Sustainability

Mission is proudly a founding member of Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand

Mission is committed to sustainability through our environmental management and sustainable programmes.  Every aspect of Mission’s production is managed to create wines which minimise the impact on the environment.

To view our Environmental Policy, please click here

Mission is proudly a founding member of Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand

Mission is committed to sustainability through our environmental management and sustainable programmes. Every aspect of Mission’s production is managed to create wines which minimise the impact on the environment.  New projects spanning across the business are continuously being developed and reviewed to ensure we are always looking ahead and continuing to improve our commitment to environmental sustainability. 

The current production facility has been designed to deliver maximum energy and water efficiencies which is a vital element in our ongoing commitment to the environment.

In 2007 our winery underwent a multi-million-dollar upgrade which was designed to maximise energy efficiency. The winery has had ISO14001 accreditation since 1998 which recognises our ongoing commitment to sustainable viticulture and winemaking practices.

Over the past ten years we have introduced advanced science and technology in the winery allowing us to make some of New Zealand’s finest wines in the most energy efficient and environmentally friendly manner.

The Gaia Project

The Gaia Project unites our many environmental practices to preserve our Earth for future generations. We have created The Gaia Project range of wines to tell you about sustainability journey so far, from vineyard to glass.

Our Environmental Committee, led by our CEO and made up of team members from each part of the business, meets regularly to review and measure our progress, implement plans and projects, and set goals. The Gaia Project ensures sustainability and environmental initiatives remain at the forefront of our thinking.

We are committed to protecting our environment by reducing the use of chemicals, energy, water and packaging, and wherever possible reusing and recycling materials and waste.

Founding member of Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand

Mission Estate is proudly a founding member of Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand since 1995 and operates under the Sustainable Winegrowers New Zealand (SWNZ) scorecard system.

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Our vineyards and winery are audited annually to ensure we continue to operate in a sustainable manner. The SWNZ system is interrelated to the ISO 14001 programme that monitors and aims to continually improve our environmental impact.

All of Mission’s fruit supply including company vineyards and contract growers are accredited under the sustainable winegrowing certification system.

For more information visit:  nzwine.com/sustainability

ISO 14001

Mission was one of the first wineries in New Zealand to be certified with ISO 14001 in 1998; it remains one of very few wineries to hold this standard.  It represents a longstanding commitment to minimise the impact of operations on the environment. With over 170 years of history, we learned early how important it is to  look after our land and have taken several steps to ensure we meet the highest standards of environmental protection.

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To achieve this, we implement the ISO 14001: 2015 Environmental Management System, an internationally agreed standard that is present in 171 countries around the world.  As part of the criteria, we monitor all our power and water consumption, as well as the use of all materials which have an environmental impact.

Saving Water

Our aim is to use as little water as possible and to ensure any water used is returned safely to the environment. Our ISO 14001 certification benchmarks us against other wineries of comparable size and Mission is proud to consistently be an industry leader. In 2021 our water efficiency is reported as 63% more efficient than other wineries of comparable size.

Click here to view our water efficiency report

Minimising Energy Usage

Minimising energy usage is another core focus at Mission. Our ISO 14001 certification benchmarks us against other wineries of comparable size and Mission is proud to consistently be an industry leader. In 2021 our energy efficiency is reported as 58% more efficient than other wineries of comparable size.

Click here to view our energy efficiency report

Packaging with a lighter touch

By working closely with environmentally conscious suppliers, our packaging is lighter on Earth with 30% recycled content in the labels, the use of lightweight bottles and up to 73% recycled content in our cartons.

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Cartons: The Gaia Project cartons are made from 73% New Zealand sourced recycled material and are 100% unbleached.  Our carton supplier is ISO 9001, FSC™ (Forest Stewardship Council ™) and PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) certified.  All our cartons are produced to be as lightweight as possible to keep our wine reaching its destination safe and sound.

Bottles: The Gaia Project and Mission Estate wine bottles are 417g, the lightest weight wine bottle available in New Zealand.  A very sustainable packaging option, glass is made from natural ingredients and can be recycled again and again.  Our bottle supplier is committed to increasing the recycled glass content to 70% over time.

Label stock: Our label stock is made from 30% recycled content has been voluntarily FSC™ and Green Seal certified.  FSC™ (Forest Stewardship Council ™) certification assures users that it is sourced from a forest which has been evaluated and certified as being managed according to the correct social, economic and environmental standards.  Green Seal is a global non-profit organisation and verifies producers have met the highest standard of clean.

With many smaller initiatives underway and planned, the next five years of The Gaia Project will see Mission undertaking a major project delivering large scale tree planting of the gullies and hills surrounding its Taradale home and vineyards.  This will allow us to naturally and responsibly offset our own carbon footprint.

As guardians of our place for more than 170 years, Mission will continue to work hard toward delivering positive sustainability initiatives and making some of New Zealand’s finest wines in the most energy efficient and environmentally friendly manner.

Sustainability initiatives in the vineyards

We employ regenerative viticulture techniques and have been a leader in organic vineyard research winning the 2015 Ballance Farm Environmental Awards for Excellent Soil Management.

Our Murdoch vineyard located in the Gimblett Gravels is already 100% certified organic.  While our Mere Road vineyard is currently under conversion.

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Sustainable weed management initiative: a New Zealand Winegrowers initiative to investigate methods for maintaining vine vigour and productivity using under-vine cultivation.  This includes assessing various weed management strategies and producing a best practices manual for weed management on behalf of New Zealand Winegrowers.  In time this initiative should provide options to replace the use of glyphosate-based herbicides.

We are trialling our own organic leaf sprays and also use a Collard Leaf Defoliator which removes dead plant material in the flower bunches, and we open up the canopy later in the growing season which significantly reduces disease, minimising the need for commercial sprays.

Irrigation: soil moisture and rainfall are recorded using sensors and telemetry. When used in conjunction with weather forecasts and visual monitoring, irrigation applications can be determined precisely, saving water.

Water pumps are controlled by variable speed drives to ensure efficient water and power use and actual water use is recorded for each vineyard, providing for continual learning and improved water management techniques.

Steps Mission has proudly taken over 40 years

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2021

Launch of The Gaia Project. The Gaia Project unites our many environmental practices to preserve our Earth for future generations.  We have created The Gaia Project range of wines to tell you about sustainability journey so far, from vineyard to glass.

2020

Achievement of plan: installation of new bottling line to bring all bottling onto a single site; a new warehouse to bring all warehousing and distribution on to the one site.

2017

Size of production volume doubles at Mission. Goal is to bring all production, bottling and distribution onto present winery site to lower the carbon footprint.

2009

Comprehensive study to investigate lowering electricity use; fruits have seen installation of inverter control on the refrigeration system, installation of fans using cool night-time air to cool winery naturally.

2008

First electric forklift purchased. Presently 75% of our forklift fleet is electric.

2007

Nitrogen generator installed to lower CO2 usage and therefore winery carbon footprint.

2005

Began rebuilding the winery with an energy efficient design with thermomass construction.

2001

Began monitoring and measuring energy, packaging and water use with the aim of continuous improvement and reduction.

1998

Mission establishes an environmental management system and is audited to the ISO 14001 standard. We are successful in achieving ISO 14001 – the first winery to achieve this in New Zealand.

1995

Boiler decommissioned; all future energy consumption to be electric lowering the carbon footprint with the exception of one LPG forklift.  Mission is one of the founding members of Sustainable Winegrowers New Zealand.

1984

Elimination of passive electricity consumption of our transformers.

1981

A new wastewater system was installed to lower the environmental impact of our wastewater.