If you’re a wine drinker, you’re in a powerful position.
Viticulture (the science, production and study of grapes) is a branch of the science of horticulture. “Sustainable viticulture” goes vital steps further and views the vineyard as a whole system which creates a high level quality fruit production reducing reliance on synthetic chemicals and fertilizers to protect the growers, the consumers and the environment. Many conscientious vintners ascribe to this method and produce some very fine wines while pursing a responsible higher goal. Universities and private organizations responsibly teach and encourage these practices.
The UC Davis-based statewide Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (SAREP) is an example of the trend towards a worldwide sustainable viticulture focus.