Why Organic Wine? Why Biodynamic farming? Part 3 Pesticides
A few years ago the death of a French winegrower, at a mere 43 years, officially recognised by the French government as directly due to vineyard pesticides, brings home how important organic is to the health of the farmer but also to health of the person drinking the result.
France uses around a quarter of the pesticides used in Europe and of this significant number, French vineyards consume 20% while only representing around 3% of the agricultural land.
It is not only French vineyards – vines are a high labour and delicate crop – systemic pesticides which create cancer, nervous system disruption and reproductive disruption (sometimes all 3 in one product) offer a cheap solution to both of these issues. Unfortunately they are cheap in the short term but very expensive in the long term as we are discovering with the costs associated with cleaning water in France (more on that in another post).
We have never sprayed any systemic pesticides on our vines. We have equilibrium with natural habitats for good bugs that keep the bad bugs in check. Equilibrium is key to balance and health in agriculture. Creating excessive yields through chemical fertilisers creates excessive growth that creates a haven for pests and disease. Likewise using weedkill destroys the natural growth and biodiversity that the pests would generally prefer to eat to our precious vines.
What can you do to make a difference? Buy certified organic or locally from someone you know and trust. We welcome visits. When you visit us you see first hand how natural methods benefit our farm and our health but also yours.
See our series on why organic starting with these basics in more detail. Read part 1 of this series, Read part 2 why organic. Come and learn more about organic farming with a visit to Chateau Feely in South West France ; stay with us or do a multi day course or multi day tour .