In this episode we become acquainted with Fetzer, a vineyard so entrenched in stewardship of the planet it has been coined “The Earth-friendly Vineyard”. Founded in 1968 Fetzer has always been a pioneer in the field…literally! In 1978 they were the first California vintner to introduce a line of white wines at a time when whites were not so popular and in 1984 made the commitment to convert to utilizing only sustainable practices.
Fetzer has become a model as a sustainable grower for the entire industry and readily shares their methods and philosophy. It all starts with the soil. Every gardener can take away something from their practice of composting all left over materials from the wine making process to the way they utilize cover crops or manage water for healthier vines and richer, more flavorful wines. The grapes grown fully sustainably are featured in their Bonterra line of wines. However not wanting to mislead anyone Fetzer does utilize grapes from other vineyards that may or may not be sustainably grown.
From their fields to their warehouse and offices, everything is designed to take as much pressure off the environment as possible. They have been able to reduce their landfill contributions by 96% since 1990 by composting, recycling and reducing their dependence on the power grid. They have reduced their water consumption by 24% and continue to find ways to reduce their carbon footprint.
One such practice is the use of cover crops to nurture the soil, ensure biodiversity and mitigate runoff. Patti gives viewers a glimpse of the cover crops in use at Serenbe Farms just south of Atlanta and why they are important.
And of course Nathan prepares a delicious meal using, you guessed it, wine! Watch his cooking segment again and access the recipe by clicking on What’s Cooking with Nathan on the home page.
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