Jun 15, 2022

Wise Wolf packaging sets out to reduce the environmental impact of wine

Accolade has launched Wise Wolf wine in a packaging designed by Denomination, made from recycled, recyclable materials.
Elisabeth Skoda

The new wine brand comes in a 100% post-consumer recycled glass cullet, with labels that are made from 100% recycled paper and closures made from 100% recycled plastic. The total pack is made from 95.1% recycled content and can be recycled again.

As protecting the environment is increasingly at the forefront of many people’s minds, the need for sustainable packaging has become more pressing. Consumers, especially younger millennials, are actively looking for more environmentally-friendly brand solutions that make them feel good about the choices they make with their purchases.

Accolade is constantly searching for new and better ways of doing things and committed to driving positive environmental change. We wanted Wise Wolf by Banrock Station, to be bold and brave about paving the way forward in the wine industry. We’re on a journey with alternate pack solutions that reduce waste and use as much recycled content as possible” says Nancy Baghdadi, Accolade’s Global Innovation Director.

“In creating Wise Wolf, we used the reintroduction of wolves into Yellowstone Park as a case study,” says Rowena Curlewis, CEO of Denomination. “The restoration of this important species has created a more balanced and healthy eco-system in the US national park, helping flora and fauna flourish, and was perfect inspiration. Here, the wolf represents a return to nature by leading the way, just as Wise Wolf is at the apex of a movement to reduce the environmental impact of wine packaging.”

This is encapsulated through the main icon, which is "proud and confident, yet approachable". It then cascades down through the rest of the pyramid-shaped design.

Using natural, mossy, earthy textures and colours found in the wild, the colour palette also reflects that idea of a return to nature, while the scratched texture on the bottle’s surface communicates the brand’s environmental credentials and link back to the wolf’s fur. A round label shape was chosen to not only stand out but also to communicate the environmental credentials by echoing the circular motion of recycling, as well as the circle of life.  

The unusual shape of the bottle – chosen from the Wildly Crafted Range at Estal – is also used to attract attention, yet it still has the tapered wine bottle shape to give it a sense of familiarity. Transparency is central to the brand’s ethos, and so a QR code is available on each label linking to a website that gives more information on the environmental credentials of each component of the packaging.

“Sustainability is central to our business. We wanted to show that Accolade are leaders of the pack in the wine market, making sure Wise Wolf could act as a catalyst for others to also create better, greener solutions for wine packaging,” says Rowena Curlewis.

“By influencing brands to put sustainability at the forefront of their decision-making, Denomination can help reduce the impact that our brands’ packaging has on the earth. We want more and more brands to choose sustainable solutions, so jointly we can all make a difference to this wonderful world we live in,” she adds.

“Denomination has an uncompromising dedication to sustainability and a passion for beautiful designs, so were the perfect choice for Wise Wolf. They constantly challenged us to maximise the amount of recycled content, without ever compromising on the design, and their vast knowledge and strong contacts with suppliers was invaluable. What they have helped create demonstrates that we can use the maximum amount of recycled material and deliver a quality range of wine to consumers” says Nancy Baghdadi.

The three wines - a chardonnay, a rosé and a cabernet sauvignon – will be available in in major fine wine retailers across the UK from June 2022.

Elisabeth Skoda

Editor of Touchpoints magazine, writer for Packaging Europe magazine and design enthusiast!
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