The essence of the vines - The Vignerons de Buzet

Buzet-sur-Baïse
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The essence of the vi ...

Are you on holidays in the Lot-&-Garonne? What about a small gourmet break, near Buzet-sur-Baïse in the Albret? Discover the Coopérative des Vignerons de Buzet, a one of a kind place with wines... which are also one of a kind, but very local! Shop, wine tourism, Cooperative tour, walks in the vines with winegrowers, landscapers, geographers ... A fascinating programme...

Wine from the vine, nature and the winemakers

 

The particularity of the wines of Vignerons de Buzet, besides their remarkable gustatory qualities, is the way they are produced. From the grape variety to the bottle and even to the recycling of the cardboard, everything has been thought in a conscientious and careful manner.

Les vins de Buzet


Let’s enter in the shop. Here you can discover about thirty references, mainly red wine (65%), but also rosé (32%) and white (3%). 188 winemakers work the land in within just a few kilometres radius around the cooperative, which produces thanks to its fabulous juicy grapes, approximately 12 million bottles. With 1,870 ha (4,620 acres) of vines, the Vignerons de Buzet represent 94% of the AOC Buzet.

La boutique à Buzet-sur-Baïse

The shop in Buzet-sur-Baïse


Une large sélection à tous les prix

A large selection at all prices


The staff in the shop will be happy to help you to choose wines that can accommodate your tastes, the dishes you want to cook and special occasions. It should be noted that the Vignerons de Buzet offers great quality for the price. The first prices start at less than 4 euros for a local wine, which is environmentally friendly produced and will give you full satisfaction.

 

A vineyard on the land

 

It cannot be seen in the bottles or during your tasting but since 2007, the Coopérative des Vignerons de Buzet has successfully made a huge shift in the exploitation and the production of wine. Sustainable development is now at the heart of the production of all the bottles sold in the shop: the winemakers are all signatories to a charter which guarantees the continued quality of vines and especially between the vineyard and the ecological values of the company.

Un vignoble nature

A natural vineyard


This strategic policy has been initiated to guaranty a balance at all levels of the wine production. The RSE (Responsabilité Sociétale des Entreprises - the Corporate Societal Responsibility) is a topic that is important to the 95 employees of the Vignerons de Buzet. I realise this while strolling through the offices, the respect of the environment and the "wellbeing of the employees" is a main preoccupation at all levels! Photovoltaic lamps, sport room with coach available for the employees, recycled cardboard furniture, advanced selective waste system in the common areas... The company is labelled AFAQ 26 000 and it is the second French Firm in the agro-food industry, to hold the highest level: exemplary !


La RSE illustrée : tri sélectif et mobilier en carton

Photo: The RSE (Corporate Societal Responsibility) in pictures: selective waste


Réutilisation des boîtes des bouteilles de vin : un nichoir

Reutilisation of the boxes from the wine bottles: a nest box


Let’s start the tour!

 

Follow me on a tour of this very interesting cooperative. Discover all the processes of wine making and decantation of this precious liquid ... Look at the tanks outside and note the flock of solar panels on the roofs... Passing by a tree you can see a nesting box: this is one of the container recycling projects for the customers: nest boxes, games, cutting board, there is no shortage of ideas to make you want keep your packaging and give them a second life!


Les cuves de stockage

The storage vats


Le chai

The wine storehouse


Le chai


After discovering the wine storehouse and going through design rooms decorated with paintings and photos, you arrive at the astonishing natural filtration plant. The effluents generated by the transformation of the grape into wine, are treated on site, in this attractive and surprising space planted with indigenous species, where a fountain oxygenates the water and then redistribute it into the natural environment, perfectly clean!


L'embouteillage

The bottling


La station de filtration, belle et efficace

The filtration plant, beautiful and efficient


La salle de dégustation et son mobilier en carton

The tasting room and its cardboard furniture


Les couloirs très esthétiques

The very attractive halls


A walk in environmentally friendly vineyards

 

Accompanied by Georges, a geographer and Denis, a winemaker, we are heading to discover the vines, and more precisely the Domaine de Gueyze which experiments all the novelties and the most ingenious ideas, in order to transform the cultivation of the vine and modernise it.

Balade à Gueyze

Walk in Gueyze


We stroll between the rows where thousand of animal species are thriving, I walk pass a bat nest box, a bug hotel, an hawk nest box, beehives ... The bees are not necessary for the vines which are not pollinated by the bees, but they are necessary to balance the surrounding eco-system and are a safety check for the products used in the vineyard: if the beehives are in good health, it means that the vines are well looked after! Here there are weeds and cereals planted between the rows, to improve the soil and carbon sequestration. Every two rows, we lay the stems to create a vegetal cover to help the vines keep better ground humidity during heat waves. Between the vineyard plots, some hedges are planted: they act as biodiversity reservoirs and help avoid the drastic erosion of the ground.


Les ruches

The beehives


Le couvert végétal couché à gauche, libre à droite

Laying ground vegetation on the left, free on the right


Denis et les raisins naissants

Denis and the budding grapes


Les haies plantées entre les parcelles

Hedges planted between plots


Les nichoirs à chauves-souris et les hôtels à insectes

Bat nest boxes and bug hotels


Un bel abri tonneau pour les faucons !

A beautiful cask shelter for the hawks!


You got it, the topic is fascinating, I could talk about the Vignerons de Buzet for hours: from the scales installed under the beehives to monitor the health of the bees, to the forbidden artificial fertilisers, or again about the economic and production model which create some interest nationally but also worldwide... The simplest way to appreciate it all, is to come and see for yourself! And if you wish to make a contribution, choose and buy one these sustainable produced wines!


Belle vue !

Beautiful view!


Note: Excessive drinking may damage your health, drink with moderation!

Further information:

 


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