Symington Family Estates is the first winery in Portugal to achieve B Corp certification, joining a global movement of companies using business as a force for good.
SAN FRANCISCO, July 22, 2019 – Symington Family Estates, the leading and historic Port producer based in Oporto, Portugal is pleased to announce that the family business has passed the rigorous certification process to become a B Corporation. Symington joins a global community of for-profit companies assessed for the highest standards of social and environmental performance and ethical business practices. B Corp companies are required to legally oblige Directors to include social and environmental factors as equal priorities alongside financial objectives. Fellow B Corps include Ben & Jerry’s, Danone, Etsy, Fetzer Wines, Innocent Drinks, JoJo Maman Bébé, Kickstarter, Natura, Patagonia and Triodos Bank.
Rob Symington, 5th generation family member and Associate Director of Communications and Sustainability said, “We are proud that our existing practices have earned us B Corp status. This is an important step in our ongoing commitment to maximize the positive impact we have as a company. Becoming a B Corp sets us on a journey of further changes to systematically transform our activity and ensure we are responding to the big shared challenges of our time.”
Symington Family Estates recently announced ambitious carbon dioxide emissions reduction goals. Rupert Symington, 4th generation family member and CEO of Symington Family Estates, commented, “Climate change is a very real threat in the Douro Valley. Alongside our efforts to adapt in the vineyard, we are determined to play our part in the shift to a zero-carbon economy. Our first goal is to reduce our emissions by 35% between 2015 and 2025. We have already reduced them by 23% and are working on further reductions. We are committed to Portugal’s national goal of achieving carbon neutrality before 2050.”
Symington also revealed their new sustainability strategy – Mission 2025 – which includes ten flagship goals across renewable energy, solar panels, electric cars, water and electricity efficiency, forest regeneration, low-impact packaging and local community initiatives. Four internal working groups have been formed covering 1) Viticulture & Biodiversity, 2) Water, Energy & Buildings, 3) Packaging & Waste, and 4) Team & Community. See https://www.symington.com/sustainability.
Later this year, work will begin on a new winery in the Douro Valley at the Symington-owned Quinta do Ataíde (the largest organic vineyard in northern Portugal). Opening for the 2021 vintage, it will be the first winery in Portugal to achieve LEED certification (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) with environmental principles influencing all aspects of the design.
About Symington Family Estates The Symingtons of Scottish, English and Portuguese descent have been Port producers in northern Portugal since 1882. For five generations they have combined their passion for producing premium Ports and wines with a deep commitment to the region’s land and people. Today 10 Symingtons work across their four famous Port houses – Graham’s, Cockburn’s, Dow’s and Warre’s – as well as their Douro wine projects – Quinta do Vesuvio, Quinta do Ataíde, Altano and Prats & Symington (of Chryseia fame) – and a new venture, Quinta da Fonte Souto in the Alto Alentejo.
Symington Family Estates is a leading premium Port producer and the family is the leading vineyard owners in the Douro Valley, with 26 Quintas covering 5,535 acres and 2,530 acres of vineyard. Their vineyards are managed under sustainable viticulture practices and 276 acres are organically farmed, the largest area of organic vineyard in the Douro. Symington Family Estates is unique amongst the major Port companies in that each working family member farms their own vineyard, alongside those under the family’s joint company ownership.