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San Pedro to launch new wine brand to protect Patagonian glaciers

Chile’s Viña San Pedro is set to launch a new sustainable, organic wine brand called South Cause which will raise funds to support Glaciares Chilenos, an NGO that aims to conserve Patagonian glaciers.

San Pedro, which is part of the VSPT group, is hoping to launch the new wine brand in Europe, North America and north Asia by the end of this year.

Called South Cause, it comprises four different wines – a Cabernet Sauvignon, a red blend, a Sauvignon Blanc and a rosé – and is targeted towards millennials and the younger generation of wine drinkers.
Rodrigo Romero, vice-president of global marketing for VSPT, described the new wine label as an “activist brand”.

He told the drinks business: “At VSPT, we’ve had a true commitment to sustainability for many years. We were thinking about our next steps and what else we could do to further our mission.

“So far most of the things we have done have been in-house. We heard about Glaciares Chilenos and thought maybe we could have a role in this. And what better way to do it than create a new brand that stands for this sentiment. It proves it’s not an after-thought. It’s a range of quality wines that also embrace the cause.”

The wines, which are certified organic and vegan, will be released in eco-friendly packaging, which is either made from recycled materials or is itself recyclable.

VSPT has recently pledged to reduce the quantity and weight of its bottles and packaging so that 100% are separable, reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2030.

Sales of South Cause wines, which will be priced between US$12-$15 per bottle, depending on the market, will directly benefit Glaciares Chilenos.

VSPT has signed an agreement with the NGO which will see it give the organisation a set lump sum each year to fund its scientific research and educational campaigns. The NGO will also receive a variable amount of money each year, based on sales of the wine.

Glaciers act as climate regulators, reflecting between 45% and 80% of the sun’s light, helping to cool the earth’s temperature. Glacier melt causes sea levels to rise, leading to flooding and the loss of land. In the last six years, Chile’s glaciers have decreased by 8%, the equivalent of 1,800 Olympic-sized pools.

Glaciares Chilenos is dedicated to the preservation of Chile’s Patagonian ice fields, which represent 82% of the glaciers found in South America. The issue is particularly pressing given that 70% of the Chilean population is supplied with water originating from mountainous areas and the glacier refill zone.

South Cause will be primarily targeted at the retail and e-commerce sectors. The wine labels and accompanying websites will display more information about Glaciares Chilenos’ educational campaigns as well as a link to donate funds directly to the NGO.

“We hope it’s a long-term agreement with Glaciares Chilenos,” Romero said. “They’re a new organisation and need support, and if we can bring more people to the part, that will really help.”

The Cabernet Sauvignon and the grapes used in the red blend are sourced from Maipo, while the Sauvignon Blanc and rosé use grapes from Casablanca.

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