Biodynamic wine is any wine that has been produced using biodynamic farming methods.
Biodynamics is a spiritual, ethical and ecological approach to agriculture, food production and nutrition. Biodynamics was first developed in the early 1920s based on the spiritual insights and practical suggestions of the Austrian writer, educator and social activist Dr Rudolf Steiner (1861–1925). (Biodynamic Association 2015). As with organic farming, no synthetic chemicals are used in biodynamic farming. You can think of biodynamic farming as organic farming but taken to the next level.
Biodynamic farmers strive to create a diversified, balanced farm ecosystem that generates health and fertility as much as possible from within the farm itself. Biodynamic preparations made from fermented manure, minerals and herbs are used to help restore and harmonize the vital life forces of the farm and to enhance the nutrition, quality and flavour of the food being raised. Biodynamic practitioners also recognize and strive to work in cooperation with the subtle influences of the wider cosmos on soil, plant and animal health. (Biodynamic Association 2015). Some, but not all, biodynamic farms use astrological calendars and other cosmic indicators to determine the timing of farm activities such as planting and harvesting. (eXtension 2011).
There is science behind biodynamics. Farmers typically undertake on-farm experimentation and diligent record keeping. Using “negative control,” areas that receive no treatment or only water spray and “positive control” areas for methods. (eXtension 2011).
The primary modes of operation for biodynamic preparations are nutrient addition (primarily micronutrient), microbial inoculation, plant immunity stimulation, plant hormones, and microbial signalling. (eXtension 2011).
Biodynamics is increasingly popular in Australia and there are a number of wineries that are certified biodynamic including some of the very best – Grosset, Frankland Estate, Cullen and Stefano Lubiana to name a few. As with organic viticulture, biodynamic viticulture inevitability produces more flavoursome fruit and better quality wine; and this is making the wine industry stand up and take notice.
At The Organic Wine Cellar we have an amazing array of premium organic and biodynamic wines. You can shop by biodynamic here
Biodynamic Association 2015, ‘What is biodynamics?’ <https://www.biodynamics.com/what-is-biodynamics>, viewed 14 February 2015.
eXtension 2011, ‘The Science Behind Biodynamics’ <http://www.extension.org/pages/28756/the-science-behind-biodynamics#.VJRMjV4CA>, viewed 14 February 2015.
First published 17/2/2015