Ohhh do I have a treat for you fellow wine lovers. In fact, I am pretty sure you are going to want to propose to me after you have read this post. Bring me a crate of Sea Change vegan wine and you got yourself a date……
All joking aside, I am absolutely thrilled to introduce you to this sustainable, (and mostly vegan), wine choice. My passion for helping our planet and all we share it with is well known. It is how and what I live my life fighting for. Sea Change Wine have an ethos that aligns with me entirely. When they got in contact with me about working together, I whacked out the festive baubles as I was pretty sure all my Christmas’s had arrived…
Please note – This post is in collaboration with Sea Change Wine. Of course, my post will always reflect my honest opinions, findings and experience.
Why do we need Sustainable Wine?
I will never preach to you, that I promise you. But, I think a bit of understanding of the “why’s” is always a good place to start. Having a little knowledge on why change is needed helps you be informed in your choices. I also think it helps motivate you to make sustainable choices when you understand the huge difference small changes can make. I am 100% all about those small changes. It makes it far less overwhelming to make changes as and when things run out, need replacing or need buying.
Like many industries, there is waste when manufacturing wine. From the actual grapes themselves (grape waste is called pomace), through to how the wine is packaged and shipped. It is incredibly hard to eliminate this waste totally, so reducing as much as possible is the way forward.
Let’s think of a bottle of wine, the finished product. You have the bottle, the label, the cork or lid and the plastic wrap around the cork. Straight away we can see there is the potential for a lot of waste already! Single use items that have the potential to end up in landfill etc. I am pretty sure that most of us now are aware of the problem that single use plastics are causing. Our oceans, and the inhabitants of them, are literally suffocating with the 8 million bits of plastic that find their way into our oceans daily! But all is not lost. We have some light in the tunnel. We have choices and products available to us now to start to turn the tide (excuse the pun..)
Why is all wine not vegan wine?
The next question I hope to enlighten you on is why all wine is not vegan wine. I get asked this a lot by my non-vegan friends. After all, wine is made from grapes right? It is practically one of our five a day….This assumption that all wine is vegan, is a very logical one. Yes, wine is made from grapes. But, the traditional way in which wine is made, involves animal product. Surprising right? Who would have guessed that.
When wine is being made, it goes through a process called “fining”. This is a process that removes cloudiness, yeast, “off ” flavours or organic particles from the almost finished wine. Mostly, animal by-product agents are used, and I warn you, these may make you a little squeamish. The agents used in this process are usually;
- Casein – A milk protein
- Albumin – derived from egg white
- Gelatin – an animal protein from boiling animal parts
- Isinglass – Fish bladder membranes
- Chitin – fibre from crustacean shells
Are you surprised? I know, it seems hard to believe. In many cases, because these agents are not added TO the wine, (they are just used within wine making), they do not have to be declared on the ingredients list! But thankfully, the wine industry is evolving. There are many fining agents available now without using parts or our furry, feathered or scaly friends. No one is asking anyone to give up the good stuff here. Panic over my friends. We can all breatheeee.
Sea Change Wine – How are they helping?
So, enter stage right, Sea Change Wine. A company that is addressing many of these issues. It really is possible to become more sustainable in our wine drinking. It is also a company that enables us to enjoy our wine, while feeling slightly smug about our planet helping. Let me explain…
Sea Change Wine – Making a difference
Funding Ocean Conservation
I have a massive passion for companies that give back. An even greater passion for the Ocean! Companies that are willing to use some of their profit for good. Sea Change Wine does that. For every bottle sold, they donate a percentage to Ocean Conservation projects. Amazing projects like Sea Changers UK, Plastic Oceans Uk and Olive Ridley Project. You can see all of the charity partners right here. So far, Sea Change Wine have donated an impressive €70,000 in just two years!!!! How fantastic is that! This cash goes towards funding marine life protection, beach clean up’s, ocean pollution education and setting up marine animal sanctuaries. The work they are helping fund really is making a difference.
Planet friendly packaging
Sea Change Wine have made their packaging as minimal waste as possible. It also made me happy to discover the packaging keeping the bottles safe is actually shaped like a sandcastle. Its the little things…. Anyway, back to sustainability. They have;
- Removed the plastic wrap on bottles
- Use only lighter weight glass bottles
- Use renewable, plant based closures
- Use labels made from sustainable forests and grape waste
- Compostable packaging made from recycled materials
- Only use couriers with a sustainable “green” ethos for deliveries
Fun fact – The wine label desins were hand drawn by one of the Sea Change team. They illustrate the relevant sea creatures, but with litter hidden within the bodies. A gentle reminder of the dangers of sea pollution, and what Sea Change Wine are trying to achieve.
The Sea Change Wine itself
Ok, we are now onto the wine itself. The wine selection is ethically sourced, from wineries that have an ethos in sustainability. Sea Change Wine only partners with suppliers that know the absolute necessity for change. They must have a passion for being mindful of how they manufacture to bring sustainability to the wine industry. I have so far, tried a couple of their choices available. I can tell you without any hesitation, they are delicious. There are 5 labels available. Seahorse, Whale, Turtle, Starfish and Dolphin. There are a couple of bottles throughout the range that are not YET suitable for vegans. A little starfish tells me that they soon will be though……
The two wines I have tried so far are the Pinot Grigio Blush from the Dolphin label, and the Sauvignon Blanc from the Whale label.
£10.99 per bottle or £8.99 on multi buy
I love rose wine, but many of them can be too sweet for me. This one is perfect. It is crisp and dry, without having that acidity that some dry wines can have. It is a 2019 wine from the Veneto region of Italy. The recommendation is that it is paired with fresh and light vegan/vegetarian dishes, white meat or fish. I enjoyed it, shared with my eldest son, and accompanied with a bowl of olives. Delicious!
£10.99 per bottle or £8.99 on multi buy
I have to say, Sauvignon Blanc is usually my preference for white wine. So I suppose it already had a head start really. A French wine, from the sustainable wine makers, Chateau Canet. A dry, refreshing and crisp wine, like you would expect in a Sauvignon. Bursting with a subtle citrus flavour, it is recommended to be served chilled. Pair with white meats, fish, a cheese selection, or a vegan mac and cheese as I did! I love this bottle of gorgeousness.
£12.99 per bottle
Now this made my little heart soar when I spotted this. A vegan prosecco! I adore a chilled glass of bubbles, so I am over the moon they have this. I have yet to try it, but finding a vegan prosecco is the stuff of dreams. The fruit undertones in this offering, are peach and pear which sounds absolutely delicious. That’s my Christmas Day sorted!
** Sea Change Wine offer a full delivery service from their premises in Surrey. It is even free delivery if you are lucky enough to be within 5 miles of their office. They also have some great savings on orders of 3 and 6 bottles, and you can see the full wine range here. Not sure about you, but I am very happy about this. We are in a pandemic after all….
This concludes my introduction to Sea Change Wine. I am so happy that more companies are taking a planet over profits approach. It makes my heart happy. Like I have said in previous posts, if we make small changes, they all add up to big change. I hope I have informed you a little. I would love to know if you have been surprised by anything I have told you here? Let me know xx
If you would like to learn some other small changes you can make, the following posts may help.