In the past, this was the usual term for a wine that was not allowed to be enriched with sugar (in order to increase its alcohol content). One of the attributes used for this was " naturally pure", but this was abolished in 1971 in connection with the German wine law. As a result, the "Verband deutscher Naturweinversteigerer" (Association of German Natural Wine Auctioneers) became the well-known successor institution VDP (Verband Deutscher Prädikatsweingüter) in 1972. In Germany and Austria, the designation "Natur", but also "echt", "rein" and "Gesundheitswein", as well as word combinations with these, are not permitted.
The legislator assumes that wine is in principle a natural product and that additional designations with "natur" and similar are misleading competition for the consumer. On a case-by-case basis, wines for which special cellar techniques and/or means have been dispensed with during vinification are described as "natural wines". However, this has no meaning under wine law and is prohibited on the label and in advertising. The terms natural wine or natural wine are also used for the alternative wine types Natural Wine and Orange Wine. However, none of these names have any meaning under wine law. In purely colloquial terms, natural wine is sometimes also understood to mean organic wine (eco-wine) within the framework of organic viticulture with, in contrast, defined production specifications under wine law.