The Wine Discovery Sessions are something that we all look forward to. As the name hints, it is a unique chance to spend time with a particular wine and a multitude of wine leaders. The 2016 Wine Bloggers Conference will have 3 sessions for attendees on BOTH Friday and Saturday. This year, we are pleased to welcome pioneers in New Zealand wine sustainability, Yealand Family Wines. Combining the very latest cutting-edge green technology and highly innovative thinking, the Yealands name quickly became synonymous with a passion for crafting ultra-premium wines in the most environmentally-friendly manner. Yealands has shared with us beautifully done videos about their operation and the five ingeniously weird ways Yealands Family Wines is redefining “Eco-friendly” in New Zealand.
#1 Babydoll Sheep
Yealands employs up to 8,000 miniature babydoll sheep in the vineyards to mow the grass, decrease tractor passes and eliminate the need for weed spraying.
#2 Kune Kune Pigs
They’ve also enlisted an army of kune kune pigs to help shoulder the work load. They are, undoubtedly, one of the cutest eco-friendly initiatives around!
#3 Playing Music to Vines
Solar powered speakers throughout the vineyards play music from the likes of Mozart and Chopin to vines eight hours per day. Owner, Pete Yealands, believes it has a positive effect on the vines and even claims his chickens, or “chooks” as he refers to them, lay bigger eggs. One thing’s for sure, the people and animals that call Yealands home certainly love it!
#4 Recycling Vine Prunings & Winery Bi-Products
Bio char made from recycled grape skins, seeds and vine prunings is added to the compost as a means of providing nutrients and water to the vines and helps to store carbon in the soil. Vine prunings are also used to heat hot water at the winery, saving both energy and money.
#5 Native Trees and Wetlands
Yealands Seaview Vineyard is home to over 25 wetlands that capture water run-off, increase flora and fauna diversity and create a home for native, endangered birds. Over 75,000 native trees and flaxes have been planted to protect the vines from strong coastal winds and increase biodiversity.
Please plan to join us on Saturday, August 13th at 1pm when Tamra Kelly-Washington, chief winemaker for Yealands, will lead a discovery session, including a lively discussion about environmental, social and economic benefits of sustainable wine growing and winemaking as well as a guided tasting of the Yealands portfolio.
Discover more of Yealands Family Wines!