As demand for wine made with animal-friendly products grows, Enartis’ new pure allergen-free, pea protein fining agent – Plantis AF (and AF-L liquid form) – allows winemakers to achieve excellent results while being sustainable and environmentally mindful.
It’s not just die-hard vegans who only buy vegan-friendly wines. The widespread adoption of veganism is, for many, a way of life.
Consumers are becoming increasingly vocal in questioning wineries’ decision to use animal-based products in their wine.
Traditionally, egg white and certain fish products were used as fining agents to improve wine clarity and get rid of the cloudiness in wines to leave a clear, polished drink.
Other benefits include improved wine filterability and stability and removing compounds that are dangerous for human health.
For many wineries, becoming 100% vegan in the winemaking process posed risky challenges. However, Enartis, a manufacturer of oenological solutions, viewed this shift in mindset as an opportunity and a necessary change.
Enartis SA general manager Lida Malandra says they responded to an increased awareness of ethical and sustainable practices in the wine industry.
“We’re committed to providing wineries and producers with the products consumers demand while offering an opportunity to reinvest their winemaking practices,” she says.
Plantis-AF-L: Liquid gold
This pure pea protein in liquid solution – stabilised with SO2 – improves juice and wine clarity while producing a small volume of lees.
Plantis AF increases wine’s resistance to oxidation by removing iron, catechins and short chain-length polyphenols. What’s more, Plantis AF-L – the liquid form – makes the process fast and easy. The liquid form can be added to dosing pumps.
Reon Richter, winemaker at Darling Cellars, says he and his team decided to give the Plantis AF-L a try, and the results exceeded their expectations.
“The liquid AF has made our job in the cellar a lot easier,” he says. “It’s ready to use and a lot more accurate when applying the correct dosage.”
With the clock often against winemakers during the harvest and pressing season, Reon says Plantis AF-L saves him and his team considerable time during the fining process.
“Because the product is already dissolved and in liquid form, it allows us to see positive results quicker in the juice after flotation.”
Reon prefers the liquid fining agent, simply because he feels the powdered fining products takes longer to dissolve in the tank. “If you don’t mix the powder thoroughly, it creates clots, making it difficult to absorb through the flotation machine.”
“The powdered product can leave a mess behind,” he adds. “But the liquid is easy to measure and to use. While the powder does the job adequately, the liquid format is just way more convenient to work with.”
Plantis AF: Peas in a pod
According to Lida, Plantis AF’s pea protein has proven to perform better than potato protein in reducing the wine colour absorbance at 420 nm.
To achieve significant reduction, she recommends adding at least 40 ml/hL. “Of course, it’s always recommended to perform a trial with different dosages and check the sensory impact.”
What’s more, Plantis AF-L helps reduce iron content in the wine. “Using pea protein reduces around 25% more iron content compared to using potato protein.”
Jacques Theron, senior winemaker at Riebeek Valley Wine Co. says the big producer cellar has been using Enartis’ Plantis AF since last year.
Having used animal-based fining agents in the past, Jacques approached the plant-based product with a measure of skepticism. “With animal-based fining agents we managed between 3-8% lees after flotation. I worried the results would be different with plant-based agents.”
It was a big step for Jacques and his team to go 100% vegan, but after taking the plunge and using Plantis AF, Jacques was pleased with the results.
“After the first flotation, I noticed the wine’s colour intensity was excellent and my lees was still within the norm of 4 to 8%.
He says the juices appeared clearer than ever, and the lees was looking a lot better compared to the animal-based gelatin products they were using.
Jacques says it gave him the freedom to even cut some of the lees after filtration to blend back with certain cultivars.
“By using these products, you can help make your wine production sustainable while respecting the environment,” says Lida.
“You’ll also guarantee your customers full transparency with wines made with 100% additives and raw materials of vegetable origin and certified plant-based and allergen-free.”
For years, Enartis has been committed to sustainable, organic and environmentally friendly winemaking with vegan clarification products based on vegetable protein.
These products improve clarity and organoleptic characteristics while respecting wine structure. Here are some other plant-based and allergen-free fining agents from Enartis.
Click here to view the technical data sheets of Enartis’ Plantis AF and AF-L fining agent products.
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