A long-term vision and the deep love for the land have animated Donnafugata since ever as well as the sensibility for the production of environmentally friendly quality wines capable of representing Sicily in the world “ No quality without environmental sustainability, from the vineyard to the bottle”. This is the winery philosophy.
GOOD AGRICULTURAL PRACTICES
In vineyard Donnafugata has adopted Good Agricultural Practices (GAP) to assure an eco-sustainable management of agricultural activities through an Integrated production system.
The winery abandoned the usage of herbicide and chemical fertilizers and minimized the usage of phito-medicins in favour of Integrated pest management monitoring rainfalls, temperatures, humidity and insects that could be in the vineyards (moth) using pheromone traps.
Quality and sustainability in vineyards are achieved thanks to the green manure, organic fertilization, emergency irrigation, cluster thinning in order to rationalize the usage of the natural resources (soil, water, air and energy).
The good practices adopted in the vineyards by Donnafugata represent an essential tool for the production of healthy and quality grapes minimizing the environmental impact.
In agriculture, sustainability and quality find an important supporter in the biodiversity.
Biodiversity means adaption of plants even to extreme weather condition and, thanks to the interaction of different terroirs, it enables unique and identifying productions.
An example of this interaction is the 100 years old’s vineyard of Zibibbo grape recovered by Donnafugata on Pantelleria with ungrafted plants that survived at phylloxera. They are unique vines that can resist to the dryness, limestone and salinity with a vegeto-productive balance that produce outstanding quality grapes.
Further we add two experimental vineyards aiming to enhance the native grape varieties.
On Pantelleria, under the supervision of Professor Attilio Scienza, 33 biotypes of Zibibbo were planted in order to fully express the island’s viticultural potential and aim for the complexity of the wines of the islands.
At Contessa Entellina instead, Donnafugata is participating in a regional project providing an experimental field where 19 different autochthonous varieties have been planted, for a total of 30 biotypes. They are varieties and biotypes of vine varieties widespread throughout Sicily (Nero d’Avola, Catarratto..), and in some cases relic varieties, almost totally extinct (Alzano, Nocera, Vitrarolo). Over time, through the evaluation of the results of the microvinifications that has been carried out, we will be able to select the vine varieties capable of giving the best enological results on a certain terroir.
Calculating the Carbon Footprint of its wines and showing the certification on the label is a committment towards the consumers .
In 2011, Donnafugata together with DNV, one of the world’s leading certification bodies, quantified CO2 emissions along the entire production cycle, from the vineyard to the bottling.
By processing the data collected we were able to carry out interventions that have further reduced environmental impact, such as the use of a lighter bottle, in order to save on both the emissions from the production of the glass and those from the transport.
Therefore, as from 2014, on all Donnafugata bottles there is a label that reports the certification relating to the Carbon Footprint, expressing in a clear and verifiable way the company’s commitment to continuous improvement in its environmental performance.
To consumers, it is a very transparent communication further favored by the use of a QR code which can be read by smartphones, that leads to a page on the company’s website that reports the main results of the carbon footprint calculation, segmented by product category.
ENERGY SAVING AND CLEAN ENERGY
On the path of sustainability, Donnafugata aims to reduce energy consumption through several choices such as the night harvest of the Chardonnay grapes at the Contessa Entellina estate allowing us to have energy savings of 70% in the refrigeration stages that precede the pressing, the underground barrel cellar in Marsala that, being carved in the tufa rock, allows us to maintain constant temperature and humidity (15° C and 85%), with the minimum expenditure of energy, the production of clean energy from renewable sources such as the photovoltaic systems installed at Contessa Entellina, (68 Kw) and Marsala (50 Kw) that allow us to save about 85 tons of CO2 emission a year.
Therefore there are many paths of sustainability that lead to Donnafugata: a winery that never ceases to pursue increasingly advanced goals.
Baldo M. Palermo [email protected] tel. 0039 0923 7242267
Laura Ellwanger [email protected] te. 0039 0923 724258