Pernod Ricard Winemakers has become the first large wine company in Australia to achieve 100 per cent renewable electricity. The commitment was achieved ahead of schedule and will ensure that all wines from the iconic Australian wine brands Jacob’s Creek, St Hugo and Wyndham Estate will be produced using electricity from renewable sources.
All of Pernod Ricard Winemakers’ Australian sites are now using renewable electricity thanks to the completion of Australia’s largest combined winery solar installation and a 10-year agreement to source renewable electricity.
Energy company AGL has installed more than 10,300 solar panels across the company’s two Barossa Valley wineries, with a predicted annual generation of 4,000 megawatt-hours, enough to power the equivalent of nearly 800 South Australian homes.
Pernod Ricard Winemakers has also become the first wine company in South Australia to be connected to both offsite wind and solar farms as a result of a landmark 10-year Virtual Generation Agreement (VGA) with wholesale electricity retailer Flow Power. The agreement means that the remainder of the business’ annual electricity requirements will be met by solar and wind.
Sustainability and responsibility is an important part of Pernod Ricard’s global strategy, with the group recently launching its 2030 sustainability and responsibility roadmap, which sets out eight ambitious goals aligned to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Brett McKinnon, Pernod Ricard Winemakers’ Chief Operations Officer, said that the completion of the project demonstrates Pernod Ricard Winemakers’ commitment to be a leader in sustainability and responsibility.
“Pernod Ricard Winemakers is excited to be the first large wine company in Australia to produce wine using electricity sourced entirely from renewable sources, well ahead of our initial goal and other large wine companies.
“Being sustainable and responsible is an important part of our business, particularly as producers of wine – a product that takes its character from the land where it was grown. We want to minimise our impact on the communities where we operate, responding to the local climate and preserving the environment for future generations to come.
“Our journey began in 2016 with a pilot solar installation after we recognised that we had a huge opportunity across our wineries to harness the power of the sun through solar panels. Three years later, we are exceptionally proud to say that we are now sourcing all electricity from renewable sources, in alignment with our global ambition,” he said.
Pernod Ricard is the only wine and spirits company globally to be recognised by the United Nations as a Global Compact Lead, demonstrating an ongoing commitment to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and its Ten Principles for responsible business.