Our vineyards are all certified organic & biodynamic. In the vineyard we use competitive biology, aiming to be completely chemical free in dry years and using half the organic standard of copper and sulphur in wet years. The goal is to lift vine health through soil health and complexity, and combat disease through an active and competitive leaf surface biology, essentially crowding out disease causing organisms.
When growing the grapes herbicides, insecticides and most fungicides are prohibited. Chemicals used must be naturally occurring and not poisonous. This allows some sprays to be used that are not harmful, and not taken up by plant tissue. In addition, anything you add to the land must also be organic, particularly fertilizer. This is why we make our own compost as fertilizer and any other mineral elements are in a mined not refined format.
David believes that most of the worlds best wines follow biodynamic practices. There are two key components to this:
- Typically, you influence the soil microbial activity so that soil matter is alive with a balance of microbes that mineralise and feed plants. On one hand this reduces the necessity of adding quick hits of fertilizers which although immediately effective can end up unbalancing a biological process by overdosing.
- The second part respects the form of agriculture that predates conventional farming where cosmos relationships determined the best times to manage a farm. Many industries subconsciously still practice this in varied forms, in the same way fishing is aided by tides and luna changes, so it is with biodynamics in the vineyard. The astrological calendar becomes an aid to when the best time to apply changes to agriculture.
Of course, this also extends to the winemaking, where the same thing goes: cleaning agents like chlorinated compounds are out, no organic wine can be mixed with non-organic wine.
Organic winemaking and organic grape growing involves auditing by a registered authority, in our case ACO (Australian Certified Organics), to determine that all stages of the process of grape growing and winemaking comply with a strict regime. To you it means the bud logo with a producer number attached, your guarantee that compliance is correct.