Goodbye Cork? Wineries Try New Plant-Based Closure
on 21/05/13 at 10:17 amWine
If you were remaking The Graduate in wine country this decade, there might be a great future in bioplastics. When organic, biodynamic and sustainable vintners look to bring their low-impact philosophies to their packaging, they often end up torn over what to do about closures.
Cork is the traditional choice, and it is a renewable material, unlike the alternatives: screw caps are made from mined metals, while synthetic corks are typically derived from petrochemicals. On the other hand, if some of your wine ends up flawed because even a small percentage of corks fail, that’s outright waste—not exactly a sustainable practice either.
In late April, alternative-cork manufacturer Nomacorc unveiled a new type of closure—made from renewable polymers derived from sugar cane. The company is touting the line, called the Select Bio Series, as 100 percent recyclable, with a net zero carbon footprint. Like the original Select Series, it gives winemakers a choice of different oxygen transfer rates to prevent flaws fromoxidation or reduction in certain types of wines.