Sustainability at Lympstone Manor Estate

By Marc Millon – Wine, Food and Travel Writer.

Sustainability in winegrowing and winemaking can mean many things. It is more than just a production process or processes, and extends from how grapes are cultivated through to every stage of wine production, and even beyond to adopting social responsibility for the environment and communities surrounding the vineyard, as well as for our workforce.

While organic and biodynamic methods of viticulture prohibit the use of chemical herbicides, pesticides, and fertilisers, seeking to control the problems that these practises address can be more than challenging to producers in cool or humid climates. Our East Devon climate, for example, does not give us the option of adopting these methods of viticulture, but even so, we still feel an immense responsibility to take care of our environment.

We have non-cultivated vineyard boundaries which are not only aesthetically pleasing, they help to protect and encourage the wildlife habitats within those areas as well as the hedgerows. Biodiversity within the local environment is extremely important, enhancing the natural ecosystems and providing habitats for a wide variety of animals and plants which in turn assist in the the management of pests and diseases within the proximity of the vineyard. Over this past winter, we have kept a flock of Poll Dorset sheep in the vineyard. They have been great custodians of the vineyard in the colder months, conscientiously eating the grass between the rows of vines while fertilising the ground naturally in the process, a regenerative form of farming that has been very successful.

Though we can’t avoid the necessity to utilise products to control disease, we are confident that we now have in place a sophisticated spray and disease management program linked to a weather station and supplemented by our own close observation day by day. By this vital and careful vine monitoring throughout the growing season, we hope to be able to control disease as effectively and minimally as possible to keep the vines in good health while not adversely impacting on the vineyard and surrounding community.

Sustainable working practices within all departments are encouraged at Lympstone Manor and the team is tasked with thinking responsibly to take ownership in order to reduce wastage wherever possible, not only to reduce costs but also to achieve a more positive environmental outlook.

Lyme Bay Winery, our partner in the winemaking process, is one of the very few English wineries to have achieved accreditation for manufacturing quality from the British Retail Consortium, ensuring that all our wines are crafted to the highest standards.

Visit our wine shop to find out more about our estate wines and check out our wine events at Lympstone Manor including wine dinners in the Pool House, vineyard tours with lunch, and more on the Lympstone Manor Events web page.