"The type of closure selected for wine is one of the most contentious packaging issues. Junior MW at Coe Vintners reports on the choices available and some of the points producers need to consider when making that important decision"
See Article: http://www.wineindustryinsight.com/ex_nf.php?url=http://www.thedrinksreport.com/news/2014/15312-special-report-wine-closures.html
Our customers’ success is our success. I am approaching this topic from the perspective of the guy who is appreciative of your business in corks and intellectually convinced that natural cork based closures are absolutely the way to go for wines sold in bottles.
1. 60% of the wine sold in America is still under cork. This number is increasing. (Nielsen)
2. Wines sealed with corks are still gaining market share. (Nielsen)
3. More of the higher priced wines experiencing sales increases in the last 36 months are sealed with corks. (Nielsen)
4. Wineries who switched closures in the last 36 months were more often switching back to corks. (Nielsen)
5. There are still unanswered questions about aging, sulfur, copper, and reduction. Illegal levels of copper may prevent reduction?
6. There are risks of seal interruption with a screw cap in storage or transport because the screw cap seal is external.
Cork has the advantage:
1. Based on Nielsen data, Market Perception/ Perception of Quality- Consumer preference is still a cork. Especially true for any wine sold outside the tasting room. Why add value scrutiny to a wine in competition for sales against wines from a better- known or more reputable region? I know you make great wine. Would a buyer who has never been to the winery know that? Would a screw cap decrease the odds for the benefit of the doubt? The numbers say yes.
2. The obvious IF>THEN here is, “Can you ever raise your price once the product changes to screw caps?”
3. Cork is Sustainable
4. Cork is Recyclable
5. Cork is Repurposeable
6. Environmental Impact
a. Lower carbon footprint (manufacturing one ton of aluminum creates FOUR tons of carbon)
b. Less energy consumption during manufacturing
c. Less water used during manufacturing
7. The cork tree lives.
Environmental compliance in the countries where screw caps are made is a horrifying question. We might discover that certain manufacturers are trashing the earth and not careful about what they are selling or how they make it. http://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/story/2010/10/07/f-red-mud-bauxite-aluminum.html
Buds have broken almost everywhere thanks to Mother Nature's new sense of timing. And you may not be thinking of corks.
It looks like we will be about one month early for harvest everywhere. This is troubling and worrisome for a lot of reasons. People who have shoveled snow on Mother's Day are especially nervous.
Being a winemaker/ GM/ Vineyard Owner has to be the most romantic way (short of parenthood and marriage) to completely stress yourself out that I can imagine. So without adding to your stress by mentioning all of the potential challenges involved between here and harvest, I would like to mention a point about winemaking that seems to warrant attention.
Once the grapes have been picked, several things could potentially go wrong. Power failures, stuck fermentation, spontaneous re-fermentation, stuck ML, spontaneous ML, and a whole host of microbial/ sanitation/ filtration/ oxidation/ reduction/Murphy's Law- related assaults on your wine can happen, right? I am not a winemaker by commercial standards. But isn't it mildly stressful to preserve and express the excellence that you strive for in the vineyard? I have been told that great wine is made in the vineyard and bad wine is made in the cellar.
It just occurred to me today that the closure is the last and final thing (under your watch) that can go wrong. It is the last means of protecting the wine and trying to make sure that it gets to the consumer in good form.
The Good News:
Buy your wine closures from a large, reputable, progressive, green, quality- minded cork company like Amorim and you will have one less reason to worry. Nobody has a monopoly on all of the good ideas. Amorim spend a ton of money on R&D and quality control for your wine closures every year. Take advantage of our training and their expertise. We will do whatever it takes for you to feel comfortable knowing that you have done what constitutes best efforts in putting your wines on predictable path for aging. We have a closure for every wine at every price.
Call us! We'll take one more source of stress off the list.
This is the most fun time of the year for us: Harvest.
Right now is the best time to start getting your ducks in a row for switching from Ramondin to Sparflex or customizing that cork.
Please send emails of any type of image file to start the ball rolling with quotes, etc. for changes in capsules from stock to custom or from tin to aluminum, polylam, or PVC.
And on a sidenote: If you are using ANY plastic corks, you really should be asking me for data on the Neutrocork.
Amorim is keeping me really busy right now. I need advance notice on your orders as the whole country is ordering corks right now and production is hopping!!!! Please order early and often. and thank you for your business.
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