Australian wine industry asked to clean up their trade

Sunday, 27 May, 2007


A report recently published in the UK has found that the Australian wine industry could significantly reduce their CO2 emissions by bulk exporting of wine, instead of shipping it in bottles.

The report from the UK's Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP) is titled Bottling Wine in a Changing Climate. It illustrates where reductions in the wine trade's transport and packaging carbon footprint can be made, specifically focusing on wine from the Berri Estate in Australia and the Bordeaux region in France.

The report demonstrates areas where savings can be made through the use of bulk containers or bottling at source, lighter glass bottles and alternative methods of transport.

It reveals that significant reductions in CO2 emissions from the transportation of wine can be achieved by converting wine from shipping in bottles to bulk exportation. This can reduce emissions by 30 to 40%. Lighter glass bottles can also achieve reductions of up to 30%.

Even greater reductions are possible if the two strategies are combined.

"This report is important because it allows importers to make informed decisions about cutting their emissions," said Andy Dawe, WRAP's glass technology manager.

By analysing the different transport and packaging options available, the study has established benchmark figures that can help importers reduce their carbon footprint.

"By encouraging the industry to bulk import wine and bottle it here in the UK, we can reduce the amount of green glass entering our recycling systems and also increase the use of lighter weight bottles, which use less raw material and are better for the environment," Dawe said.

"As well as cutting glass waste, this approach also improves the industry's carbon emissions profile, and saves money by reducing transport and energy costs."

The study was made available at the London International Wine & Spirits Fair (LIWSF) held earlier this week.

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