Wine production is an energy intensive business, as the wine needs to be warmed (prior to fermentation and bottling) and cooled (for storage and stabilisation).
Our extensive range of energy efficiency initiatives to reduce emissions, include:
• The adoption of SMART technology, such as heat recovery units, variable speed drives, refrigeration economisers, evaporative condensers, lighting sensor monitors and energy saving monitors. In addition, all tanks are housed within a fully insulated building, enabling Yealands Family Wines to become four times more energy efficient than the industry average.
• The utilisation of renewable energy sources, which incorporate solar, wind and grape vine prunings.
• Approximately 10% of the vineyard prunings are harvested, baled and burned at the winery. Each bale weighs around 200kg. At full capacity, our specially installed burners can produce over 500KW of energy (a similar equivalent to that consumed over a three week period in an average NZ household). This process eliminates over 180 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions (CO2) per year. We are the only NZ winery using these boilers as an energy source.
• The introduction of Babydoll sheep (an endangered breed of miniature sheep, too small to reach fruit in the vine canopy) and Kunekune pigs to graze our vine rows. These reduce the need to mow with tractors, reducing use of fossil fuels and carbon emissions. Furthermore, we simultaneously benefit from a natural fertiliser. Through our own extensive breeding programme, our goal is to reach 10,000 sheep by 2016.
• The installation of hydrogen generator units on a number of tractors, cutting fuel consumption by up to 15% and reducing emissions to almost zero.
• A New Zealand winery first in using bio-diesel, derived from recycled cooking fat, for all vineyard machinery.
• The introduction of PET plastic bottles for our Peter Yealands range, reducing our carbon footprint by 54%. This also means that our customers themselves create less waste.
• Reducing the average glass weight for our bottles. This in-turn has delivered an 11.5% reduction in CO2 respectively, for each of our glass and transport-to-customer emissions.