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Living Less Unsustainably: Bulk Wine


Holiday Cheers to all! Hi, I'm master recycler John Fischer with KLCC's Living Less Unsustainably.

This time of year we often raise a glass for a toast to wish friends and family the best. We should do the same for the earth- perhaps our best friend of all.

Consider this. Seventy percent of the climate changing emissions in a bottle of wine come from the glass in the bottle. So this year consider bulk wine in your own container for your holiday gatherings. There are several places locally to get excellent wine, beer, and kombucha on tap, and not create a new bottle in the process of having a holiday meal- or your everyday dinner. I've listed the ones I know below. If you have other sources, let me know.

The idea of bringing your own container to the store to get wine is not unusual - in the rest of the world. Supermarkets in France have taps where you fill up your own container. But the romance of the bottle has taken over the wine market as a way to increase profit- not to increase quality, and even the wine industry knows this. Many fine wines are now shipped in bladders holding a thousand liters, and then bottled close to where they will be consumed as a way to reduce transportation costs. Eliminate the bottling step, and reduce climate impacts by more than two-thirds.

Yes, I know glass is recyclable, but it takes almost as much energy to transport, crush, remelt, and distribute the recycled bottles as it takes to make new glass. Re-using the bottle is far more efficient.

I make my own beer, and have some bottles that are 40+ years old.

Buying wine in a box is far more energy efficient than buying in a bottle, and according to the experts keeps the wine fresher far longer. But “BYOB” to the store is even better.

To the earth (clink!)!

Sundance Wine Cellars

Tap and Growler

John Fischer

John Fischer is a Master Gardener and Master Recycler and the host of KLCC's Good Gardening and Living Less Unsustainably.