A friend of mine taught me a new word last night: pribble.
A pribble is a problem of the privileged. This made me laugh as we discussed our pribbles over a Wilfred Rousse Chinon rosé and some Brazilian food.
There have been some recent storms in the wine industry teacup over how to define natural wine. This also seems a bit of a pribble to me. While I do support the use of native yeasts and therefore the expression of specific terroir in wine, as well as very prudent usage of additives like So2....oops, back to pribbles, again.
What I mean is that these are philosophical discussions whereas the issue of organic farming is a public health issue.
And not just for those that are consuming the wine but much more importantly for those who either work in or live near the vineyards. (Actual pesticide residue present in finished wine appears to be minimal.)
I arrived at my love of natural wine via my search for wines that were made organically. This search eventually led me to small, artisanal wine producers both in Europe and California, some of whom fall into the natural wine camp.
I think organic wine is a bit easier to grasp and more immediately necessary to support. Or at least, wine made from organically grown grapes. No toxic petro-chemicals are used in the grape farming. What is legally referred to as 'organic wine' in the United States is not only made from organic grapes but also has no added sulfites.
I have read two articles just this week that show why organic farming matters.
One article lists the 'dirty dozen' of fruits & vegetables that have the highest residue of pesticides (yep, grapes are on the list).
Another article tells us of a carcinogenic pesticide that is about to be approved for use in California. This pesticide is also known to cause neurological and fetal damage.
This report talks of the damage to our nervous systems from pesticides, specifically linking ADHD in children to pesticide consumption.
But hundreds of wineries from around the world, both large and small, have already proven that one does not need to use toxic pesticides and herbicides to produce stellar wine grapes.
And here is some proof that the consumption and production of organic wine is increasing due to consumer demand.
If we demand change, it will come.
Or we could just keep on drilling instead.....