What Sustainability Means to Us

For New Zealand’s wine industry, it means a commitment to protect the places that make our famous wines. Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand is widely recognised as a world-leading sustainability programme and was one of the first to be established in the international wine industry in 1997.

In the mid-1990s, after considerable testing, the industry launched this holistic vineyard programme. SWNZ was designed to provide a 'best practice' model of environmental practices in the vineyard and winery. Realising the New Zealand wine industry can achieve more together than alone, the programme was elected by grape growers across the country, followed by wineries with the establishment of sustainable winery certification standards in 2002.

Today, 98% of New Zealand’s vineyard producing area is Sustainable Winegrowing NZ certified, with another 7% operating under recognised certified organic programmes. Monitor, measure, reduce... repeat. Sustainable certification must be awarded through an independently audited programme - either Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand or a recognised organic or biodynamic certification.

Recognised certification programmes include AsureQuality, BioGro-NZ, Demeter, ISO 140001 and New Zealand Winegrowers’ own certification programme, Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand®, SWNZ®.