Organic - The Environment
In Vincelles, respect for the environment and for our wines runs very deep. Here, vines are not “farmed”, but “tended”. Viticulture is “sustainable” with grass allowed to grow between rows (more than the average for the region), we treat and recycle our waste water (with a purification centre built in 1999) and all of our vineyards have been using “sexual confusion*” for more than 15 years.
(* “Sexual confusion” is used to disrupt the mating cycles of male and female butterflies by releasing large quantities of synthetic pheromones. These pheromones mimic the natural substances released by females to attract males, and males are unable to locate females when the atmosphere is saturated.
This is a biotechnical, environmentally-friendly technique which results in fewer eggs and fewer caterpillars, and therefore less damage to the vines).
Champagne H.BLIN is also an active member of the Magister Group of the Champagne Committee, which promotes sustainable practices and works to improve grower practices.
More than 70% of the vineyards tended by H.BLIN have been awarded VDC certification (for sustainable farming in Champagne), and in a few years this will rise to 100%. As an environmental certification, VDC carries the same weight as HVE (high value for the environment), but with criteria specially developed for the appellation of Champagne.
VDC requires vintners in Champagne to grow sustainably. This is a voluntary programme, in which Champagne growers make a constant commitment around 3 lines of action: biodiversity footprint,, carbon footprint, and water use footprint.
The aim of this certification is to reduce the pressure that our vineyards apply to their surrounding environment (air, climate, water, oil, biodiversity, landscape) and to restrict the number of chemicals used.
The VDC reference document, compiled by the Champagne Committee and recognised by the Ministry of Agriculture in May 2015, lists more than 120 points.
Indeed, some of the vintners at Champagne H.BLIN have gone above and beyond sustainable farming, converting part their vineyards to fully organic methods – with the rest sure to follow.
Today, almost five hectares of our x vineyards are certified Organic (since certified 2013) and approved by Bureau Veritas. By 2023/2024, this will extend to 12 hectares.
Currently, H.BLIN is the only cooperative vintners’ union to produce and market organic champagne under their own label.