The Champagne industry's trade association, the Interprofessional Committee of Champagne Wine, said Tuesday it is launching a new standard bottle to cut carbon emissions.
The new bottle looks the same as ever but weighs 835 grams, or 29.5 ounces, instead of 900 grams, or 31.7 ounces. That means vehicles transporting it will require less fuel.
The committee says the change will cut carbon dioxide output by 8,000 metric tons a year, which it likens to the annual emissions of 4,000 cars.
The industry worked with glassmakers on the new bottles to ensure they can hold up under the pressure of the bubbles. Until the late 19th century, champagne bottles often exploded from that pressure — a problem that went away as glassmaking techniques improved.
Some vintners have begun using the new bottles already and are pleased with the results, said Sonia Smith, director of the Champagne Bureau, which represents the champagne industry association in the United States.
Based on a 2002 environmental impact assessment, France's champagne industry has set a target of cutting its carbon footprint by 25 percent by 2020.