PHOSPHONATES, term used to describe phosphonate salt compounds with fungicidal properties. Their use in organics to help reduce the reliance on copper-based sprays is controversial because phosphonates act as systemics and so can leave residues in wine and only help reduce rather than eliminate the need for copper-based sprays. In organic and Biodynamic wine-growing the use of phosphonates in Europe is allowed in Austria and Germany but only before flowering, and thus before the grapes are formed, thus avoiding the risk of residues ending up in the wine.