Wine Goes Green: From Bottles to Boxes

The traditional wine bottle may be in jeopardy after many wineries are going green by boxing their wine instead of bottling it. Imagine walking into a wine cellar and instead of elegant bottles from wall to wall there was just boxes. This idea may not be too far fetched. It may take away from the aesthetic tradition of wine, but when it comes to assimilating to the green way a box makes more sense.

Wineries are now beginning to offer various amounts of organic wines to deplete their carbon footprint. The wine itself is becoming more environmental friendly, next is the packaging. The battle of glass bottles versus paper boxes may not seem like a big deal. It is hard to believe that packaging wine in boxes instead of glass bottles will be beneficial to the environment. However, that is the case according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The making of glass bottles is a more thorough process than one may think. The production of glass and the cork for the bottle uses a considerable amount of resources, all while releasing green house gas emissions into the environment.

Not only is the manufacturing of wine bottles harmful to the environment, but also the distribution. The majority of wine is packaged on the West side of our nation and then shipped to the East side where the majority of wine drinkers live. This long haul of glass bottles across the nation leaves a much larger carbon footprint compared to boxed packaging. While almost half the weight of a normal case of bottled wine comes from the bottles, almost all the weight from boxed wine is the wine itself.

Major wine companies such as, the Wine Group, are becoming advocates to the switch from bottle to box. Not only is it good for the environment there are other advantages that come with it. Being that it is in a box the wine is typically stored in a plastic bag inside the box. Being in this bag the wine is vacuumed sealed which allows for it to stay fresh up to six weeks after its initial pour.

Still, despite the benefits of boxing wine major wine companies may be apprehensive. For the most part boxed wine is synonymous with cheap wine, which makes it hard for the major wineries to conform to the boxed wine idea. This could all change with the emergence of power the green movement has established in society. Constant pressure to be environmental friendly is pushing companies including wineries, to reduce their carbon footprint and take a stand to save our planet.

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