The Top 10 Most Sustainable U.S. Wineries

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An "organic" label is one way to judge wine sustainability, but the life cycle impact of a bottle of red goes beyond that. Greenopia, a provider of independent green product ratings, released a comprehensive list of major wineries ranked in order of sustainability today, taking into account factors like growing practices, transportation, building logistics, and wine packaging.

greenopia logoUnsurprisingly, a certified organic winery--Alma Rosa--tied for first place. In addition to holding off on synthetic pesticides and fertilizer, the vineyard is one of the only premium wineries to use the same bottle design for all if its wines, thus cutting down on waste in bottle production. Alma Rosa's winery also features green building design techniques along with local, sustainable materials.

Non-organic, discount brands also topped the Greenopia list. Kendall Jackson is credited with practicing water conservation, using solar power, and putting recycled materials in its labels. And everyone's favorite boxed wine, Franzia, received kudos for its eco-friendly box design that keeps wine fresher for longer than bottles. But most of the highly ranked wines, including French Rabbit, Frog's Leap, and Demetria, aren't made for the alcohol-swilling college set.

Here's the full top 10 list:

1. Alma Rosa (3 out of 4 leaves)

2. French Rabbit (3 out of 4 leaves)

3. Frog's Leap (3 out of 4 leaves)

4. Benzinger (2 out of 4 leaves)

5. Demetria (2 out of 4 leaves)

6. Franzia (2 out of 4 leaves)

7. Grgich Hills (2 out of 4 leaves)

8. Bonny Doon (1 out of 4 leaves)

9. Cakebread (1 out of 4 leaves)

10. Kendall Jackson (1 out of 4 leaves)

[Greenopia]

[Photo:Mary-Louise Price]

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2 Comments

  • K. Ford

    What are your sources for this list? This article definitely did not have enough information for me to ensure the credibility of this list.

  • Mike Winery

    Ariel Schwartz,

    Though I admire your attempt to report the top 10 most sustainable US wineries, it appears that Greenopia has gotten their facts mixed up. How are corporations like KJ and Bonny Doon on the list when they have muliple winery facilities that are far from "sustainable"? I can understand listing single facility / estate vineyard type organizations like Benzinger, and Cakebread but it seems like Greenopia has left you far astray from truly sustainable wineries. After all, where do you think Richard Sanford makes his wines for Alma Rosa? Santa Rita Hills? You are sorely mistaken (try looking up a custom crush facility in San Luis Obispo).

    Please respect American wine consumers and the industry by properly researching before posting your findings.