Symington Family Estates puts sustainability to the fore

Port producer Symington Family Estates has joined companies such as Patagonia, Innocent Drinks and Kickstarter in becoming a ‘B Corporation’ as well as announcing a new sustainability strategy.

The B Corporation certification process not only assess a company’s existing, social, environmental and ethical business practices, it also obliges directors to make social and environmental goals an equal priority alongside financial ones.

Rob Symington commented: “We are proud that our existing practices have earned us B Corp status. This is an important step in our ongoing commitment to maximise the positive impact we have as a company.

“Becoming a B Corp sets us on a journey of further changes to systematically transform our activity and ensure we are responding to the big shared challenges of our time.”

Symington Family Estates has also revealed a new sustainability strategy, called ‘Mission 2025’ – and a plan to reduce its carbon footprint with the ultimate goal of going carbon neutral by 2050.

The Mission 2025 project includes 10 ‘flagship’ goals revolving around renewable energy, water and electricity efficiency, forest regeneration, low-impact packaging and local community projects.

The full list of goals can be seen below.

In addition, Quinta do Ataíde’s new winery, due to open in 2021, is being designed to be Portugal’s first LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) certified winery.

Rupert Symington added: “Climate change is a very real threat in the Douro Valley. Alongside our efforts to adapt in the vineyard, we are determined to play our part in the shift to a zero-carbon economy. Our first goal is to reduce our emissions by 35% between 2015 and 2025. We have already reduced them by 23% and are working on further reductions. We are committed to Portugal’s national goal of achieving carbon neutrality before 2050.”


Goal #1 – Renewable energy
100% electricity from certified renewable energy sources. 20% generated in-house.

Goal #2 – Electric vehicles
100% of new passenger vehicle purchases, by 2025, will be electric or hybrid.

Goal #3 – Carbon emissions 
35% reduction in CO2 emissions per litre of wine bottled (between 2015 and 2025).

Goal #4 – Energy efficiency
10% reduction in electricity used per litre of wine bottled.

Goal #5 – Water efficiency
10% reduction in water used in winery & bottling per litre of wine bottled.

Goal #6 – Biodiversity support
Support major ecosystem restoration / reforestation project in Portugal.

Goal #7 – Low-impact winery
Gold LEED (sustainable building) certification for our new winery.

Goal #8 – Volunteering scheme
80% uptake of new employee volunteering programme.

Goal #9 – Impact fund
Launch new Symington social & environmental impact fund.

Goal #10 – B Corp certification
Achieve certification for highest standards of social & environmental performance.

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