The Federal Association of Organic Viticulture or Bundesverband Ökologischer Weinbau e.V (BÖW)–whose certification trademark (since 1990) is ECOVIN–was founded in Germany in 1985 by 35 organic winegrowers from Rheinhessen, the Palatinate, the Moselle and Baden. ‘It was time to finally give organic viticulture in Germany an organizational face,’ said Rudolf Trossen, one of the 35 founding members from Rheinhessen, the Palatinate, the Moselle and Baden. The BÖW was the forerunner of ECOVIN which was registered as a trademark in 1990.
ECOVIN is the largest association of organic wineries in Germany (which see for data on Ecovin’s member vineyards). Ecovin members benefit from comprehensive training and education programmes, and Ecovin itself contributes to international guidelines on organics, being regarded as the key professional association for organic viticulture. Ecovin has begun a close cooperation with the Biodynamic growers with Demeter certification in Germany (Demeter e.V.) to make membership of and communication between both both associations easier.
1992: In 1992 government-supported consultants replaced the previously internally organized consultancy system. Seminars, meetings and in-house publications aimed to provide technical help and improved quality.
2004 In 2004 ECOVIN became a member of the German Viticulture Association. In the same year, the two associations run the first international symposium for organic viticulture ”.
1990-1995 The development phase: ECOVIN is registered as a trademark in 1990. The number of members of the association is increasing rapidly. In 1992 government-supported consultants replaced the previously internally organized consultancy system. Topics: perfecting production, publications, seminars, congresses
1995-2000: The professionalization phase: ECOVIN winemakers face the competition and convince independent juries of their good wine quality. The newly established office in Oppenheim increases awareness of the association among consumers with public relations work, corporate identity and an attractive website. The number of members levels off at 200. Topics: Prepare good wines in harmony with nature. Members: 1995 c.200.
2000-2005: Recognition and appreciation. The wine experts perceive ECOVIN wines as quality wines. In 2004 ECOVIN becomes a member of the German Viticulture Association. In the same year, the two associations run the first “International symposium for organic viticulture “. The association’s internal competition “Ecowinner” is being expanded. Topics: Further image cultivation and new marketing strategies.
2005-2010: International cooperation and increase in demand saw ECOVIN working closely with other organic cultivation associations at European level to create organic winemaking guidelines. In cooperation with the German Wine Institute, the association organizes international press trips and meetings in the wineries. Wine guides and magazines discover the quality of the ECOVIN wineries and strengthen their reputation. Overall, the demand for organically produced wines is increasing significantly. Topics: Political and viticultural engagement as well as focus on quality growth.
2005-2010: International cooperation and increase in demand. ECOVIN works closely with other organic cultivation associations at European level to create EU winemaking guidelines that have not previously been defined.
2020 Members: 245 members as of December 2020 with around 2,705 hectares of vineyards or around a quarter of the German organic vineyard area. VDP winery members comprise 846 hectares.