Our environment is the most important thing we have. Without it there is no Spy Valley Wines. As a result we are continually looking at what we can do better in reducing waste, implementing sustainable practices and protecting our irreplaceable environment.
In March 2010 we became certified to the international environmental standard ISO 14001. This is an environmental management system that identifies and controls the environmental impact of activities, products and services, improves environmental performance and sets environmental objectives and targets. This policy provides the basis for everything we do here at Spy Valley. You can view our full environmental policy here.
The environmental initiatives we have undertaken to become ISO14001 accredited include:
- Our winery, all of our company vineyards and our grower vineyards are accredited under the Sustainable Winegrowing scheme which promotes economically and environmentally sustainable vineyard management.
- We imported a glass crushing machine from America and crush all company and staff members' glass into a fine glass dust. This is then mixed with mulch and distributed below the grapevines to enhance light reflection into the vines. To the best of our knowledge we are the first company in NZ to import a glass crusher so that we can personally reuse the crushed glass.
- We have moved from using diatomaceous earth as a filtering aid, to using a product called Perlite. Unlike earth, this product can be tipped directly into the grape marc which is then used in organic mulch and supplementary farm feed. This reduces our landfill input by eliminating the need for skips for the waste earth.
- Our winery wastewater is treated onsite and pumped over the winery lawn.
- Our waste plastic is baled onsite and sent to Christchurch for recycling, as is our waste cardboard. We are also active members of TerraNova - a non-profit organisation which links one company's waste to another who might have a use for it eg. old pallets.
- In the vineyard we minimise spraying and use environmentally 'friendly' sprays wherever possible.
- In the office we distribute our company newsletter by e-mail to 75% of recipients. We intend to make this 100% as soon as everyone catches on to technology. We recycle our used printer cartridges, waste paper, magazines, kitchen plastics, cans and we have even taken the step of planting vegetable gardens, which will result in sustainable produce for the company dinner table one day.