In this day and age when we’re surrounded by pollution and bombarded by chemicals from all around us, I try to make sure that the things I eat and drink are as healthy as possible. While it may sound like too much work, it’s actually easier than you think. All you need to do is limit your intake of processed products and buy all-natural organic food whenever you can.
And today, almost all of our favourite foods and drinks are available in organic form. Even wine. But isn’t wine already a healthy natural product, you ask? After all, we’ve been continuously advised that a glass of wine is actually good for us. While wine does have many health benefits, it also contains some toxins which can cause damage. The standard wine is made of grapes which are sprayed heavily with pesticides and fungicides and treated with a dozen of other chemicals to give them specific flavours and qualities.
That being said, if you want to enjoy all the benefits of this drink (minus the bad stuff), you may be interested in trying organic wine.
What Is Organic Wine?
Organic wines are produced the good old-fashioned way – with naturally grown grapes. Instead of using herbicides and pesticides, organic farmers work with nature to keep the weeds and pests at bay. To do so, they increase the biodiversity in their vineyard. For instance, they use cover crops that lure the beneficial insects that are the natural enemy of problem bugs. To reduce the growth of grass and weeds, some organic grape growers bring small sheep to graze between the vine rows. This way, the vineyard becomes a natural, self-regulating eco-system that promotes the growth of grapes without the use of artificial and potentially toxic chemicals that can poison the soil and end up in the water supply. As a result, not only is organic wine good for you, but it’s also better for the environment.
Why Is Organic Wine Better for You?
Grapes grown the organic way certainly taste a whole lot better, and that reflects on the quality of the wine too. That being said, you may find that your favourite type of wine is tastier when it’s certified organic. Plus, there’s also the fact that organic wines have reduced sulfites which are preservatives added to wine to inhibit or kill any unwanted bacteria or yeast. Organic wine contains half of the maximum allowed limit of sulfites (220). And considering how sulfites have been found to be the main culprit for those bad hangovers the next day, drinking organic wine means you get to enjoy alcohol without this nasty side-effect.
But besides being free from toxins and hangover-causing ingredients, organic wine is found to contain a much higher concentration of all the good stuff wine is known to come with, such as antioxidants and anthocyanins. Research has also found that organic wine contains less sugar on average, which means it’s a better alternative if you’re watching your weight. You can also increase the beneficial effects of organic wine by picking grape varieties with additional health benefits, such as Shiraz. Organic Shiraz wine is found to contain high concentrations of flavoniods, which help reduce the risk of heart disease and prevent cancer, strokes and nerve damage.
How Long Do Organic Wines Last?
As I’ve mentioned, organic wines contain half the allowed amount of preservatives. And there are also some organic wines which are sulfate-free. As a result, organic wines have an expiration date like any other grocery item. They can usually last about 3 to 6 months. Once opened, you will need to keep a bottle of organic wine refrigerated and finish it within 2-3 days.
Where to Buy Organic Wine?
Nowadays, you can find many examples of organic wines on the alcohol shelves in supermarkets and on the wine lists of your favourite restaurants. You can even find online organic wine stores that offer delivery to your front door. The demand for organic wine in Australia is growing, and wine producers are answering to the demand. From Chardonnay to organic Shiraz wine, I’m sure, you’ll easily find your favourite grape variety in the form of a natural, toxin-free drink.
However, to be sure that what you’re drinking is truly organic, check whether the bottle is certified. Certification for organic wines in Australia can only be provided by an independent third-party organisation such as ACO or NASAA https://www.nasaa.com.au/. These Australian organisations carry out audits on vineyards to ensure that the grapes are grown in accordance with the strict standards of the department of agriculture for organic produce. It is against the law for producers to falsely promote that their wine is certified organic.