Close up of text on Frey Wine label: "Organic Wine, No Sulfites Added"

Frey Organic Wines – No Sulfites Added

Organic Wine is Wine Without Added Sulfites

Under the USDA National Organic Program, sulfites are a synthetic food additive. They are not allowed in organic wine or any other certified organic food products, such as dried fruits, jams, salad dressings or juices.

In over 30 years of organic wine making, we have never added sulfites or other synthetic additives to our wines. Sulfur is abundant in all life forms and takes many forms in living organisms. Small amounts of naturally occurring sulfites are present in wine and other foods.

Synthetic sulfites added to wine are used as a mild antioxidant preservative and stabilizer. Sulfites are added to wine in the form of sulfur salts, SO2 gas or sulfur dioxide solutions. They are commonly used at several stages in the winemaking process. They can be added at the crusher when the fruit enters the production stream and after primary alcoholic fermentation, final levels are adjusted before bottling.

Due to the reactive nature of free sulfites, most join with other substances in the wine, becoming “bound” sulfites. Once bound, sulfites can’t be tasted or smelled, except at high levels. Any added sulfite that does not react with the wine remains "free". It is these free, reactive molecules that can be smelled and tasted and react with sinus tissues to cause a sulfite reaction.

Sulfites are measured in parts per million, or ppm. Following is a brief overview of maximum amounts of sulfites allowed in different classes of wines.

  • Organic Wine: Under 10 ppm naturally occurring sulfite
  • Biodynamic Wine: 100 ppm added sulfite
  • “Made with Organic Grapes” wine: 150 ppm added sulfite
  • All wine: 350 ppm added sulfite

Our wines usually range from 0 ppm to 5 ppm naturally occurring sulfites, though most measure 0 ppm. These levels are minimal when compared with an egg, which was shown to contain 6 ppm in independent laboratory testing.

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