Q&A with Kalleske Wines, winner of the 2015 ‘Banksia Gold Award’ and 2015 ‘Small to Medium Business Sustainability Leadership Award’
We sat down with Troy Kalleske, Winemaker and Co-Owner of Kalleske Wines on the back of the 2016 Banksia Awards launch to talk about some of the initiatives that are driving best practice within the business.
Kalleske won the 2015 Banksia Award for the its energy and water efficiency work. Can you describe how you reduced water use on site?
At Kalleske we use only 53% of the benchmark industry water figure. The Kalleske winery uses an average of 1L of water per litre of wine made compared to the average Australian non-bottling winery using 1.9L. We reduced water use by:
– Using it wisely.
– Using pressure (pressure cleaners) instead of volume.
– Dry cleaning (broom and shovel) wherever possible.
– When emptying must lines, we empty into slotted bin to capture berries/solids, hence less washdown/cleanup.
– Tanks are assessed and only cleaned as required, i.e. not unnecessarily spray-balled and we use a single-step detergent.
What about your energy efficiency work. Can you describe your process and what you achieved?
With a 15kW solar array, the winery is a net exporter of electricity and uses 230,000 kWh less of electricity than the average Australian winery its size. Refrigeration is the largest consumer of electricity in wineries (50-70%). We achieved efficient cooling by:
– Using evaporative cooling instead of refrigeration and harnessing the “free” power of evaporation.
– Using product heat exchange. Whereby, we harvest the ‘cold’ from freshly crushed grapes to chill active warm fermentations.
– Implementing double-skin insulation for barrel storage and bulk wine tank storage to maintain cool cellar temperature with no additional cooling.
Why did you choose to make your company a sustainability ambassador?
Our family has operated a sustainable and certified organic farming business for decades so when my brother and I started our wine company it wasn’t really a choice as such but virtually in our DNA and simply logical to be sustainable with our winery. And sustainability makes economic sense too. We believe in the triple bottom line of economic, social and environmental sustainability and we are pleased to be ambassadors of this and share our knowledge and experience with others. We believe in looking after and enhancing the environment for future generations.
Do customers seek out organic certified wines? If so, why?
Yes, an increasing number of customers are seeking out certified organic wines. Today, people are more aware of what they are putting in their bodies as well as buying ethical and sustainable environmentally friendly produce. Certified organic gives them the assurance that the wine will not contain pesticide residues. They also know they are doing good for the environment by purchasing certified organic. As well as that organic wines can potentially be of more character, interest and of higher quality than conventional wines.
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