Nature section

Sustainability

Practices for future generations
Hunter's home block with hawk in the sky
Tall gum tree at Hunter's garden
Close up of flax flowers
Hunter's employee and tractor in the home block vineyard.
Native plants up close
Hunter's native garden walkway
Our passion for sustainability.

Our passion for sustainability runs deep. We're proud to be able to harvest our grapes sustainably since our inception in 1979.

Quality and sustainability have been Hunter’s cornerstones since our first vintage. We’re a family winery, and we want to protect the land for future generations.

Vineyards

Sustainability is our vineyard's essence at Hunter's. We proudly stand alongside Sustainable Winegrowers New Zealand (SWNZ).

In 2021, we started on an eco-friendly journey, acquiring our first BioGro certified organic vineyard.

Our commitment to sustainability is ever-evolving. We've traded weed sprays for environmentally friendly mechanical under vine weeding, nurturing our vines for top-tier grape production. 40% of our vineyards are now herbicide free.

Waste reduction is a priority. We carefully manage grape marc, transforming it through composting with sawdust into a nutrient-rich blend that rejuvenates our vineyards. This enhances microbial activity, water retention, and penetration capabilities.

Even the smallest details matter. We've made the shift to biodegradable net clips, with over 10,000 of them in use each year, replacing plastic alternatives.

Winemaking

At Hunter's, we're committed to sustainability in winemaking. We've proudly achieved vegan certification for our wines, ensuring no animal-derived ingredients are used in our processes.

To lessen our environmental impact, we closely monitor and reduce our annual energy consumption. We measure and record electricity, water, diesel, and petrol usage, continuously seeking eco-friendly solutions.

Our energy-saving strategies include adjusting cooling unit temperatures during non-critical times, reducing energy for tank cooling and water usage. This minimises tartrate build-up, cutting down on water and energy needed for cleaning.

In a move towards sustainability, we've shifted to larger 700-litre oak barrels for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, reducing water and energy usage during cleaning.

We're also transitioning to electric forklifts to replace LPG, promoting cleaner operations. Simple initiatives like water recycling and upgrading to energy-efficient LED lighting further contribute to our commitment to reducing our carbon footprint.

Packaging

At Hunter's, as we handle our own wine bottling on-site, we are dedicated to finding innovative ways to promote recycling and enhance the circular economy.

We prioritise recycling all cardboard, glass, and paper materials whenever possible. Plastic is compacted and sent to a specialised facility for repurposing into new products.

To minimise our environmental footprint, we've adopted lighter bottles. In 2023, we made the move from 420g to 390g bottles, saving 41 tons annually. Over 95% of our bottles are now "lightweight," promoting efficient and sustainable shipping.

These bottles also contribute to sustainability, with 40% recycled glass content. We're actively striving to increase this to 70% in the near future, ensuring even greener packaging.

Hunter's Labels hold FSC accreditation. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is a globally recognized forest certification system that guarantees responsible forest management. This accreditation assures that our labels are sourced from responsibly managed forests, promoting sustainability throughout our packaging materials.

Biodiversity

In 2002, Hunter's Wines pioneered an extensive native garden, a rare oasis of mature dry land habitat on the Wairau Plains.

Today, this garden enriches our Rapaura vineyards, with towering totara, lancewood, and kowhai trees creating a thriving ecosystem.

We're committed to sustainability, using winery wastewater for garden irrigation and introducing exotic trees for shelter and diverse habitats.

In 2021, we uncovered a forgotten wetland on our neighboring vineyard, now a renewed habitat for native plants and birds, marking a milestone in restoration by late 2022.

We have introduced a new method in our vineyard rows to maintain a low grassy sward. This mixed sward approach benefits soil, provides nutrients, and reduces mowing. Our seed mix includes chicory, clovers, lupins, plantains, and rye corn. We use a crimp roller on the rye corn to lower its height and create a 'mat'. Clovers gradually take over, providing nitrogen to our grapevines. This approach enhances sustainability and vineyard health.

Certifications

We are a member of Sustainable WineGrowers New Zealand (SWNZ), Appellation Marlborough Wine and our Hunter’s Sauvignon Blanc is certified.

Our Hunter’s range is vegan accredited by the NZ Vegetarian Society (exclusive of Offshoot and MiruMiru™).

Furthermore, we are members of the Methode Marlborough Society, a community of wineries dedicated to the education and promotion of the quality of Marlborough sparkling wine.

The future

The future continues to look bright. We are in the process of reducing herbicide and pesticide use, we are transitioning to more organic vineyards and reducing our footprint. We are also looking at Carbon Zero certification programmes for bench marking and carbon reduction & offsetting. Watch this space!

