Earth Day: Drink Some Wine, Plant a Tree

I wouldn’t call myself an environmentalist. Those folks live in trees and work for Greenpeace, right? Well, maybe not, but isn’t that what a lot of people think? I do care a lot about the environment and my family and I make decisions everyday to help make this world a better place to live in.

Several years ago we chose to buy a Prius. It was for my wife and she was commuting a good distance, so we thought it was a good idea. I quickly realized what a great vehicle it was: high gas mileage, funky design that stands out and says “I care”, not to mention the vehicle is packed with great technology. It didn’t take me long to get behind the reasoning as to why the vehicle’s engine shuts off at stop lights or in parking lots. Every car should have that ability – it would save a ton of fuel, but the US fuel mileage standards doesn’t include a stop / start in their testing cycle so manufacturers don’t care. Sad.

Anyway, this blog isn’t about cars, but the vehicle in the garage represents one of the things we’ve changed in our daily lives. Of course, there’s lots of other things like recycling wine bottles and corks. My wife even made a couple of wine cork wreaths this past year. And we’re teaching our girls better ways to live daily life with minimal impact on the earth. It just makes sense.

When I saw that Trinity Oaks Winery plants a tree for every bottle of wine purchased I couldn’t help but think, “What a great idea”!

Their One Bottle, One Tree program has planted nearly 7 million trees to “take one step to a greener tomorrow”. But I can’t figure out if this is a really unique marketing plan or if the owners of the winery just care a lot about the environment. Either way, I guess, it’s a feel-good kind of thing. And as we approach Earth Day, 2012 I’m wanting to seek out some of this wine I’ve never had.

All the wines retail for $9 and they offer Pinot Grigio, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Merlot and Cabernet. They all also are designated with the California AVA (American Viticulture Area) meaning the grapes come from all over the state. Not uncommon in this price range. So, how does a company that retails wine for $9 plant a tree with every bottle? Most of the trees are planted from seedling in Brazil, meaning it probably costs just pennies to plant each one.

I’m so happy to see wineries, well this one anyway, take a stand for a better tomorrow. Many talk about organic and biodynamic farming or being sustainable, but I’m not aware of many taking steps like this. And for that, I applaud Trinity Oaks. Great job. Let’s see more wineries and businesses take action and work towards a greener planet. It doesn’t take living in a tree.

Soon to come, a tasting of one or more of these wines.


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