Stewardship. Integrity. Collaboration.
Since its founding in 1991, Crimson Wine Group has held sustainability as one of our core values—it’s the right thing to do, and we know that these efforts result in higher quality wines and the preservation of our estate vineyards for future generations. We are committed to sustainable farming and winemaking and are continuously cultivating and expanding these practices. Our multidisciplinary Green Team meets regularly to monitor and improve our practices and to implement the latest sustainable practices, ensuring long-term viability of our business and quality of life in our community. In addition, we are members of the Porto Protocol, which is a commitment to work towards minimizing the impacts of climate change.
We believe in creating wines that express their natural origin and that will be complex and elegant for years to come. Most of our wines' sulfite levels fall within biodynamic wine standards, which is 100 ppm or less, while the typical standard for conventional wines is 350 ppm or less.
Crimson Wine Group pays close attention to how our employees are treated. We offer quality healthcare, continuing education, and competitive wages, and provide safety training so workers are prepared in the case of an unexpected accident.
As we think about social responsibility we consider the entire scope of our business. Every aspect of our operation can make a difference and therefore we engage all of our stakeholders: viticulture, winemaking, packaging, employees, sales, marketing and our communities. The infographic below summarizes our areas of focus and the interdependency of these efforts.
At Pine Ridge Vineyards, we are committed to being responsible stewards of the land, now and for the future. We are proud that our winery is a Napa Green Certified Winery. All of our estate vineyards are Napa Green Certified Land, with a fully customized conservation program for each site to encourage and protect biodiversity. Our vineyards are also Certified Sustainable through the California Certified Sustainable Winegrowing organization. We are focused on reducing excessive and harmful inputs and on developing an integrated approach to land and pest management.
We diligently make efforts to retain soils and reduce erosion by winterizing our vineyards and utilize such practices as straw wattles, straw mulching, grass seed, and ground cover, as well as maintaining drainage systems. We are committed to preserving the Napa River watershed. We practice water conservation by recapturing rainwater from our hillsides to use on property for irrigation. Solar metering devices closely monitor water levels in soils and vines and allow for more efficient irrigation practice. Where possible we irrigate at night to avoid water evaporation.
Our Napa Green Certified program emphasizes recycling, composting, and efficiency, diverting 89 percent of our materials away from landfills. We separately capture and repurpose rainwater and grey water, insulate all our glycol lines, and utilize LED bulbs everywhere possible. In addition, our Fish Friendly Farming practices help conserve and improve the natural creek banks along the property, preserve wildlife habitats, attract beneficial insects, and protect local watersheds from pollution.
At Seghesio Family Vineyards, we farm utilizing the greenest inputs possible to foster the long-term health of our vineyards while maintaining the highest quality hand-farmed fruit. We are proud to be a participant in the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance. As part of our focus on continual improvement, we are part of the Sonoma County Winegrowers sustainability program, which includes an annual farming plan that outlines how our sustainable practices will continue to evolve and improve each year.
In our winery, new processes aimed at the conservation of resources—primarily energy and water usage—have been adopted. Solar panels power 25% of the winery and cellar temperatures are maintained with the assistance of vents that pull in the cool night air. Sensors are placed at 30 locations in our vineyards to measure key climatic conditions and calculate irrigation schedules to replenish only the water that is actually needed for the vine and soil.
We are committed to the protection of streams and rivers adjacent to our vineyards from detrimental run-off. All possible winery waste is recycled, including glass, corks, paper, office equipment and electronics. Additionally, our fruit, vegetable and herb gardens supply our kitchen and guests with year-round ingredients.
Since 2012 all of our property at Archery Summit, including crops, landscaping and labor practices, has been certified to LIVE standards. LIVE (Low Input Viticulture and Enology) supports environmentally and socially responsible winegrowing through third party certification in the Pacific Northwest.
Our LIVE certification takes into consideration everything from energy and greenhouse gas reduction to water and waste management, native wildlife preservation, biodiversity, and worker health and safety. We also dedicate 5% of the land on each vineyard to ecological infrastructure.
Our farming practices include reducing fuel usage and emissions, restoring wildlife corridors, and developing ecological infrastructure. We encourage a healthy habitat for bugs, birds, bees, butterflies, reptiles, large and small mammals, wildflowers, trees and more, which in turn helps us to reduce pesticide usage.
We’ve made efficiency improvements with our equipment, including regular service and calibration of farm equipment to ensure safety, as well as training on proper use of equipment. Other technology improvements include low energy lighting and farm waste recycling.
At Chamisal, we do our utmost to care for the land. Our comprehensive sustainability program dictates how we farm to prevent any damage to the environment. Since 2010, our vineyards have been Sustainability in Practice Certified (SIP) through the Central Coast Vineyard Team’s SIP program. And, in 2016, we became the second winery ever to become SIP certified. This program, separate from vineyard certification, requires that winemaking operations also be sustainable and respectful of our environment.
We don’t use any herbicides, and we limit dust and air pollution by minimizing the amount of tillage. We go above and beyond certification requirements with organic practices including utilizing compost teas and cover crops to improve soil health and biodiversity. We use only organic fertilizers and have replanted vineyards to drought-tolerant rootstocks in order to reduce the need for irrigation.
With the goal of reducing our water usage by half, we’ve also installed moisture probes and other sensors to ensure our vines get only the water they need—not a drop more. We also installed a system that allows us to capture rainwater from the roof as well as recycle water that is used in the winery, which we can repurpose to irrigate our vines.
In the winery, we tightly monitor and control our energy and water use by using solar panels on our roof to produce 25 percent of our electrical power needs and by recycling every gallon of winery wastewater. Our goal is to use only one gallon of water for each gallon of wine we produce. We also have reduced or eliminated harsher winemaking chemicals from our cellar.
Double Canyon is proud to be LIVE Certified (Low Input Viticulture and Enology), for environmentally and socially responsible winegrowing. We have successfully farmed Double Canyon with very few inputs, thus increasing microbial diversity in the vineyard. We've set aside 75 acres of our land for conservation, preserving a healthy habitat for local wildlife.
Our winery was built using energy efficient concrete sandwich panel construction. We also used locally sourced raw materials whenever possible in the building of our facility. LED lighting in combination with skylights assist with lowering power consumption in the winery. We also compost in our winery and use recycled water and steam for efficient water usage in our barrel washing system.
Our Seven Hills Winery Founding Blocks Vineyard and McClellan Estate Vineyards are LIVE Certified (Low Input Viticulture and Enology). We have plans to construct a solar winery roof in the future.
We are proud to have certified Salmon-Safe vineyards and are committed to sustainable land management practices that protect water quality and promote aquatic biodiversity in important Northwest salmon watersheds. In addition, in vineyards that we haven’t planted with grapes we have planted native grasses that increase biodiversity and protect local flora and fauna.