part of our everyday lives
the rise of the aluminium wine screw cap
Have you ever arrived at your picnic destination with a bottle of corked wine, only to find you left your bottle opener at home? If you answered yes, you probably appreciate the invention of the aluminium wine screw cap.
Alcoa Australia Rolled Products at Yennora in Western Sydney, and Point Henry in Geelong, Victoria produce around 180,000 tonnes of rolled aluminium each year which is then used to make screw caps and aluminium food and beverage cans.
Some wine connoisseurs say we will look back in years to come and wonder why we used corks for so long. There are more and more Australian wineries turning to aluminium screw caps, and it’s not hard to understand why.
Screw cap closures provide wine lovers with the piece of mind that the wine will taste exactly as the wine-maker intended. All possibility of the wine being affected by any of the cork-related faults, which make wine smell and taste "off" or "corked", is lost with the use of aluminium screw caps.
Testing shows there is even a difference in taste between corked wine and wine sealed with a screw cap. As the wine ages, the wine sealed with an aluminium screw cap is fresher and ages more consistently than the same wine which has been sealed with a cork.
There is no doubt that the romance from the ceremony of pulling a cork cannot be replaced by the screw cap. But did you know that beer was once sold in bottles sealed with corks. Today however, you would be hard pressed to find corked beer. With education and time, the aluminium screw cap could dominate the wine industry - if it’s not already.
The top reasons wine makers use aluminium screw caps over corks:
1. Screw caps remove the risk of cork taint
2. Screw caps remove the threat of sporadic oxidation
3. Screw caps avoid flavour modification
4. Screw caps maintain a reliable long-term seal
5. Screw caps facilitate vertical storage
6. Screw caps provide greater resistance to temperature change
7. Screw caps are not affected by humidity
8. Screw caps are resistant to odours or insects in a cellar
9. Old bottles do not need to be recapped
10. Wines can be cellared for longer periods
11. Screw caps are easy to open
12. Screw caps are easy to reseal
13. Screw caps can be recycled
there’s no aluminium without bauxite
Stories spanning 30 years have been highlighted in a new book, released to mark the birthday of the world’s largest bauxite mine – Huntly.
The commemorative Huntly 30 year book, which is packed with images from over the years, was published last month to celebrate our people and their dedication to Alcoa.
Manager of WA Mines, Bill Knight, said Huntly had seen several significant achievements and changes over its 30 years.
“We’ve gone from slide rules to laptops, from 50 tonne trucks to 190 tonne trucks, and from planting eastern Australian eucalypts to successfully rehabilitating jarrah forest ecosystems,” he said.
“Our first 30 years were filled with stories of remarkable achievements - from our first year in production in 1976 when little over three million tonnes of bauxite was mined, crushed and conveyed to the Pinjarra Refinery – to 2006 when we produced over 22 million tonnes of bauxite.
“During this time there has always been one constant – the spirit of the people who make Huntly what it is.
“Our people are our success and this book is evidence of that,” Mr Knight said.
To view the commemorative Huntly Mine 30 year book, click here.
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