A serious commitment. 100s of impactful practices.

From the Soil all of the way to the Bottle.

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sustainable 

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The Six Pillars of Sustainable Winegrowing Leadership

Confused about sustainability? Think it’s just a buzzword?

Any leading sustainable winegrowing certification is addressing ALL SIX of these pillars. Sustainability involves thinking systematically, integrating resource efficiency, green purchasing, climate action, and social equity into all aspects of day-to-day business.

Serious sustainability extends from the vineyard into the winery, with a top-down leadership commitment. Time and again these dedicated businesses prove that caring for nature and community elevates quality and experience.

Energy Efficiency
SUSTAINABILITY LEADERSHIP PILLAR:

ENERGY SAVINGS & EFFICIENCY

Our shift in mindset to stewardship and sustainability started in the 1980s, when my grandfather realized the toxicity of a vineyard spray and decided to go organic. In 2007, we were one of the first wineries to install a solar array. Here we are 15 years later and the sun still provides 70% of our electricity. But as Napa Green reminds us, we don’t want to “solarize inefficiencies.” We’re always trying to maximize energy efficiency so we reduce those monthly utility bills. All of our lighting is now LED, we use night-air to cool the cellar, and all of our motors have VFDs, which phase operation based on demand. We’ve reduced deliveries by generating our own nitrogen onsite and nixing bottled water. We have seven electric vehicle chargers, with four family and three employee EVs. If you’re a company with a long-term view it makes sense to keep doing more.

 
- Brandon deLeuze, Winemaker, ZD Wines
Waste Prevention
SUSTAINABILITY LEADERSHIP PILLAR:

WASTE PREVENTION & GREEN PURCHASING

Our whole team is deeply committed to leading by example. We are certified organic & biodynamic, Napa Green Winery & Vineyard, B Corp, and most recently we became the first TRUE Zero Waste Gold-certified estate winery in Napa County. We reuse, recycle or compost 95% of our “waste” - only 5% goes to landfill. Our industry doesn’t talk much about waste, but on average, 30-50% of winery emissions come from packaging and distribution. That’s why we consider the full supply chain. We have shifted towards recycled content and recycle-friendly packaging. We are decreasing the weight of our Cabernet Sauvignon bottles by 30%. This reduces material use, glass cost, shipment weight, emissions, and post-consumer waste. Did you know that only 30% of glass is recycled? Glass is infinitely recyclable - we just have to build awareness. We are facing a climate crisis, and Spottswoode is taking bold steps to prove that environmental and social leadership are compatible with the highest quality and contribute to a resilient business.

 
- BETH NOVAK MILLIKEN, President & CEO, Spottswoode Winery
Water Savings
SUSTAINABILITY LEADERSHIP PILLAR:

WATER SAVINGS & EFFICIENCY

Dry farming does not mean you simply turn off the faucet. It requires strategic and long-term thinking about where you plant, row orientation, vine density, training the vines early to root deep, hand-cutting superficial roots, and skillful pruning. Shifting an established vineyard to dry farming isn’t easy. But think, just one irrigation of our 100-acre estate would use one million gallons of water. We aren’t just conserving this resource, but building soil health and vine resilience. Does care and stewardship translate into wine quality? I think so. And what about social sustainability? The average tenure of our vineyard crew is 20 years. I’ve been at Dominus Estate 15 years and I’m one of the newest to the team. I am proud of our being selected as Wine Spectator’s #1 Wine of the Year, but there is so much more to do. Last year we achieved organic certification. This spring we will be among the first five Napa Green Certified Vineyards. And I’ve committed to be a mentor and support growers who want to dry farm their vineyards.

 
- TOD MOSTERO, Director of Viticulture and Winemaking, Dominus Estate
social equity
SUSTAINABILITY LEADERSHIP PILLAR:

SOCIAL EQUITY, JUSTICE & INCLUSION

We have two women leading an all-Latino winemaking team. Our small cellar team of six has all been here 15 plus years, with a 50:50 split of women to men. At least once a year we visit another winery that is a leader in sustainability. This helps keep everyone engaged and thinking about both low-hanging fruit and long-term dreams for saving water and energy, reducing emissions, and building resilience. Laura Orozco, our Assistant Winemaker, is bullish about recycling and composting and keeping the team trained. We focus on development and opportunities for advancement, and have a budget for education to support professional and personal growth. Edgar Lona joined as a cellar intern in 1997, and is now the Cellar Master & Facility Supervisor. We are working with The Roots Fund to hire interns for harvest to broaden and diversify our talent pool. We also try to be generous with work-life balance, especially with the home-schooling challenges during COVID. Napa Green has broadened our perspective of what sustainability really means – it is so much more than how we grow our grapes. Diversity and social inclusion are a part of our fabric, essential to sustain our business and make us better.

