Sustainability & The Wine Society

The creation of a Sustainability team and a ‘Sustainability Hub’ on the website are welcome indicators of a forward-looking society. Great!

A question: is there a future for a twice yearly printed list issued by TWS?


Yes, there are many that prefer this. You can’t stop doing everything but what I think would be a welcome addition is the option to receive an electronic copy or paper version; let members decide. Then again having the option of choosing which marketing messages to receive has been on many members wishlist.


Isn’t the List the one thing you can choose separately to receive by post or not? At least it is in my marketing preferences.

Can you choose electronic vs paper?

You can already choose not to receive the list or any other hard copy communication. I’ve opted not to receive anything for several years now. The daily bombardment of emails is ample compensation.

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I think so for the List, but It’s not 100% clear. The options look like this

I would read that as saying if you said yes to email and post, but no to the List by post, you’d only receive the List by email, but there is of course room for a bit of ambiguity there. Of course, not all of the email marketing is also sent by post, even if you say Yes to post.

I don’t think that’s the case. The only list available electronically is searching the website. Hope someone can correct me but actually receiving a PDF version for example doesn’t appear an option. It’s hopefully one of the small sustainability changes they may make in the future.


I think you’re correct (though I ask for the printed list)

That does seem to be the case. Yet if you poke around Google (apparently other search engines are available), you can find PDFs of the List buried deep in the TWS site, though with no apparent navigation on the site itself to find them.

This is the most recent one I could find, not to say there aren’t others

So, it’s possible, and happening somewhere, though apparently not yet a choice for members.


Ditto, and to come to the initial thread question I think there is still demand for the printed version. Although mine hasn’t arrived yet!

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I hardly use the main list any more, but I would be much more inclined to use a print copy. Maybe it’s an age thing, but I find pdf’s and other electronic formats really cumbersome when it comes to any kind of 'reference ’ book - guide books and the like. I’m very happy to use an e-reader for a novel, but I find them difficult to use when I might want to flick back and forth.


I receive the hard copy of the List, but hardly ever read it for buying decisions. Its most useful feature for me is as a reference point to past ranges and pricing. If an archive of PDFs were readily available (and findable) on the website, I would stop taking the printed version.


It’s pretty clear that neither TWS nor a lot of members are ready to give up on a printed copy of The List. Fair enough … for now.
As mentioned, a good idea for the website to provide an easily findable pdf. version to help reduce demand for print copies. We need to be ‘nudged’ to be more sustainable rather than compelled.

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Google is the only way I ever find anything on the WS website.

Given the demographics of TWS membership, it’s hardly surprising that a substantial chunk still want paper copies.

TWS itself doesn’t yet appear to have any focus on this area in its sustainability strategy. That is focused primarily (and probably correctly) on reduction in use of glass, the greatest source of carbon emissions in the wine world. The only mention of paper is in the attempted reduction of cardboard packaging for wine. Maybe they’ll get to it eventually.

As for nudge rather than compel, self-regulation is a noble idea, but most of the time it is trumped by self-interest and unwillingness to change. In the end, some sort of stick is usually necessary along with the carrot. As an example, If the PDFs were made easily available, then perhaps a charge could be introduced for those who wish to continue receiving a paper copy. Controversial in some quarters no doubt, but it would reduce paper use and save costs.


I was delighted to see the hub - I’m impressed with the progress in such a short time.

I was pleased to see that some of my favourite producers have featured profiles too - I’m thinking of making that a jumping off point for my Xmas purchases - which tends to be when I try new things as I know it’s impossible to please everyone.

I agree with previous comments - print is with us for a while, but I’ll need to check my subscriptions to see if I can elimiate the blurb by post as I still get too much I don’t look at.

That said, there are things that can be done to lower the impact of print copy - not just paper but the chouce of inks, and even font selection can add to the quantity of ink used, the weight of the publication, and the carbon emissions related to postage…

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