Proceedings of the International Association for Business and Society

Volume 28, 2017

Proceedings of the Twenty-Eighth Annual Meeting

Sonja Grabner-Kräuter, Adele Santana
Pages 95-104

Biodynamic Certification Processes Advancing the Sustainability Agenda in the Wine Industry
A Comparative Study of Two Producing Regions

The present study explores the impact of the broader environment, the internal and business contexts, and organizational resources on wineries’ decision to become biodynamic certified. We look at, respectively, the respekt-BIODYN certification in Austria and the Demeter certification in Sonoma, CA. Through in-depth, semi-structured interviews with wine industry experts in both countries, we collected data on the reasons why wineries adopt biodynamic practices and become certified; how vintners balance the economic, ecological and social pillars of sustainability; the benefits and challenges of biodynamic farming; to what extent vintners communicate biodynamic practices to consumers; how vintners assess consumers’ attributions of value to biodynamic wines and consumers’ purchase decisions. Results indicate that, although wineries’ motives to become biodynamic certified and the processes they embrace in order to achieve this goal are quite different in the two regions, consumer reactions to certified-biodynamic wines to this date have been similar.