Ten cooperatives from Württemberg presented the first 0.75l returnable bottle for wine at ProWein. It can be returned to the machine in the supermarket. The new bottles are to be filled for the first time as early as this year.
In Germany, more than one billion wine bottles are bought every year, estimates the German Wine Institute (DWI). Most of them are only used once and end up - hopefully - in waste glass, are melted down and made into bottles again. Yet, according to the DWI, the bottle alone accounts for around 45 percent of the CO2 footprint in wine production. According to the Federal Environment Agency, returnable glass bottles can be refilled up to 50 times. This saves a lot of energy and resources compared to one-way bottles. Nevertheless, until now there have been hardly any possibilities to reuse wine bottles without producing new ones. The main reason is the almost unmanageable variety of shapes: "Currently, there are far more than 100 different types of wine bottles in use in Germany alone," says Ernst Büscher of the DWI. A functioning deposit system, however, needs standardised bottles.