Thanks to the healthy, airy Provençal climate, the Sumeire family's vineyards have always benefited from a minimum pesticide approach.
This approach is based on the fundamental rule of respecting the environment. Cryptogamic treatments are therefore only applied when there is an established risk of disease, and in accordance with weather conditions and the precise nature of the threat.
The dose applied is always adjusted to the risk involved.
There is never any systematic treatment.
The Sumeire family's vineyards and chateaus have chosen to adhere to this charter, which goes beyond a minimum pesticide approach (agriculture raisonnée).
The goal is to preserve the environment and the terroir in the long term, by only using active inputs that do not impact the environment or useful auxiliary wildlife.
This is a trademark that was registered in 1998 by the Bouches du Rhône Chamber of Agriculture, which is applied to products that have been grown respecting the environment and which have a flavour and nutritional dimension.
The specifications focus on disease prevention methods, biological processes, the plant's natural defence mechanisms, crop science and the soil potential for each terroir.
The goal is to respect both the environment and the health of the users and consumers.
Many areas cultivated in compliance with NMP specifications have reached a stage where insecticide treatments are no longer necessary.
The specifications are updated every year.
Producers keep a logbook of work carried out in the vineyard that is inspected by an independent body.
Thanks to a modern, scientific approach, NMP has highlighted the beneficial effect of the traditional Mediterranean diet (consumption of grain products, legumes, olive oil, wine, aromatic plants, fruit and vegetables) and ways of enhancing this effect.
Wine is a complex product made up of hundreds of components.
NMP has carried out work on the optimization of the extraction of the phenolic compounds in grapes: these compounds are responsible for flavours and aromas in the wines; they are also powerful antioxidants, due to their capacity to "trap" harmful free radicals.
Thanks to the work of nutritionists, it has now been scientifically proven that the Mediterranean diet, which includes the moderate consumption of wine, can help to prevent numerous diseases.
Between 2010 and 2012, we pulled up 35 ha of vines, 20 ha of which have been replanted.
In 2013, 5.6 hectares of Côtes de Provence (Cinsault and Grenache) will be planted.
In principle, one hectare contains 4,000 vines but due to headlands (areas on the edge of plots where tractors can turn around) we usually only plant around 3,800 vines.
5.9 hectares will also be "complanted" (when different varieties are planted together).
A few figures: in 3 years, work in the Sumeire vineyards has used:
380 km of wire
27,000 galvanized vineyard stakes
400,000 clips for attaching vines to the wires
A bamboo support is provided for each young vine.
The vines will then be trellised.
Trellising consists of five key elements: anchoring, the end of row stakes, the mid-row stakes, the bearing wire and two lifting wires.
The aim is to raise the vine as high as possible.
The vineyard is hoed by hand under the vines and ploughed between the rows.
The young vines are watered until their third year. Their young, shallow roots cannot reach down to the water (unlike the roots of the adult vines that go down more than 40 cm and can draw up trace elements from the soil.)
While they are not in production, we carry out a green harvest.
The young vines are then harvested by hand after their third year in the Côtes de Provence appellation and after the fourth year in Côtes de Provence Sainte Victoire.
Rosés and white wines
Grape varieties used: for the rosés, Grenache, Cinsault, Tibouren and Syrah; for whites, Rolle.
Destemming if the harvest is manual (in the case of mechanical harvesting, the grapes arrive at the winery already sorted by the harvester)
Direct pressing (reduced contact between the juice and the skins, enough to extract the necessary colour), with draining of the juices as soon as the pneumatic presses are filled.
Continuous temperature control.
Separation of the free-run juice and the pressed juice.
Settling for one night, and then reincorporation of the lees with the clear juice (after tangential filtration of the lees).
The addition of yeast and alcoholic fermentation (for a period of: 10 to 15 days) at controlled temperature: 16 - 18°C.
Finally light sulphiting to protect the wines.
Tangential filtration, and then blending of the wines.
Followed by: electrodialysis (to avoid tartaric precipitation).
Grape varieties used: Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon.
Filling of the vats from the top, with the destemmed harvest.
Extraction of colour and tannins (maceration), daily pumping over,
Duration of alcoholic fermentation (10 to 15 days), and then post-fermentation maceration in vats (to soften the tannins) for several days (with immersion of the pomace cap),
The liquid is drained off and the pomace is pressed (to produce the "press wine").
Malolactic fermentation (at 20°C), and then when this has finished, racking and sulphiting.
In the spring: filtration through diatomaceous earth, and then blending.
Bottling one year after harvesting (ageing in stainless steel vats).