Māori-Owned Wine Company Committed to Sustainability Produces Premium Wines of Outstanding Quality
Marlborough, New Zealand, August 30, 2022—Kono, a Māori-owned wine company in the Awatere Valley of New Zealand, reports an outstanding 2022 harvest despite early environmental challenges during the growing season. As demand for New Zealand wines skyrocket and summer sales opportunities abound, the success of this year’s vintage is paramount. Although February was cooler and wetter than average in the Awatere Valley, ideal weather over the following months created excellent conditions for a slow ripening season. Kono escaped major disease pressure and produced record-breaking yields.
“While Awatere can often be a challenging environment for grape growing, our hardworking and detail-oriented vineyard team produced excellent quality and perfectly ripened grapes,” says chief winemaker Bruce Taylor. “The 2022 Kono Sauvignon Blanc is on its way to the States as we speak, ready to fill the demand for New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc. 2022 wines from our Tohu Whenua Matua vineyard are maturing in the winery now, and I think they will be the ones to watch in the coming year or so.”
Despite unpredictable growing seasons in the Awatere Valley, every year Kono remains committed to sustainable winegrowing and winemaking. Kono’s winery, which produces both Tohu and Kono Wines, is accredited by Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand (SWNZ), as are the company’s vineyards. SWNZ is managed by New Zealand Winegrowers, the national wine industry body developed to provide a best-practice model for environmental sustainability.
“During the harvest, we strive to work in ways that are gentle on the environment without compromising quality and integrity, and we adhere to the strictest of standards,” comments Anthony Walsh, vineyard manager at Tohu Wines. “We stick to a 500-year plan because we want our children’s children to have the same resources that we did.”
New this year, Kono is working hand-in-hand with Toitū Envirocare, which provides science-based tools, action plans, and evidence of progress in sustainability through carbon emissions management. Kono will receive its Toitū carbonreduce certification by the end of this year, effectively managing and reducing its carbon impacts.
Since its establishment in 1998 as New Zealand’s first Māori-owned wine company, Kono has become known for its premium wines produced from a range of grape varieties. Kono has received numerous accolades for its wines, including its Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Riesling, Pinot Noir, and Méthode Traditionnelle Sparkling Wine. Most recently, the 2021 Tohu Awatere Valley Pinot Gris and 2021 Tohu Awatere Valley Sauvignon Blanc were each awarded 97 points at the Decanter World Wine Awards, both earning Platinum medals. According to Sarah Jane Evans MW, co-chair of the Decanter World Wine Awards, a Platinum medal indicates that the wine is on a “stratospheric level.”
Kono is a Māori-owned, top 100 New Zealand food and drinks company employing over 400 staff, farming over 530 hectares of land and sea, and exporting to over 40 countries. Brands include Tohu Wines, Kono Wines, Hop Federation, Tutū Cider, Kono mussels, and Annies fruit snacks. Kono also grows apples, pears, kiwifruit, and hops. Learn more about Kono at kono.co.nz.