Today I had the pleasure of attending the Oregon Wine Symposium in the beautiful city of Eugene. During my time there I got to meet and speak with a number of people from all aspects of the wine industry. Mostly I spent my time speaking with the representatives of the cork companies. The “cork dork” in me can’t stop talking about this amazing tree and how important it is. I attended a seminar on closures, quite interesting. There were three speakers talking about different closure methods. The speaker representing screwcaps made a statement concerning 100% recyclability, as there was a question and answer period; I took an opportunity to ask some questions. My first question was concerning screwcaps and recycling, noting that they are not currently being recycled here in the US; I asked how can this benefit be made to customers, if in fact it’s not true? My answer was that screwcaps are recycled in Europe and that the representative was “not aware” that the US is not currently recycling them. I found that interesting, as he is selling to an American audience.
My second question concerned a 2007 Transnational, scientific study concerning endocrine disruptor’s found in wines closed with screwcaps. Endocrine disruptor’s are believed to be the major cause of breast and colon cancer in the western hemisphere. Again his answer was, “I’m not aware of that study”.
The reason I wanted to write about this experience was because of what occurred an hour later. Standing in the trade area, I was approached by a couple who introduced themselves, told me they owned a vineyard/winery and thanked me for my questions at the seminar. Based upon my questions and the subsequent non-answers, they had made the decision not to use screwcaps and close their wines with natural cork. Some days it just doesn’t’t get any better! Chalk one up for the Montados.