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Sometimes, the awareness of being small, a drop in the bucket, holds back ideas and projects. Others are so convinced of the goodness of their beliefs that they feel the same, aware that the world cannot be changed, but that maybe others will follow the path taken, perhaps making the change a little more “robust”. This is what happens to pioneers, even in the world of wine. As was, in its own way, the Salcheto winery by Michele Manelli, in the land of Nobile di Montepulciano. Which, inaugurated in 2011, was the first completely off-grid in Italy, the first to be self-sufficient in terms of energy, a pioneer of environmental and social sustainability.
And that, in 10 years, celebrated in these days among the vineyards, has managed to save 1.1 million kWh and over 2.3 million kg of CO2eq emissions avoided, the equivalent of a new planting of 3,300 trees. during their life cycle. Thanks to light wells inspired by NASA technologies of the 1950s, which also serve to bring the grapes to the cellar, by fall, to vertical gardens to mitigate the external heat and maintain the internal temperature, and also to derive biomass from the waste of the vine cycle to produce energy, to the study of lighter glass bottles and so on. A winery that has, as Andrea Rossi, president of the Consorzio del Vino Nobile di Montepulciano said, has ignited the spark of a change “which today makes us aspire to become the first certified sustainable territory of Italian wine”.

“When we started, the goal was and is to change the paradigm of doing business, which means taking responsibility for the territory and society in which we live, to improve things”, said Michele Manelli, which today has 58 hectares of vineyards and produces 400,000 bottles every year. “We have put together existing technologies and studied novelties, with the aim of continuously improving, in every respect, which is the same goal with which we look to the future”. A path that has been important, up to now, for the winery which in fact was the “cradle” of the Equalitas certification, today a reference in the Italian scenario and beyond, and the first to measure the “carbon footprint” of the entire cycle. of life of a bottle along the supply chain, in a work on the front of sustainability at 360 degrees, which saw Salcheto be among the first Italian companies to be awarded, among the many awards, also with the “Robert Parker Green Emblem” by “The Wine Advocate “.
“Ten years ago – recalled in a video, among others, Ermete Realacci, president of the Foundation for Italian Excellence, Symbola – the Symbola Seminar was held in Montepulciano; precisely there because an important challenge was starting: to build the first completely self-sufficient cellar from an energy point of view. Salcheto won that challenge and faced other frontiers, such as building indicators that help to read these processes in the world of wine. Well, it can be done: tackling the green transition by making businesses even stronger and more competitive. It pays to be good ”. “I am incredibly proud of all the esteem that the entire supply chain seems to transmit to us at this moment – said Michele Manelli – but even more so to be able to celebrate it with all the workers and collaborators who made this adventure possible. We have achieved the objectives of the then Agenda 2020 and it was not taken for granted, now we are starting to look forward to the next goals ”.


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Marco Ribaudo

Marco Ribaudo

For the love of food and wine! Marco Ribaudo, Certified Sommelier, with 25 years in the food and beverage industry now invites you to join him in his latest adventure, the opening of la Cucina del Vino to share his culture and passion for creating unforgettable memories around the table.

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