 
- Elizabeth Vianna, Winemaker & General Manager, Chimney Rock Winery
pesticide reduction
SUSTAINABILITY LEADERSHIP PILLAR:

INTEGRATED PEST MANAGEMENT & PESTICIDE PHASEOUT

In the 1980’s, when we were reviving the Inglenook estate, we committed to organic farming practices. In 1994 we were among the first growers in the Napa Valley to have our estate vineyards certified organic. Our vineyard team is focused on the ecological stability of the whole farm system, with long-term practices that build soil and vine health, which buffers against pests, disease, drought and other extreme conditions. Our Vineyard Supervisor, Francisco Ortega, has been with us since 1984, and most of the crew has been here for a decade or more. They’ve watched everything grow, they understand particular issues in each area, and they cultivate natural defenses. This includes welcoming natural predators – releasing beneficial mites, installing bluebird, bat and owl boxes. Our Director of Vineyard & Cellar Operations, Enrique Herrero, feels that the careful attention and vigilance in the vineyard, with each vine visited 10 times a year, also means we quickly catch and address problems that could affect the quality of the grapes. As I see it, there are no good reasons not to farm organically. Nature supports us when we support her.

 
- Eleanor Coppola, Proprietor, Inglenook
Climate Action
SUSTAINABILITY LEADERSHIP PILLAR:

CLIMATE ACTION & REGENERATIVE FARMING

In the 2020 Glass Fire, we lost almost everything. We have a choice: to adapt and learn proactively or be forced to change by tragedy. We also have to ask ourselves if we are prepared for our vineyard to burn again. We have 100% cover crop and the dry grass may have been a factor in our loss. But we won't stop farming organically or remove cover crop, because nurturing the health of our soils is the highest priority. In some ways this is an opportunity. We will be planting new varieties better suited to high heat and drought. Ultimately, probably 50% of the vineyard will be more climate resilient varieties. Water has always been limited for us, so in replanting we are installing double drip lines for even more targeted irrigation. Each one of our full-time crew, most with 10+ years of tenure, has a dedicated area to manage. Any vines that are here today, and will be here tomorrow, are because of the team – their tenacity and dedication, their love and connectedness. We have to have faith that this place will ultimately prevail.

 
- Ashley Anderson-Bennett, Vineyard Manager, Cain Vineyard & Winery

EASY
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Become a Certified Sustainable Wine Industry Leader

The Napa Green nonprofit is setting the bar for sustainability and climate action leadership in the wine industry. Join over 100 Napa Green champions who exemplify that caring for nature & community elevates quality & experience.

Climate-Action

87

Certified wineries

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15M

Certified
cases

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47

transitioning vineyards

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13K

land
acres

16

Become napa green Winery certified

Making an exceptional wine requires stewardship and attention to detail. The same is true of achieving Napa Green Winery certification. Napa Green Certified Wineries implement more than 120 sustainability standards to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and the winery's carbon footprint, care for employees, build engagement around sustainability and be good neighbors.

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Become napa green vineyard certified

The new Napa Green Vineyard program is the first sustainable winegrowing certification to focus specifically on climate action, regenerative farming, and social equity, justice and inclusion. Napa Green Vineyard certification provides a pathway for growers to improve soil health, become carbon neutral to negative within six to nine years, and increase the resilience of vineyards, businesses, and our community.

SERIOUSLY?! 12,000 NATURAL CORKS OFFSET AS MUCH CO2 AS 83 SOLAR PANELS

Our sponsor:

100PercentCork.org

Cork is an endlessly regenerating resource. Because of the value of cork and the time between harvests of cork tree bark (nine years) cork farmers are mindful stewards. Cork forest ecosystems also have incredible biodiversity – recognized by the World Wildlife Fund as one of the world’s 36 biodiversity hotspots! What may be surprising is just how much carbon cork sequesters. Even taking into account manufacturing and distribution wine corks still have a negative carbon balance of 276 g CO2e per cork. And cork can be recycled, bringing it full circle. When you consider all aspects of sustainability, from environmental stewardship to social equity and caring for community to climate action, natural cork is the most sustainable wine closure.