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2B FermControl briefing: The case for naturally derived fermentation products

By , 8 September 2022

The Môreson Chardonnay maturation room. Pictured is a terracotta amphora filled with Chardonnay skins and topped with olive oil.  In the background, a concrete Nomblot egg and 300L French oak barrels.

Sustainable wine production has increased worldwide alongside rising consumer awareness and their demand for organic and minimalistic wines. There are additional reasons why leading international wineries have chosen to follow natural principles in winemaking: The added value for their wines by using natural, certified organic supplements providing more native nutrient and enzymatic retention; a contribution to environmental protection by less pollution (e.g. microplastic-free); a higher quality end-product that meets customer needs and expectations (vegan, allergen-free, natural) and also ethical reasons, such as responsible farming practices.

What role do organic active yeasts and organic yeast products play here, and what advantages do they offer for winemakers? Today, organic products do not merely belong to a niche market but they are synonymous with quality in production and practices. Well-known wineries all over the world are looking for organic solutions as they no longer want to use synthetic fungicides and herbicides in the vineyard. This extends to the use of organic solutions during winemaking, where these wineries also wish to omit the use of conventional, synthetic products. Another trend in the wine industry is the use of less additives, and reduced interventions, contributing to the organic approach in winemaking.

It is to be expected that transparency and accountability are going to become more important in wine as consumer expectations evolve. Therefore it could be an advantage for winemakers to guarantee their customers full transparency with premium wine made with 100 % additives and raw materials of organic certified origin and allergen-free.

Minimal Intervention in Winemaking

Since inception, 2B FermControl South Africa’s mission is to help wine producers preserve and emphasize the intrinsic sensory properties of their grape varieties and the specific characteristics of their terroir. It achieves this through reduced use of natural additives and targeted harnessing of nature’s own tools.

As befits the company motto: “LESS IS MORE”, conventional additives can be reduced or eliminated by using organic active yeasts or other solutions in pure, natural form. This also results in less environmental pollution, by using eco-friendly alternatives for PVPP and microplastics. Additionally, the nutrients and yeasts are free of petrochemical elements or preservatives. Avoidance of metabolic engineering and hybridization techniques are also promoted.

This “minimal intervention” approach has gained broad acceptance by well-known international wine estates, that are following the principles of biological vinification, both for ethical and premium quality reasons.

Beyond Just Quality – Why Production Methods Matter

As the wine industry grapples with the changing climate, which is putting more stress on our vineyards, wineries are taking a closer look at their sustainability measures and where they can make impacts on reduction, recycling and rethinking what has been the status quo. There is abundant proof that making the right decision environmentally makes also good business sense because of the direct correlation to wine quality.  

To gain a better understanding regarding the differences in production processes, the illustration below gives winemakers (and wine consumers) the opportunity to take a look behind the scenes of conventional yeast production versus real organic yeast production.

For certified organic yeast production, only substrates from certified organic viticulture can be used. The absence of chemical stress and the cool drying process are gentler towards the yeast and its enzymatic functions. This results in multiple functional advantages for any winemaker using organic yeasts, as well as for the consumer, enjoying a pure and delicious product of high quality.

You Have The Choice

There are endless decisions to be made in winemaking to gain delicious wine. Which yeast, which nutrient, which fermentation style, which protocol – that all comes down to the decision of each individual winemaker. Sustainability plays a role too and knowing more about product origins gives the power and tools to make decisions that are right for each person’s wines and environmental ethos – and to satisfy your customers’ necessities.


The producer of the wine judged Best Overall in this year’s Prescient Chardonnay Report wins a 2BFermControl organic fermentation kit worth approximately R10 500.

The producer of the wine judged Best Overall in this year’s Prescient Cabernet Sauvignon Report wins a 2BFermControl organic fermentation kit worth approximately R11 000.

Find out more

For all information around sustainable and minimal intervention winemaking, please contact Clayton Reabow at 2B FermControl South Africa: clayton@2bfermcontrol.com


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