Our promise to you is that as many as possible resources shall come from certified organic sources, and non-GMO Neutral Grain Spirits whenever possible.
Fresh, naturally grown, true to terroir ingredients create the best taste not only in food, but especially in beverages which are either fermented or which are macerated in a distilled spirit.
In the case of our wines and grappa and olive oil, the products all begin on the Vicario-Wesley family owned property, Soc. Agricola Sant'Andrea a Bacialla, SRL, in Cortona Italy. Certified European Union Biological (the basic equivalent to USDA Organic) the entire farm cultivates using only organic methods. The vineyards and cellars are also certified ICEA Vegan, meaning that no animal by-products are used in the field or in the cellars for wine making purposes.
Our grapes, olives and other fruits and herbal ingredients which we are able to grow, will become our wine, grappa, brady and liqueurs, and are all tended personally by our family and experienced staff. Since the vineyards are small in size, we can tend them by hand. At times it is necessary to purchase fruits or herbs and spices to meet demands and blend requirements, and in these cases, we personally know the farmers or producers who raise the produce and we personally visit the properties where they are grown to be sure they meet our principles, or we purchase certified organic ingredients. We also visit and know personally the owners of the olive mills where the oil is created from the fresh olives to check for the proper environment and cold processing equipment making our olive oil.
In the case of liqueurs made in Greer, SC, all ingredients whenever possible are sourced from USDA certified organic growers in order to assure our promise to clean earth growing methods, as well as to assure those who purchase our products the optimum in taste. We grow our own herbs and fruits on location at Moon Hare Gardens, the property behind the liqueurs production and storage facility in Greer, SC. Growing in Greer you will find French Tarragon, Lemon Verbena and Artichokes as our major crops, along with mint, rosemary, sage, tansy, lavender and other aromatic herbs used in our liqueur making. In some cases we purchase wild harvested spices or herbs which have no organic supplier. We seek fair trade suppliers and do keep in mind the growers health and welfare when purchasing.
Why? We believe that organically grown products help to provide a cleaner earth, and do not leave a Genetically Modified disaster on the planet but also TASTE better because of the natural way in which they are cultivated. Organically grown products create a safer environment for farm workers, and do not destroy bee populations or other beneficial insects. Organically grown products do not employ herbicides, but do encourage cover crops, and are the best way we can create a quality product full of naturally good aromatic properties. In cases where ingredients such as sugar, vanilla, or spices that can not be locally grown, we promise to seek organic sources that treat workers fairly, and pay proper wages, and do not destroy wild harvested plants, but work in harmony with a sustainable system.
Our commitment to sustainable agriculture goes beyond our own use, as we offer space to students incubator farmers learning during their education at Moon Hare Gardens, the small farm behind the Salute! LLC warehouse.
About organic Neutral Grain Spirits, a major component in our handcrafted liqueurs, although are not Certified Organic, are guaranteed by the producer to be completely non-GMO from the source. The cost of organically produced neutral grain spirits are more than three times the cost of GMO corn sourced spirits, which we refuse to buy, therefore our prices may be higher than other small batch producers.
Most brands of spirits are created with some portion of purchased distilled Neutral Grain Spirits, and most are derived from GMO corn. Although some distillations of non-organic GMO neutral grain spirits have been tested and they have found no detectable levels of GMO to be present in the distilled product, Salute! LLC will not use these distillations of GMO sourced grains, and uses only organic neutral grain spirits in our liqueur production.
We choose to spend more for organic or non-GMO ingredients, including Neutral Grains Spirits, as we commit to purchase and use only products created with environmentally clean farming methods which are sustainable, and agree that GMO agriculture is not sustainable and pours vast amounts of herbicide and other harmful chemicals into the earth as well spreads unwanted seeds to far reaching areas by wind, water, or animals.
Refusing to use chemicals such as pesticides,
herbicides, and seeds which are genetically
modified takes much more effort on the part of the farmer, and in some cases reduces the amount
of product they will be able to sell which may demand a higher price, yet because of the devotion to
these age old methods, the farm products are free of any dangerous chemicals to the farm worker's health, reducing the risk of cancer and
other diseases, and which prevents future risks of diseases by not
adding these harmful substances to the water, air or soil systems and which helps to create soil that can be used well by future generations.
After all, what goes into a maceration of alcohol is extracted into your beverage, and we'd like to be sure you have only the best tasting product available.