A municipal wine made in Narbonne in the Languedoc is the first-ever wine of which 100% of the profits go to charity.
The town is one of the few municipalities in the country to own its own vineyard – and the only one to use its production to fund charitable projects in Africa.
Since 2003 the vineyard has been producing a special cuvee known as Narbo 118 – Narbonne was founded in 118BC. The first vintage was in 2005.
The wine is grown by local agricultural organisation Quatouze, vinified by the local co-operative and aged for 17 months in special small barrels in the 2000-year-old Roman cellars.
The wine is then sold in lots of 16 jeroboams and two salmanazars in an auction which last year raised €18,000.
The proceeds of the auction, and the sale of other regular 75cl bottles, available through normal channels, support water projects in Burkina Faso in West Africa. The programme is due to be extended in 2008.
Jean-Marie Ligneres, director of sustainable development at Narbonne mayoral office told decanter.com, ‘100% of the profits go to Africa. It’s the only wine in France sold like this, and the only town in France that runs its vineyard like this.
He added that 18 water towers in Burkina Faso should be installed by the end of the year, each reaching around 3,000 people per day, as well as water treatment plants and delivery pipes.
Narbo 118 is a blend of Carignan, Grenache, Mouvedre and Syrah.
Written by Jane Anson in Bordeaux