Certified Sustainable Business: Page Springs Cellars

May 2019—Page Springs Cellars has long been known as a leading winery in environmental practices. They got certified in 2018. All their vineyards are no-till, meaning they don’t disturb the soil, which can release carbon. Instead they mow native grasses and other green cover crops. Most of the plant debris is composted and put back into the vineyard. Because PSC wants their wine to reflect the terroir, not the barrel, they can reuse their ‘neutral’ barrels, since they don’t impart flavor, for up to 20 years. They are experimenting with adding wood slats (called staves) from native trees into the barrels when they want some woody notes.

Solar panels over the parking area currently produce 75-85 percent of their electricity and they are planning to get to 100 percent soon by adding more panels over their tasting room. They minimize transportation by only selling in Arizona and mostly through their own tasting rooms.

The winery also has remarkable employment practices. All full-time employees earn a living wage. They are encouraged to develop their interests, and the team uses a peer review process where co-workers can give one another and their managers useful feedback.

Recently PSC added an artificial wetland to replace the inadequate septic system. Wastewater veteran and Groundskeeper, Rick Marcotte (left), developed the system. “All black and graywater (from toilets, sinks, and processing the wine) now runs through a series of biological filters and settling tanks.” At the end, the water is passed through an artificial wetland of local wetland plants. “Guess what the containers are,” Luke Bernard (right), Brand Manager, asked. “Cruise missile covers!”

Make wine, not war.