Sparkling wine maker marks 10 years of using sheep to graze its vineyards

Nyetimber lets sheep wander at nine of its 11 sites across Sussex, Kent and Hampshire to help keep the grass levels low.

11 February 2022

A British sparkling wine manufacturer is marking the 10th year of using sheep to graze its vineyards to help improve sustainability of its grape production.

Nyetimber has been allowing sheep to wander at nine of its 11 sites across Sussex, Kent and Hampshire to help keep the grass levels low.

Nyetimber Vineyard sheep
Romney sheep graze the grass around the dormant vines at Nyetimber’s Manor Vineyard at West Chiltington in West Sussex (Andrew Matthews/PA)

This includes the Manor Vineyard in West Chiltington, West Sussex, where 600 Romney sheep split into two flocks are free to graze, which helps cut down on the cost and quantity of fuel used for mowing.

A Nyetimber spokeswoman said: “Romney sheep graze the grass around the dormant vines at Nyetimber’s Manor Vineyard at West Chiltington in West Sussex.

“The herd from a local farm form part of Nyetimber’s sustainability programme and are utilised for vineyard maintenance, keeping the grass low, reducing the risk of frost, maintaining grass leys on the estate and saving the cost of fuel for mowing.

“Along with keeping the weeds in check, their droppings aid localised microflora and microfauna.”

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