24 Apr 2013 Back

db Green Awards 2013

Esporão Wins Sustainability Award

Despite the raft of mighty drinks companies in the lengthy shortlist for db’s Sustainability Award, it was the relatively unknown Portuguese wine and olive oil producer Esporão that convinced the judges it should be winner.

Praised for its holistic approach and range of current and ongoingprojects and the quality of its awards submission, it was felt that Esporão was truly sustainable in all aspects of its operations, from waste management to agricultural practices.


Among its many sustainable measures the producer has preserved almost 200 endemic Portuguese grape varieties in an ampelographic vineyard; created wildlife corridors; ceased using pesticides and fungicides; managed its forested areas for increased biodiversity; employed biodegradable materials in its buildings, as well as offered education for its employees such as free English classes.


It has even addressed economic sustainability with the adoption of an ethical business code promoted by the Christian Association of Entrepreneurs (ACEGE).

These awards made clear that commendable initiatives such as lightweighting and recycling are no longer enough to make you stand out from the crowd. Esporão’s journey to sustainability is about the three cornerstones to sustainability: Social,
Environmental and Economic. It is a long term strategy. The family consistently pursue new improvements every year, pioneering new techniques and
achieving an impact that reaches far beyond their own direct business interests to improve the wider community and environment.

Esporão is the largest privately held wine company in Portugal and was founded in 1973 in the Alentejo by José Roquette and is currently headed by his son, João Roquette, who is the youngest of six children and is renowned for his forward thinking approach.

The ‘Sustainability’ category was one of the largest categories. Esporão were up against international companies with world leading sustainability practises, with particularly strong competition from New Zealand and the New World.

Click to view Esporão’s initiatives and entry

Winner: Esporão

Runner Up: Gemtree Vineyards

Commended: Carlsberg UK

De Bortoli Wines
Yealands Estate Wines
La Motte
Villa Maria Estate

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