandatory but the domains must justify at least two years of conversion.
Finally, NATURES wines:
The idea here is to reject any synthetic chemicals and add inputs. Preserve the grapes and therefore the wine. Basically, it would be making wine only with grapes. The winegrowers show absolute rigor, they are attentive to the quality of the harvest and the hygiene of the cellar. Only the addition of sulphite (or not) is tolerated, sparingly!
Natures wine associations:
The AVN (Association of Natural Wines). To join this association, you must have at least one organic certification. It has very precise specifications, and the wines must be made from grapes in organic or biodynamic farming, and vinified and bottled without any input! If you want to be able to stick the AVN stamp on your bottle, you have to completely do without sulphites!
Wines S.A.I.N.S for No Inputs Or Sulphite. This small association is very strict: no synthetic chemistry in the vines, no additives in the tanks, no added sulphite.
…What about sulphites, in all this?
Wine naturally makes sulphites, hence the mandatory statement "contains sulphites" on the bottles. It should therefore not be believed that an organic or biodynamic wine does not contain sulphites. On the other hand, it is true that winegrowers will try to limit their addition. Even some Natures wines contain sulphites! The real question would be: what dose of sulphites in wine? If it were indicated on the label, it would be a way for producers to be more "transparent" with their consumers!
See you soon for new news!
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