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DO Cava Shifts to Organic Rules

An execpt from an article that appeared in DrinksBusiness. See full article here.


Reserva Cava wines will have to be organic under new production rules proposed by the Cava DO.


The move is part of the biggest shake-up of regulatory board rules since the Cava DO’s creation 30 years ago.


The vast majority (95%) of Cava is made in Catalonia, the region of Spain, which is home to the highest number of organic wine producers. Newly released government figures show that the number of organic wine producers in Catalonia increased by 17.5% to 241 in 2018 up from 205 in 2017.


This week Javier Pagés, chairman of the Cava DO, exclusively revealed to the drinks business a number of key rule changes envisaged in its segmentation and zoning plan. Producers making Reserva and Gran Reserva wines and those aged longer than these wines would be obliged to make organic wines, he said.


The minimum ageing period for Reserva Cava will increase from 15 to 18 months.

Aged Cava will have to be from vines which are at least 10 years old. The tirage date of these wines will have start no earlier than 1 January each year. “We are enhancing quality and the complexity of Cava wines,” Pagés said. “The shift in quality is the key issue,” he said.


He added that export markets were increasingly demanding organic wines. Pagés said Cava Reserva wines have not had sufficient visibility in exports markets. Young Cava wines will not be subject to organic rules of production. He did not comment on why young Cava wines would be exempt from the organic rule.


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The Cava Do is expected to adopt the new segmentation and zoning rules by the end of this year.


It is also is planning a major PR campaign to promote the rule changes for Cava in 2021. The campaign, which Pagés said is expected to lead to a five-fold increase in promotional expenditure, will focus food and Cava pairings.


“It is about increasing desire for Cava,” he said.

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