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Wine retailers show bottle to make packaging lighter

Wine bottles are to become nearly 25% lighter after leading retailers and wine merchants committed to a new accord that will reduce the sector’s greenhouse gas emissions.

Led by the Sustainable Wine Roundtable (SWR), wine retailers from around the world including Laithwaites, Lidl GB, Waitrose and The Wine Society, have agreed to reduce the average weight of 750ml still wine bottles in their ranges from 550g to less than 420g by the end of 2026.

The 25% drop in bottle weight will deliver carbon savings of more than 23 million kilos per year. 
There will also be cost savings, in terms of transport and raw materials, but also in relation to looming extended producer responsibility fees for packaging.

Retailers already signed up to the accord collectively sell around 250 million bottles of wine a year.

Research indicates that the glass bottle contributes between a third and a half of wine’s total greenhouse gas emissions. The emissions come both from the significant amounts of energy required to make glass and transport of the products. “I’ve been talking about this for so long,” said wine journalist Jancis Robinson. “Lighter bottles are an easy win for the wine sector to reduce its carbon emissions.”

The perception that consumers associate heavy glass bottles with higher wine quality has also been overstated, according to research conducted by SWR. “[…] there are no convincing arguments against the use of light weight bottles for wine,” notes a research paperthat accompanies the new agreement.