VINNATUR: PRODUCERS ELIMINATE PESTICIDES
A great result has been recently reached by VinNatur. None of the 80 samples analysed in order to check wine quality contained traces of pesticides, thus confirming that VinNatur offers consumers real guarantees and not simply declarations. First, research was carried out to identify 188 different pesticides and none of these were found, thereby guaranteeing the wines’ authenticity and coherence with VinNatur’s principles.
VinNatur represents 187 producers from 9 countries and has made this guarantee a point of honour for wine lovers. Angiolino Maule, President of VinNatur, explains: “We wanted to go beyond a simple self-certification. It is important that VinNatur wine consumers will drink wines which have been officially certified by external laboratories”.
All the producers who have joined VinNatur association in the last 5 years have been checked. Sulphur analysis reveal that 35 samples were below 50 mg/l ‒ as stated by the Guideline Procedure ‒ and 45 samples contained even less less than 10 mg/l (the limit for organic wines in Europe is 150 mg/l for white wines and 100 mg/l for red wines).
“It is the first time all samples analysed reveal negative test results. In 2016 on 150 samples analysed, 4 (3 Italian and 1 French) contained pesticides. For us it is a very important outcome. It confirms that we are moving in the right direction. It is not our final goal but it is certainly an important stage in the growth process we are doing as VinNatur association. We are focusing on how to replace copper and sulphur with vegetable extracts that help the vine building up resistance. But our most major project is on biodiversity”.
The biodiversity project ‒ supervised by agronomist Stefano Zaninotti from Vitenova – Vine Wellness in collaboration with biologist Irene Franco Fernandez, botanist Cristiano Francescato and entomologist Costanza Uboni, has involved 17 wineries for this year. Data deriving from surveys on soil, flora and fauna will allow to develop an appropriate scientific model enabling wineries to understand which are the most suitable plants that can be used for preserving soil microbiological fertility and helping vines develop properly. This will lead to a higher resistance of the vine itself, further reducing human intervention and getting closer to VinNatur aim: a healthy viticulture as naturally-driven as possible.
Association of Natural Wine Producers – VinNatur
VinNatur was established in 2006 in order to reunite small producers of natural wines, both Italian and European, and provide them with a proper tool for promotion and growth. The Association aims at promoting natural wines from a commercial point of view and at the same time developing specific knowledge of natural viticulture and natural wine making amongst both producers themselves and consumers.
“Natural wine” is the name given to a product derived from a healthy agriculture which rejects the use of pesticides, herbicides, chemical soil and foliar fertilizers. Great attention is given to soil and soil natural balance. VinNatur is carrying out researches in order to get rid of copper and sulphur, traditionally used for treating vines diseases, and replace them with natural extracts which help the vine building up resistance. Natural approach is not limited to the vineyard, but extends also to the cellar. Selected yeasts are not allowed, neither are additives (of any kind) or invasive techniques which do not respect the raw material. The aim is that of reducing and, if possible, eliminating the use of sulphur dioxide, whose side effects on human health are well known worldwide. This is possible thanks to a constant improvement of spontaneous fermentation, with indigenous yeasts, which are already available in nature and which give a distinctive value to wine as far as personality and uniqueness. Over the years, VinNatur has steeply increased the number of associates, from 65 wineries up to present-day 187 members belonging to nine different countries: Italy, France, Spain, Portugal, Austria, Germany, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Slovenia.