Composting is an integral part of our farming practices as a sustainable winery. Our vineyard is organic and compost returns much to the soil. Grape skins, spent yeast, grape stems, fruit pulp, you name it, we compost it. And you benefit from it. We began applying compost to our estate vineyards in 2007 and making our own compost pile on the property the following year. A natural fertilizer, compost promotes vine and soil health. Healthy grapevines yield the higher quality fruit desired to make the finest wines possible. There are also many useful resources online for learning how to make your own compost, such as HowToCompost.org and Composting101.com.
We recycle so much, we even have our own recycling dumpster! And recycling isn’t where it starts. First we’ve found ways to REDUCE our consumption, then REUSE what we already have (have you noticed that your wine club shipment boxes aren’t new?) and then we recycle what’s left. Quite honestly, we don’t even have much use for garbage pickup anymore.
Giving Back to the Community
Although after the great floods of the Illinois River in 2008 and 2013 we found ourselves being the recipients of donations, we are doing our part to be responsible citizens of our communities. We receive daily requests for donations, and last year gave away nearly $10,000 to those in need. This year we are investigating ways to convert our recyclables into cash for local charities. Stay tuned to find out how that works out.