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Nomacorc releases new closure

Nomacorc has unveiled its latest product – a stopper allowing the lowest-possible oxygen transfer rate.

The synthetic stopper manufacturer, which produces 2.1bn closures annually, representing about 12% of the 18bn still wine closure market, claims its extruded plastic closures now offer perfect ‘oxygen management’.

‘Four years ago we started a research programme to understand how oxygen ingress through the closure affected the development of wine in the bottle,’ Malcolm Thompson, global vice president of marketing and innovation told Decanter.com.

Nomacorc’s research partners include the Geisenheim Intitute, University of California Davis, the Australian Wine Research Institute, the Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique at Montpellier (INRA), and the Centro de Aromas of the Catholic University of Chile.

Research programmes include the effect of oxygen on development of Shiraz, Cabernet Sauvignon, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and other grape varieties.

‘We now have sufficient data to go forward with our vision to introduce a line of closures that allow wines to develop exactly as the winemaker intended,’ Thompson said.

The Select Series 300, Nomacorc claims, allows oxygen ingress of 0.002cc of oxygen per day to enter the bottle. The Select 700 and 500 are more porous, allowing 0.0042cc and 0.003cc of oxygen into the bottle.

Nomacorc stresses that its closures don’t ‘mimic’ natural cork, ‘because natural cork is inconsistent,’ Thompson says.

By contrast, Nomacorc can control wine development through oxygen management with a great degree of exactitude, Thompon said.

‘We can determine which closure will allow the right level of development by type of wine, by varietal, by region, phenolic ripeness, barrel age, whether the wine is aged on lees or not and many other factors.’

He added, ‘First and foremost our objective is to educate the market on the importance of oxygen management.’

The Select Series is priced ‘competitively’ with natural cork, Nomacorc says.

  • Malcolm Thompson has questioned the Sommelier Society of America for its endorsement of natural cork. The Society, America’s oldest of its kind, has been widely reported as explicitly endorsing natural cork as ‘the preferred closure for wine’. ‘Why would they endorse something that causes double-digit faults in wine?’ Thompson said. ‘Isn’t it about wine quality?’
  • Written by Adam Lechmere

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