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The glass bottle has undoubtedly played one of the most significant roles in the history of the wine industry. The first records of glass bottles date back to 1500 BC and it is due to the impermeable, watertight nature of the glass wine bottle that we can continue to enjoy wines that are hundreds of years old today.
Wine bottles can survive many years in a dusty cellar, be transported around the world and live to tell the tale even after dramatic events and disasters. Take for example the sunken bottles of Champagne recovered from a shipwreck some 170 years later, and still reportedly taste good due to the preservation power of the glass bottle.
Glass has been essential to the preservation of wine over many centuries and continues to sustain the industry today. Thus it is quite fitting that last year’s Great Wine Capital’s ‘Best Of Wine Tourism’ Award winner in Sustainability in Mendoza was Verallia, one of the world’s largest glass bottle producers.
Producing more than 16,000 million bottles annually, sold into more than 45 different countries, Verallia’s presence isn’t limited to its headquarters in Mendoza. It is a global company and with that significant reach comes significant responsibility.
Verallia won the award for sustainability due to their long term commitment to innovation and environmentally friendly endeavours to make their bottles more eco-friendly, or ‘green’. Their glass is 100% recyclable and they have been focused on streamlining production in recent years to reduce water consumption, use energy more efficiently, and reduce their carbon emissions.
In particular they developed their ECOVA line of eco-bottles which has also earned them the title of being one of the Top 100 most sustainable companies in the world.
A visit to the production plant in Mendoza gives you an insight into the world of glass not only for wine, but also for the local olive oil production and other liquid delicacies from Mendoza.
While bag in box, wine cans and even wine kegs all have their part to play in modern wine packaging, the glass bottle is certainly here to stay and the goal of Verallia is that it can do so while co-existing in a friendly manner with the environment.
By Amanda Barnes