Regenerative farming might have become the new buzzword in the wine landscape, but for many, it’s a way of life. In a time of climate crisis, many winemakers see it as their responsibility to not only make exceptional wines, but to also farm their land in a way that will heal, restore, and strengthen their soils for future generations.
While at its core regenerative farming is what it sounds like – farming grapes in a way that regenerates soil health – it’s so much more than that. By working together with nature and using natural processes, regenerative farming goes beyond merely being “sustainable” and maintaining the status quo. This is done by the planting of diverse cover crops, integrating animals into vineyards for controlled grazing, planting fynbos corridors, mulching, composting and even planting vineyards along natural contours to shield grapes from the sun and catch water runoff. Farming this way increases biodiversity, restores soil and plant microbiome, and eliminates the need to introduce toxic pesticides, herbicides, and GMOs. Importantly, this has an environmental impact beyond the vineyard. Regenerative farming practices create what is known as carbon sequestration, where plants naturally capture and store carbon dioxide, rather than emit into the earth’s atmosphere. A prominent British wine publication has claimed that “regenerative viticulture is the only vineyard model based on the carbon cycle, which maximizes the vine’s ability to absorb CO2 from the atmosphere and store it in the ground, benefiting the soil and promoting biodiversity.” In this way, these farming practices actively combat and increase the earth’s resilience to climate change.
By fostering healthy vineyards, many winemakers believe that the resulting wines show greater complexity and a purer expression of site. At Belthazar, we believe that wines shouldn’t only make you feel good, they should do good. Visit us and try wines that benefit the planet from our large selection of organic, biodynamic, low-fi and regenerative wines.