A huge thanks and shout out to all our neighbours and the members of the Saanich Peninsula Chamber of Commerce for recognizing Parsell Vineyard with the Green Business of the Year award for 2019. We're proud to be the winners of this award most of all because our commitment to environmental practice--like your commitment--takes some work. We're the first winery in British Columbia (and as far as we know, still the only winery) to get the approvals to package in reusable bottles, and we want to let all you good people at Moss Street Market know that, thanks to regulars like you, we're seeing a 25% return on our bottles. And we know there are lots more out there in circulation, enjoying a second life as water bottles, vinegar containers, and cherished souvenirs of Victoria. On our end, the bottles you bring back to us are washed, sterilised, and returned to use.
Glassware accounts for the largest part of the carbon footprint of wine (here's a good article, if you're curious), and keeping bottles in local circulation is a solution that we hope you'll find both important and kind of awesome.
We're also piloting a new en vrac wine system of those of you looking to save some money on your local wine (because local wine should be environmentally and economically sustainable) by purchasing young wines in larger formats. You can re-bottling your en vrac large format at home, using any bottles you'd like (our approvals only allow us to bottle our wines in our reusable logo growlers or standard packaging with a Parsell label, so, sorry, we can't fill your growlers for you), and you all you cocktail enthusiasts can experiment with making your own vermouths, if that's your fancy. We're running a series of affordable and fun 4-hour Winemaking Practicums (see the blog post that follows) if you're keen but not sure how to handle any wine at home in creative ways that will let you make the most of large formats.
Because we make raw and natural wines, we're also able to achieve 100% gray water recapture at the winery, which is the second leading source of wine industry impacts. Our lavender plants love a little grape juice during harvest time.
So thanks again to everyone for the Green Business of the Year award, and we'll keeping working to live up to your trust in us as environmental stewards and local winemakers.