Here’s the Scoop on Organic Wine and Sulfites

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Organic wines with sulfites

Image via Stefano Lubiana

There are several common misconceptions about sulfites in wine, so we’re here to clear up any possible confusion. Once you better understand the winemaking process, it’s easier to understand why sulfites are used and what purpose they serve your taste buds when sippin’ on the vino.

What are Sulfites?

Sulfites are preservatives commonly used in the winemaking process to maintain a wine’s natural freshness, and are generally harmless to the majority of wine lovers. As a naturally occurring byproduct of fermentation, most wines contain some level of sulfites. Without the presence of sulfites, wine is more likely to oxidize quickly, ruining the freshness and flavor of the wine.

Some wine drinkers are opposed to the idea of sulfites in wine because they view them as an unnatural addition. The truth of the matter is that sulfites can also be a natural byproduct of the yeast metabolism that occurs during fermentation. Even if winemakers don’t use sulfites to preserve the flavor of the wine, sulfites may still naturally be present.

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