Donnafugata consolidates its sustainability strategy

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A tailor-made reasoning for each of the estates to maximize the use of water where it is necessary to rationalize production in those areas where irrigation has always been entrusted to rain. It is a part of Donnafugata’s environmental sustainability strategy which in its 488 hectares of vineyards finds itself facing the different conditions of the Sicilian continent: in Contessa Entellina in the Palermo area and in Vittoria in the Ragusa area the company has rainwater collection basins, a resource which is used only for emergency irrigation with drip systems along the rows; in Pantelleria there is no irrigation for the water needs of the plants, the humidity of the dew that forms during the night and early morning hours is helpful, acting as a very useful hidden rain: the sandy nature of the soils and the deep root systems of the screws, are able to intercept rain accumulations; There is no irrigation on Etna. The rainfall on Etna is significant and manages to fully guarantee the water needs of the vineyards.

A strategy consolidated over the years that makes the company owned by the Rallo family an example of resilience even in difficult times like the one that Sicily is facing in terms of water resources. The commitment to sustainability is part of the company’s DNA: from good practices in the vineyard to biodiversity, from energy saving to the production of clean energy, from protection of the landscape to support of the territory «A commitment – ​​explains Josè Rallo – which translates now also in the adoption of more sustainable packaging. The choice of cork and bottle is essential to preserve the quality of the wine and safeguard the environment. Last year, for the “Damarino” wine, Donnafugata was the first in the world to adopt the Nomacorc Ocean cork, obtained by recycling plastic collected in coastal areas to protect the marine ecosystem. A cork that will also be used on other wines in the Donnafugata range.”

This year’s novelty is represented by a turning point regarding the bottles: some of the company’s wines are in fact packaged in “Cento per Cento Sicilia” bottles, so called because they are exclusively produced on the island, from recycled glass in Sicily, according to a virtuous circular economy model promoted by the SOStain Foundation and put into practice by the OI glassworks (in the Marsala factory). Furthermore, the Cento per Cento Sicilia bottles have the advantage of being lighter, weighing only 410 grams and thus contributing over time to reducing CO2 emissions and the impact on the environment, deriving from production as well as transport. «Thanks to a strategy always oriented towards quality and innovation – explains Antonio Rallo –, Donnafugata achieved positive economic results, closing 2022 with a turnover of 34.9 million euros. The company’s products (wines and oil) – obtained from the 488 hectares of the Pantelleria, Contessa Entellina, Vittoria and Etna estates – are distributed in Italy and in 70 foreign markets.”

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