LaStella Winery is proud to be Certified Sustainable as of 2021. Our journey to Sustainability has been a long and arduous one, but a worthwhile one as well. The wine industry in the Okanagan has been growing exponentially in the past two decades. Over a million visitors make their way to this region that is now known as the Napa of the North.
Sustainability in the Okanagan and British Columbia
As the region continues to grow and prosper, it is important to cultivate a purposeful relationship with the land and ensure that the practices we have in place in our vineyards and winery are sustainable. Our goal for sustainability is to leave the land in a better shape – healthy soils and vineyard ecosystem included – so the next generation can take over the stewardship.
That is why LaStella Winery has worked closely with Sustainable Winegrowing British Columbia (SWBC) in the past ten years to become Sustainably Certified. Ever since we stepped foot in this industry, our love for winegrowing cannot be put into words and the goal was to be fully sustainable from get go. This goal was not an easy task, but it is possible and necessary, and it took our whole team to achieve this. Everyone from our vineyards, the tasting room and office has contributed massively to this goal.
Sustainable Winegrowing British Columbia (SWBC)
SWBC is an ongoing project of the BC Wine Grape Council, pioneering sustainability certification in beautiful British Columbia. SWBC was created by a pro-active team of BC wine industry volunteers, who gathered local knowledge and expertise and learned from programs in other winegrowing regions. SWBC also provides educational resources and training to help vineyards and wineries establish sustainable practices. Organizations and projects like this have allowed many wineries to work together towards a sustainable future for winegrowing.
SWBC’s Sustainable Vineyard and Winery Standards aim to protect and preserve the land, soil, water, plants, and animals that support your business; cut costs and lessen your environmental impact by reducing the use of water, energy, fertilizers, pesticides and packaging and minimizing waste; become more efficient and organized so you can streamline your efforts and identify areas for improvement; prevent pollution and enhance carbon capture in vineyards with appropriate technology; identify areas of excellence and proudly showcase them to your customers; and foster relationships with regulators, employees, neighbours and the community.
Sustainability at LaStella Vineyards and Winery
This is the first out of a four-part blog series about Sustainability at LaStella. The next blog posts will cover how we have adhered to the standards set by SWBC for our vineyard and winery and the criteria to be Certified Sustainable and how we have geared our overall operations to be sustainable for employees as well including:
Vineyard – Soil and Nutrient Management, Social Equity, Irrigation Optimization, Integrated Pest Management and Setting a Sustainable Foundation
Winery – Water Efficiency and Conservation, Energy Efficiency and Management, Responsible Waste Management, Climate Action and Social Equity
Sustainable Business – Wine for Everyone, Balanced Production, Multiple Sales Channels, Core Team, Equal Employment Benefits and Growth.
“The certification validated all the systems we had put in place over the last 11 years in the vineyards, in the wineries and in the tasting rooms. It reinforced the feeling of pride I gained by managing the operations. It also gave me the opportunity to look at our practices with a magnifying glass and look at where we can improve. The support given by the certification in the continuous improvement process will be extremely helpful” – LaStella
Stay tuned for more!