Mission Estate Winery Goes Solar!

Mission Estate Winery boasts a rich history spanning over 170 years, and is the oldest winery in New Zealand. Originally established by the Marist Fathers who planted vines in 1851 and began selling surplus wine in the 1870s, Mission Estate Winery has evolved over time, with significant developments occurring in the mid-1970s when wine production transitioned to a more commercial footing.

Initially operating from Meeanee, the winery made a strategic shift to its current location in Green Meadows to enhance sustainability and business viability. This decision proved insightful, especially during events like cyclone Gabriel, where the new site demonstrated resistance against flooding, showcasing the founders' forward-thinking approach.

Over the past four decades, Mission Estate Winery has been steadfast in its commitment to decarbonizing operations. Through a series of measures including improving energy efficiency, retiring diesel-fired boilers, and implementing innovative strategies to reduce electricity consumption, the winery has continuously evolved.

They've embraced sustainability initiatives, obtaining ISO 14001 accreditation for their environmental management system. Moreover, infrastructure and equipment upgrades such as building the new winery using thermomass construction, recent refrigeration enhancements, switching to electric forklifts, and using a nitrogen generator have significantly reduced energy requirements (~25%), aligning with their goal of virtually eliminating fossil fuel usage in wine production. Their current (reduced) winery annual carbon footprint sits at 25 tonnes!

To further mitigate their carbon footprint, Mission Estate Winery partnered with Freenergy Solar Solutions to install solar panels which will provide up to 35% of their annual electricity needs. By aligning PV output with peak daily electricity demand and operating refrigeration during off-peak hours, they've optimized energy usage, reducing reliance on non-renewable resources and lessening the strain on local infrastructure.

In just the initial months of solar operation, the winery has already saved 5 tonnes of CO2 emissions, showcasing their ongoing dedication to environmental stewardship and sustainable winemaking practices. On top of this, Mission Estate Winery are a loyal Ecotricity customer, topping up their electrical needs with 100% renewable, climate positive electricity.

Ecotricity sources its electricity from 100% sustainable electricity generation. Ecotricity offered the best return on electricity that we export to the grid. We are pleased to support Ecotricity by exporting during times when there is a greater need for sustainable generation – Paul Mooney, Initiator & Architect of the Energy Management Program.

In their relentless pursuit of sustainability, Mission Estate Winery is exploring various avenues to further reduce their environmental impact. Among the possibilities is the transition of their sales representatives' fleets to electric or hybrid vehicles, in line with their commitment to eco-friendly transportation solutions. Additionally, they are considering expanding their solar panel infrastructure, not only within the winery but also on the historic building housing the cellar door, administration, and restaurant. Furthermore, they are embarking on a project to plant indigenous vegetation across 16 hectares of their site, aiming to enhance carbon capture and promote biodiversity. These initiatives exemplify Mission Estate Winery's ongoing dedication to advancing sustainable practices across all facets of their operations.

Mission Estate Winery stands as a beacon of innovation and sustainability within the New Zealand wine industry, continuously striving for a greener, more sustainable future.

Check them out here.

Thermal vs Green energy
Thermal vs Green energy
We compare thermal and renewable energy so you can see how much of a difference it makes. Download the infographic for more information.
Compare your price plan
Compare your price plan
Send us your latest invoice and we can compare your price plan to see if you'd save with Ecotricity.