Monday, July 27, 2009

The Plastic Wine Bottle Has Arrived.

Back in March last year I talked about my experiment of using recycled PET bottles for my wine and that the commercial industry was seriously looking into this.
Well it has happened!
Australian wine maker Wolf Blass has released a range of wines called 'Green Label' in PET bottles. They are 36% lighter in weight than the traditional standard 750 mL glass bottle, are shatterproof and 100% recyclable.
Incorporated in the bottle is an active oxygen scavenging agent which will increase the shelf life of the product.
This technology allowes the wine to remain in the bottle for 12 months with no impact on the flavour, aroma or colour. The new lines however are not intended for cellaring, but for the rather large market sector that usually consumes wine within 48 hours of purchase.

Australia has had a mixed reaction to changes to traditional packaging of alcohol over time.
While the nation embraced the "bag in a box" wine cask revolution in the 1970s, moves to market beer in PET bottles in the 1990s were less successful although they still make appearances at large events such as music festivals and sporting events, where glass is frowned upon.
But there has been a broad acceptance of screw caps on premium wine bottles after a period of scepticism which was a signal that consumers would embrace change that was for the good.
Maybe they will also see this in a similar vein.
Personally I believe there is a long way to go with this development but it will be interesting to follow its progress.

Monday, July 20, 2009

A July Update

July can be summed up in one word.
I came back from Hong Kong with something that turned into flu.
Swine flu?
Who knows. We didn't report it as it was easier, where we live, just to quarantine ourselves for a week and take the usual remedies.
The co driver ended up with it too but with lot less severe symptoms than I experienced.
So for three weeks we have basically been doing very little but feel sorry for ourselves.

The weather has been wet and cold so we didn't need too much of a reason to hang around the house.
But this has put our program well behind.
There is still a lot of pruning to be done both here and at another vineyard. And there is a lot of wine that still needs to be bottled.
We are hand feeding the cattle now as some pretty severe frosts have killed off any of the green grass that was left. Luckily this year there is a good supply of lucerne hay available albeit still very expensive. It's amazing how 'tame' they get after a week's up close and personal treatment. I can walk among and touch them now without any ensuing panic. The big bull is especially inquisitive but I still keep an eye on him.....just in case.
Even the calves have reduced their 'safe distance' perimeter.
So we are looking forward to some sunshine and dry weather over the next few weeks so we can catch up on our chores.