Nov 11, 2011
Wine purification technology lowers chemicals requirementBack
SECURITY|Filtration|Johan Jordaan|Security|SurePure|Security|Energy|Harmful Chemical Intervention|Less Chemical Intervention|Light Energy|Security|Ultraviolet Light Energy|Jeff Grier|Jordaan|Security|Steve Miller
© Reuse this
Following government’s approval of the use of ultraviolet light energy for liquid purification in oenological practices, acceptance of turbid liquid photopurification company SurePure’s technology has gained momentum among local winemakers.
SurePure marketing executive Steve Miller says the approved SurePure photo- purification method uses light energy to disinfect wine.
The technology limits harmful chemical intervention, reducing the need to add sulphur and other disinfectant additives.
Miller explains that the technology can replace, or act as an adjunct to, many other traditional wine filtration processes.
“It can replace sterile filtration, which strips colour and flavour from wine. Photo- purification also requires less chemical intervention, either with sulphur or other substances such as dimethyldicarbonate or pimaricin, which has now been banned in the South African wine industry,” he says.
In addition, the technology has a positive impact on the environment and on consumers’ wellbeing, reports the company.
Miller notes that the focus on reducing sulphur content also ensures a more sustainable and less environment-invasive approach to winemaking.
Positive Industry Feedback
Spier Wines winemaker Johan Jordaan says he initially used the technology to treat wines that suffered from stuck fermentations prior to restarting them.
“This wine was passed through the SurePure unit once, without being filtered. The volatile acidity of this wine was stable and after the successful referment, the wine had no sluggish or stuck ferment odours. I have also used it to stop the fermentation of a rosé to have a higher residual sugar content,” he says.
Jordaan believes that there is a place for the SurePure technology in the market and that good wines with low sulphur can be produced, provided that the fundamental rules of chemistry are followed to preserve them.
“I think that white wines with a low sulphur content should be drunk very young or sealed with a screw cap to preserve the freshness, whereas the red wines can be stored for longer, provided that you have ample extract in the form of tannin to help preserve the wine against oxidation,” says Jordaan.
To prove his theory, Jordaan bottled a Merlot wine from the 2009 vintage, and closed it with a screw cap as a sample.
He did not add sulphur, acid, tannin or any other substances to the wine before or after fermentation.
“The sample stood in my office for two years. I opened the wine prior to the 2011 harvest to taste it. The wine was fresh and clean – no oxidation, no off flavours and no browning of colour.
“I expected oxidation, at least. This proves the point of low, or even no, sulphur. The fact that the wine passed through the SurePure unit only once makes it even more interesting. I did not do chemical- or micro-analyses on the wine, but organoleptically, it was fine, even after two years on a desk in an office,” he says.
Further, Steenberg Vineyards also used the technology to limit the amount of sulphur needed to treat its wines.
“We treated a batch of Merlot in 2009. No sulphur was added to the grapes or to the wine, and the wine showed more colour and more pronounced fruit in its youth. The wine showed that different flavour compounds, with fresh fruit flavours, could be a good blending component. After 12 months’ ageing in barrels, the wine showed slightly more oxidation characters than the ones with sulphur added, but still with good freshness,” Steenberg Vineyards winemaker JD Pretorius explains.
Meanwhile, Villiera Wines cellarmaster Jeff Grier used the SurePure process on a sulphur-free base wine.
Grier adds that Villiera Wines is exploring some other opportunities this year and intends to use SurePure for additional microbiological security.
SurePure expects an increasing number of vineyards to adopt the technology in the near future. “A growing consumer preference for fresher wines, combined with wine- makers’ focus on a less invasive approach to winemaking, and increasingly draconian additive legislation, makes SurePure a sure bet for the future,” says Miller.
Edited by: Chanel de Bruyn© Reuse this Comment Guidelines (150 word limit)
Other Brewery and Winery News
Updated 2 hours 9 minutes ago Construction on the bus rapid transport stations for Phase 1A of the Rustenburg Rapid Transport (RRT) project was likely to start before the end of the year, with the construction tenders currently being adjudicated, RRT said on Tuesday. Phase 1A of this four-phase...
Updated 2 hours 44 minutes ago Hundreds of innovators and entrepreneurs have gathered in Cape Town to discuss how to support more innovation in South Africa in a bid to drive the economy forward. Venture capitalists, dealmakers, entrepreneurs and academics have been mingling at the South African...
Updated 2 hours 50 minutes ago South African business leaders were more likely than their global counterparts to encourage creative behaviours and “disruptive processes” to drive innovation, the South African results of the GE Global Innovation Barometer, released on Tuesday, have shown. The 2014...
Recent Research Reports
Road and Rail 2014: A review of South Africa's road and rail infrastructure (PDF report)
Creamer Media’s Road and Rail 2014 report examines South Africa’s road and rail transport system, with particular focus on the size and state of the country’s road and rail network, the funding and maintenance of these respective networks, and the push to move road...
Real Economy Year Book 2014 (PDF Report)
This edition drills down into the performance and outlook for a variety of sectors, including automotive, construction, electricity, transport, steel, water, coal, gold, iron-ore and platinum.
Real Economy Insight: Automotive 2014 (PDF Report)
This four-page brief covers key developments in the automotive industry over the past 12 months, including an overview of South Africa’s automotive market, trade figures, production and the policies influencing the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Construction 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the construction industry over the past 12 months. It provides an overview of the sector and includes details of employment in the sector, infrastructure and municipal spending, as well as insight into companies’...
Real Economy Insight: Electricity 2014 (PDF Report)
This five-page brief covers key developments in the electricity industry over the past 12 months, including details of State-owned power utility Eskom’s generation activities, funding and tariffs, independent power producers and prospects for the sector.
Real Economy Insight: Road and Rail 2014 (PDF Report)
This six-page brief covers key developments in the road and rail industries over the past 12 months, including details of South Africa’s road and rail network and prospects for both sectors.
This Week's Magazine
The board of UD Trucks Southern Africa (UDTSA) has announced the resignation of MD Jacques Carelse. Long-time UD employee, corporate planning and marketing GM, Rory Schulz, has been appointed as acting MD while the process started to appoint a new MD. The Japanese...
There is a need to start planning another pumped storage scheme in South Africa. Much work has already been done at a site in the Limpopo province and the project was very close to being put out to tender at one stage. In 2008/9 the National Energy Regulator of South...
The Coega Development Corporation (CDC) is preparing to leverage its strategic coastal position to develop the Eastern Cape economy through proposed aquaculture development zones (ADZs), with a proposed R2-billion project aiming to contribute $278-million to the...
Completion of the ongoing construction of the 102 km Zomba–Jali–Phalombe–Chitakale road, in southern Malawi, has been extended from June to December 15 because of persistent rains and difficulties in paying the contractor. The project is being undertaken by Kuwait's...
The Malawi government has awarded South African firm Fischer Consortium the contract to upgrade the Malawi Road Traffic Information System. The Directorate of Road Traffic and Safety Services at Malawi's Ministry of Transport and Public Works says Fischer...
Next ArticleWine tank manufacturer reports healthy order book