Another Oregon Wine Symposium is fast approaching, starting three weeks from today. It’s hard to believe this will be the third Symposium I have worked to develop, with the guidance provided by your survey feedback and the hard work of your colleagues on the volunteer-driven OWB Education Committee. As is the nature of symposia, the event evolves each year to address the shifting needs of our growing industry. It is our most intensive and important industry education and networking event of the year, attracting more than 1,200 attendees over the two days.
This year’s Symposium focuses on three distinct channels of our industry: viticulture, enology and sales & marketing. The general sessions each morning are crammed with state of the industry and vintage updates from Silicon Valley Bank’s Rob McMillan, Zepponi & Company’s Kevin O’Brien, Linfield College’s Dr. Greg Jones, and A to Z Wineworks’ Sam Tannahill.
OWB-sponsored research is once again a highlight of the viticulture and enology tracks with three Oregon State University researchers coming together in a single joint vit-eno seminar complete with a sensory tasting—Fermentable Nitrogen: Is it Better to Manage in the Vineyard or Winery? Timely marketing seminars led by industry experts address Successful Media Relations: Strategy & Management and Staying Compliant in Consumer Marketing.
The 2020 trade show floor is set to be our most comprehensive and busy yet with all booth spaces committed and wine trials set to return. An expanded complement of learning opportunities is being offered throughout the trade show breaks with the return of the DTC Managers’ Roundtable and the addition of presentations on OregonSaves by Country Financial, an introduction to the Wine & Spirit Education Trust Systematic Approach to Tasting and a briefing on Total Workplace Health Safety.
As you may have seen, OWB has recommitted to the Profit Planner tools through our partnership with Wine Business Education, ensuring all Oregon winery and vineyard employees can access this tool for free. If you missed last week’s communication, the upgraded Profit Planner workbooks can be accessed here. To assist you in using the improved Profit Planner tool, the Wine Business Education team will be on hand at Symposium to answer all your questions and guide you through the workbooks.
In support of this relaunched program, we are hosting a series of practical accounting webinars in the coming weeks. The first, Accounting 101, starts at 10:30 a.m. this morning, and you can register to join here. Don’t worry if you miss it; recordings of all webinars will be archived on the OWB’s industry website and included in upcoming Grapevines.
So, if you have yet to nab your ticket to Symposium, register now. Don’t forget that groups of four or more can receive a discount off their Full Access registration. Gather your colleagues and come prepared to learn and engage with your industry network and set yourself up for another successful year in our growing industry.
Wishing you all every success in 2020.
Bree Stock MW
OWB Education Manager
Enter TEXSOM International Wine Awards with Free Shipping | Deadline: Jan. 24
OWB is again partnering with FedEx to provide free Ground shipping on Oregon entries to the TEXSOM International Wine Awards. This program is running through Jan. 24.
Register for Vinexpo Hong Kong | May 26-28 | Deadline: Feb. 28
Join OWB in May at Vinexpo, the premier wine trade show in Asia. VinExpo attracts buyers and importers from Asia and around the world, and is a great opportunity for producers looking to grow their sales internationally. There is also an opportunity to send wines for self-pour, with a deadline of Jan. 31.
Oregon Wine Month POS Available to Order for Tasting Rooms and Distributors | Deadline: March 2
The Oregon Wine Month 2020 toolkit is live and point of sale materials are ready for order. The OWB will print and ship POS materials to any distributor nationwide or Oregon tasting room interested in showcasing this annual celebration of Oregon wine. Let your wholesale partners know, and place your orders by March 2.
Sign Up to Pour at Total Wine During Oregon Wine Month
Total Wine & More is planning to celebrate Oregon Wine Month this May in their 193 stores across 20 states. During this focus period, they want to bring as many Oregon wineries as possible to their stores to pour for shoppers. Wineries with placements in Total Wine are invited to sign up for in-store tasting events at locations around the country.
Silicon Valley Bank’s 2020 State of the Industry Report and Webinar
Silicon Valley Bank recently published its annual State of the Wine Industry report and hosted a webinar to discuss the findings. The report discusses headwinds and tailwinds faced by the wine industry and offers predictions for 2020 along with a discussion of competitive category interactions and implications of shifting demographics.
Participate in OSU’s Agritourism Survey
If you entertain visitors or conduct direct-to-consumer sales at your vineyard, you’re encouraged to participate in OSU’s Agritourism Survey. Part of a national study, the goal is to learn more about ways that farm businesses open to the public to develop tools and resources for farmers.
Stakeholder Meeting: Provide Input on Smoke Exposure Grant Proposal | Feb. 13
Elizabeth Tomasino (OSU), Tom Collins (WSU) and Anita Oberholster (UC Davis) are collaborating on a research grant proposal to address smoke impacts on grapes and wine. Please register to join them in Portland the day after Symposium so they can get your input on issues related to wildfire smoke.
Profit Planner Workbooks Relaunched
The Profit Planner online business planning workbooks have just been relaunched with an upgraded platform and other improvements. Oregon winery and vineyard employees can access this valuable tool free, thanks to a partnership between OWB and Wine Business Education.
Sign Up for Accounting 201 Workshop | Feb. 4
The OWB is offering a series of webinars from Crafted ERP for Oregon vineyard and winery managers to help improve understanding of accounting and financial principles and how they impact profitability. Registration is open for Accounting 201, which will take place Feb. 4 at 10:30 a.m.
Biochar 101 Workshop | Feb. 27-28
OWB and OSU have partnered with Tualatin Soil Water Conservation District to bring a free two-day Biochar 101 workshop to Oregon growers, farmers and producers. Register to attend one or both days of this hands-on workshop.
Willamette Valley Vit & Eno Tech Group Vintage Recap and 2020 Meeting Dates
The Willamette Valley Vit & Eno Tech Group, led by OSU Extension Specialist Dr. Patty Skinkis, met in early December to discuss the vintage from grape growing and winemaking perspectives. Read their recap here, which includes the WV Vit Tech Group’s 2020 meeting dates. All are welcome; contact Patty for additional details.
Producers of Oregon Syrah are invited to submit wines for judging to Wine Press Northwest. Top-rated wines will appear in the magazine and online this spring, and those receiving an “Outstanding” rating will be invited into the publication’s 21st annual Platinum judging in October. The submission deadline is Jan. 24.
Participate in the New World International Wine Competition | Deadline: Feb. 7
Jerry D. Mead’s New World International Wine Competition is celebrating 30 years of service to the wine industry. Entries to the 2020 competition are being accepted through Feb. 7, and the judging will take place Feb. 23-24.
City of Veneta RFP for Community-Oriented Craft Beverage Business | Initial Deadline: Feb. 15
Veneta, one of Oregon’s fastest-growing cities, is investing in developing a vibrant downtown. It is inviting well-qualified entrepreneurs and established business owners to submit a proposal to be its craft beverage anchor.
2020 Wine Country Plates Grant Applications | Deadline: Feb. 21
Travel Oregon will be accepting applications for 2020 Wine Country Plates matching grants between Jan. 22 and Feb. 21. These grants are available to non-profit organizations for projects promoting wine and/or culinary tourism. Requests for letters of support are due to OWB by Feb. 7.
Oregon Sustainable Shopping Initiative Now in Effect
Oregon wine tasting rooms are reminded that as of Jan. 1 retailers are prohibited from providing single-use checkout bags to customers, and there are new restrictions on other checkout bags that may be provided. See this flier from Oregon.gov for more information.