Austrians love nature and, as a result, they treat it with the greatest of respect. Environmental protection, water purity, healthy and GMO-free food, biodiversity and the efficient use of energy and materials are all high on the agenda in this country.
It should come as no surprise, therefore, that Austria is the world leader in organic agriculture: around 27% of agricultural land and 15% of all vineyards are already managed according to organic agricultural guidelines*, while a fifth of the area under vine is managed using biodynamic agricultural practices**. Additionally, circa 20% of all vineyards are farmed according to the certification “Sustainable Austria”***. And last but not least, the majority of grapes are still harvested by hand. Despite this – or, indeed, because of this – the wine industry has developed with great dynamism in recent times. The number of internationally competitive wine producers is growing steadily, and new names are gaining recognition beyond Austria’s borders every year. The growth curve of export revenues is similar to those of the most successful New World wine-producing countries.
* Source: Ministry for Agriculture, Regions and Tourism, March 2022
** Source: respekt-BIODYN, as of February 2022 and Demeter, as of March 2022
*** Source: Austrian Winegrowers’ Association, qualifying date: 15 October 2022
The "Sustainable Austria" certification programme regulates the use of the term "sustainability" in Austrian winemaking.
Wines made organically or biodynamically can be identified by the green EU organic logo with the code number of the certification body.