What is Organic Wine? A Guide to Eco-Friendly Winemaking

With more people focusing on health and the environment, it's no surprise that organic wine is creating a buzz. We see those “Organic” stickers more and more on wine bottles. But what does the term “organic wine” entail, really? In this blog post, we'll explore the history of organic wine, the principles behind this eco-friendly approach to winemaking, its numerous benefits, and more. Let’s dive right in.

Explore the world of organic wine, its history, benefits, and trends. Discover how this eco-friendly choice shapes the future of winemaking.

What is organic wine?

Organic wine farming avoids synthetic chemicals, like pesticides and fertilizers, which makes for happier earth and healthier grapes.But making an organic wine doesn't stop in the vineyard; it continues in the winery too. The wine must be processed without any genetically modified organisms (GMOs) or artificial additives. It's a careful dance of balancing tradition with innovation, all while keeping nature in the lead.

Is organic wine vegan?

Organic wine isn’t necessarily vegan. And “no artificial additives” doesn’t mean there are no additives at all.


For example, organic wine that is not vegan can still contain yeast, egg whites, and other animal by-products. If you’re looking for organic vegan wine, make sure you read the label first (or ask the store clerk for clarification).

The history of organic wine

Organic wine may seem like a trendy newcomer, but it has deep roots. Wine has been made organically for thousands of years, way before synthetic chemicals existed. However, in the mid-20th century, as industrial farming methods became popular, many vineyards started using synthetic pesticides and fertilizers to boost yields. The organic wine movement began to flourish in the 1970s and 80s, inspired by increasing environmental awareness. It was like a “back to basics” approach to winemaking, honouring the traditional ways while taking care of the earth.

The benefits of organic wine

But why, you may ask, should you choose organic wine?

Here are a few good reasons:

Healthier grapes (healthier you): Organic wines are made from grapes grown without synthetic chemicals. That means fewer chemical residues in your wine glass. Cheers to that!

Environmentally friendly: Organic farming practices contribute to healthier soils, water conservation, and increased biodiversity.

Taste: Many people believe that organic wines have a pure, intense, and authentic taste. After all, they are made from grapes that have been treated with a lot of care and attention.

“As a sommelier,” says Scott Zebarth from Praise Wines, “I’m captivated by the harmony of organic wine. It’s a beautiful fusion of nature and winemaking. Beyond the flavors, it’s a meaningful choice that connects us to the earth and supports a greener future for the wine industry.”

Organic vineyard in Italy, showcasing eco-friendly viticulture

Current trends in organic wine production

Now, let’s talk about the trends. Today, organic wine is not just a tiny niche; it’s a booming sector in the global wine industry. 

From Europe to Australia, wineries are making the switch to organic. There’s an increasing demand from wine drinkers (like you) who want wines that are both delicious and responsibly made.

The organic wine movement has also gained momentum due to the growing awareness of climate change and its effects on agriculture. As winemakers witness the impact of climate variability, many are turning to organic practices as a means of adapting to these challenges. 

By nurturing healthier soils, promoting biodiversity, and reducing their carbon footprint, wineries can play a pivotal role in mitigating the effects of climate change on their vineyards and the broader ecosystem.


The future of organic wine in sustainable winemaking

The future of organic wine is bright and promising. As climate change becomes a pressing issue, organic and sustainable practices in winemaking are becoming the need of the hour. From using solar power in wineries to water-saving techniques in vineyards, the wine industry is adapting and innovating. Besides, technology is making it easier than ever for wineries to go organic. Whether it's apps helping farmers track vineyard health or drones monitoring soil moisture, tech is supporting the organic revolution in wine.

How to choose and enjoy organic wine

When it comes to picking a bottle of organic wine:

  • Look for certification labels: Labels like USDA Organic in the USA, or the EU organic leaf in Europe, are proof that the wine is truly organic.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask: If you’re in a wine shop or restaurant, ask the staff. They are there to help!

And when it comes to enjoying your bottle, treat it like any other wine. Pair it with good food, good friends, and savor every sip.

Fun fact: Praise Wines offers organic wines in Canada (that are also vegan). We are committed to sustainability, which is why every bottle purchased also gives access to a year’s worth of clean water to someone in need. Learn more about Praise Wines’ collaboration with water.org here.

Frequently asked questions (FAQ):

Does organic wine mean it’s sulfite-free?

Not necessarily. Sulfites are a natural by-product of fermentation. However, organic wines typically contain lower levels of added sulfites compared to conventional wines.

Is organic wine more expensive than conventional wine?

Sometimes. Organic farming can be more labor-intensive and yield smaller crops, which may affect the price. But remember, you’re paying for quality and environmental sustainability.

Can I find organic wines easily?

Yes, organic wines are becoming more widely available. You can find them in supermarkets, wine shops, and online.

Do organic wines taste different?

Taste is subjective and depends on many factors. However, some people find that organic wines offer a pure expression of the grape and its terroir. Why not try and see for yourself?