At SAMsARA, we continually look for ways to exercise our environmental stewardship, in every aspect of our business. From our energy and packaging choices to our water usage and farming practices, we feel morally obligated to responsibly use and protect the natural environment through conservation and sustainable practices.
By using 100% solar energy to power our winery and tasting rooms, we hope to encourage others to join the battle against global warming and help reduce the world’s dependence on sources of non-renewable energy. We love being able to say our wine is truly solar!
Reduced Packaging – We continually look for way to reduce the amount of packaging we use in our operations. A recent example of this is our choice to eliminate foil capsules from the necks of our wine bottles. Historically used to help protect bottles from insects and other vermin that might be tempted to nibble at the corks, there is really no purpose for a foil capsule these days.
Reused Packaging – We encourage our guests to reuse their wine tote bags by holding a monthly contest. Bring in any reusable tote to take your wine home and you’ll be entered to win a monthly prize!
Recycled & Recyclable Packaging – Keeping your wine safe in transit is serious business, but the days of using petroleum based (plastic) shipping inserts are over! Our wine shippers are made from 71% recycled material and are 100% recyclable. And, of course, our wine bottles are 100% recyclable. Further, all of the wine corks we pull in our tasting rooms and personal lives are either reused in art or architecture or recycled into new cork products!
Most people don’t know that water is one our most precious natural resources. While only 3% of the water on Earth is fresh, only 1% of it is suitable for human consumption. So making really prudent use of the water that is piped into our facilities is super important.
Using less water in our winemaking diverts less water from our rivers, reduces water and wastewater treatment needs and also the amount of energy used to treat and pump that water. The environmental benefits of wise water usage are complex and wide ranging.
We are committed to the careful use of each drop of fresh water we use.
Winegrowing at SAMsARA starts with selecting special sections within each vineyard where soils, altitudes, slopes, and elevations will bring the best out of the vine. We believe that all of the important work should be done in the vineyard, with little handling or manipulation of the fruit once it reaches the winery.
Over our history, we have continually sought to increase the amount of fruit we source from sustainably farmed vineyards, with the goal of using 100% sustainable fruit by 2023. Guess what? We’ve done it!
Foil capsules that previously covered the neck and cork of each of our bottles was waste we thought we could eliminate from our winery. However, we knew that some people appreciate the capsules for their aesthetic and the ritual of cutting foil before uncorking our wine.
Even though capsules served no functional purpose, as they don’t add anything to the taste or ageability of our wines, we gave our club members and customers a chance to weigh in.
Well – we received almost 200 responses to our survey, and more than 90% of respondents voted in favor of removing foil capsules from our bottles.
Reinforced by the feedback on the subject, we started phasing out the use of foil capsules on our wines.
Griffith Davies, a wine club member, summarized it nicely: “Approach it like your winemaking: Sometimes less is more.” Winemaker Matt Brady appreciates this nod to our low-intervention winemaking!
SAMsARA’s focus on sustainability and environmental stewardship continues to guide our thinking about all aspects of our business. Not only is protecting the Earth for future generations the right thing to do, but it also makes business sense. We’d like SAMsARA to continue to making exceptional, cool-climate wines from the Sta. Rita Hills long into the future . . .
As such, we started looking at our wine bottles, which are a major part of our industry’s carbon footprint. Glass requires high temperatures for manufacturing and significant fuel to transport due to its weight. According to a study by the California Wine Institute, bottles account for 29% of wine’s total carbon footprint.
We are pleased to announce two exciting changes regarding our bottles.
Change #1: Made in California, not in China
Did you know that more than 50% of the wine bottles filled by U.S. wineries are made in China, including ours, until now?
By switching to a bottle made in California, we eliminate the 7,000 mile journey from China to Goleta, and avert 3 tons of carbon dioxide emissions every year while supporting a domestic manufacturer.
Change #2: A lighter bottle
The current bottle weighs 600 grams, our new bottle only 468 grams (= 22% reduction). The shape of our new bottle will be identical, but lighter bottles will save 0.7 tons of carbon dioxide when transported from our winery to the place of consumption.