Corks: fact or fiction

The cork industry continues to engage in questionable propaganda about the reliability of its products. A video posted by The Drinks Business says that executive director of the Cork Forest Conservation Alliance, Patrick Spencer, had;

“slammed the claim that one in every 10 wines bottled under cork is tainted, as a ‘myth’.”

In fact, I can’t recall anyone in the wine business claiming one in 10 cork-sealed wines is tainted, so Spencer appears to have created a ‘straw man’ just so that he can knock it down. Which is not difficult to do.

He also ignores the fact that – at least in Australia and New Zealand, the most prominent screw-cap adopters – premature oxidation is a more important reason for deserting natural cork than cork-taints such as TCA.

Spencer also revives the old chestnut about synthetic stoppers being cancer-causing, which is just scare-mongering.

Just by the way, cork taint is still a big issue with expensive French wines. The latest example is a 2000 vintage red Bordeaux tasting I organized for a private tasting group. Two of the 12 wines were TCA tainted, one costing about AUD $150, the other about AUD $250. It still hurts when this happens. And it’s so unnecessary when cork alternatives are available.

To view the Patrick Spencer video, click below.

One thought on “Corks: fact or fiction”

  1. Ruth Harris
    Ruth Harris says:

    Thanks Huon, it is great to have someone call the BS when they see it. Rather than 12, us ordinary people may only have one or two bottles of any particular high value wine so I want to cellar them with confidence knowing that I can enjoy them in a decade without worrying about losing one to cork taint. I love screw-cap.

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