Close up of Hunter's vines
Vineyards

Sustainability is our vineyard's essence at Hunter's. We proudly stand alongside Sustainable Winegrowers New Zealand (SWNZ).

In 2021, we started on an eco-friendly journey, acquiring our first BioGro certified organic vineyard.

Our commitment to sustainability is ever-evolving. We've traded weed sprays for environmentally friendly mechanical under vine weeding, nurturing our vines for top-tier grape production. 40% of our vineyards are now herbicide free.

Waste reduction is a priority. We carefully manage grape marc, transforming it through composting with sawdust into a nutrient-rich blend that rejuvenates our vineyards. This enhances microbial activity, water retention, and penetration capabilities.

Even the smallest details matter. We've made the shift to biodegradable net clips, with over 10,000 of them in use each year, replacing plastic alternatives.

Wine sample being taken from tank
Winemaking

At Hunter's, we're committed to sustainability in winemaking. We've proudly achieved vegan certification for our wines, ensuring no animal-derived ingredients are used in our processes.

To lessen our environmental impact, we closely monitor and reduce our annual energy consumption. We measure and record electricity, water, diesel, and petrol usage, continuously seeking eco-friendly solutions.

Our energy-saving strategies include adjusting cooling unit temperatures during non-critical times, reducing energy for tank cooling and water usage. This minimises tartrate build-up, cutting down on water and energy needed for cleaning.

In a move towards sustainability, we've shifted to larger 700-litre oak barrels for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, reducing water and energy usage during cleaning.

We're also transitioning to electric forklifts to replace LPG, promoting cleaner operations. Simple initiatives like water recycling and upgrading to energy-efficient LED lighting further contribute to our commitment to reducing our carbon footprint.

Hunter's Riesling being packed into cartons on bottling line
Packaging

At Hunter's, as we handle our own wine bottling on-site, we are dedicated to finding innovative ways to promote recycling and enhance the circular economy.

We prioritise recycling all cardboard, glass, and paper materials whenever possible. Plastic is compacted and sent to a specialised facility for repurposing into new products.

To minimise our environmental footprint, we've adopted lighter bottles. In 2023, we made the move from 420g to 390g bottles, saving 41 tons annually. Over 95% of our bottles are now "lightweight," promoting efficient and sustainable shipping.

These bottles also contribute to sustainability, with 40% recycled glass content. We're actively striving to increase this to 70% in the near future, ensuring even greener packaging.

Hunter's Labels hold FSC accreditation. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is a globally recognized forest certification system that guarantees responsible forest management. This accreditation assures that our labels are sourced from responsibly managed forests, promoting sustainability throughout our packaging materials.

Tall lancewood tree in the vineyards
Biodiversity

In 2002, Hunter's Wines pioneered an extensive native garden, a rare oasis of mature dry land habitat on the Wairau Plains.

Today, this garden enriches our Rapaura vineyards, with towering totara, lancewood, and kowhai trees creating a thriving ecosystem.

We're committed to sustainability, using winery wastewater for garden irrigation and introducing exotic trees for shelter and diverse habitats.

In 2021, we uncovered a forgotten wetland on our neighboring vineyard, now a renewed habitat for native plants and birds, marking a milestone in restoration by late 2022.

We have introduced a new method in our vineyard rows to maintain a low grassy sward. This mixed sward approach benefits soil, provides nutrients, and reduces mowing. Our seed mix includes chicory, clovers, lupins, plantains, and rye corn. We use a crimp roller on the rye corn to lower its height and create a 'mat'. Clovers gradually take over, providing nitrogen to our grapevines. This approach enhances sustainability and vineyard health.

Ed, Jane and James walking in the vineyard
Certifications

We are a member of Sustainable WineGrowers New Zealand (SWNZ), Appellation Marlborough Wine and our Hunter’s Sauvignon Blanc is certified.

Our Hunter’s range is vegan accredited by the NZ Vegetarian Society (exclusive of Offshoot and MiruMiru™).

Furthermore, we are members of the Methode Marlborough Society, a community of wineries dedicated to the education and promotion of the quality of Marlborough sparkling wine.

Vineyard posts in the home block
The future

The future continues to look bright. We are in the process of reducing herbicide and pesticide use, we are transitioning to more organic vineyards and reducing our footprint. We are also looking at Carbon Zero certification programmes for bench marking and carbon reduction & offsetting. Watch this space!

Enjoy our place

Our winery is located in Marlborough surrounded by half a hectare of gardens – an outstanding and distinctive setting for the winery.

Visit us