Wines Made With Organic Grapes
Organic wine sold in the United States fall into two categories: “Made with Organic Grapes” and “Organic.” The primary difference between the two is in the use of sulfites.
The majority of the organic wines in our portfolio are labeled as “Made with Organic Grapes.” These wines are grown under the USDA guidelines, as well as the reciprocating organic certification partner in their country of origin. We import wines from both Europe and South America, and all wines must adhere to USDA organic standards.
The biggest ingredient of note allowed in the Made with Organic Grapes category is Sulfur dioxide (sulfites), and that is the only ingredient differentiating those wines from USDA Certified Organic wines. The level of sulfites in wine is measured in “ppm,” or parts per million.
Wine labeled as Made With Organic Grapes
Our winery partners produce wine labeled as “Made With Organic Grapes” with the lowest level of sulfites possible to prevent spoilage and bacterial contamination. White wines are particularly difficult to produce without the use of sulfites, so nearly all imported organic white wines will be produced with the use of added sulfites.
The legal maximum for the combination of natural and added sulfites in wines labeled as “Made With Organic Grapes” is 100 parts per million (ppm) vs. the limit of 350 ppm in conventional wines.
All organic wine sold in the United States that contains any sulfites over 10 ppm must be labeled as “contains sulfites.” Sulfur dioxide, a compound formed from sulfur and oxygen, occurs naturally during fermentation in small quantities, so all wines will have a very small amount of sulfites present. Therefor it is very difficult if not impossible to produce 100% organic sulfite free wine.
It’s important to note that in the Made with Organic Grapes category, 100 percent of all grapes (of all varietals) must be certified organic. The grapes are grown in accordance to USDA organic standards, without the use of most conventional pesticides, fertilizers, synthetic ingredients, ionizing radiation, or sewage sludge.
Natural methods are used to combat pests and other natural vineyard hazards. These include the use of predatory insects such as ladybugs and lacewings, and a systematic approach that promotes healthy vines and minimizes the vineyards’ susceptibility to insect and disease attack.
All of our wines Made with Organic Grapes are clean, fresh superior wines that are both good for the earth and tantalizing for the palate.