Here’s a round-up of items you might have missed as you endured our short heat wave last week and hopefully celebrated a safe and memorable July 4 holiday.
First, since it’s timely, have a look at some tips from Oregon-OSHA for avoiding heat illnesses this summer and complying with the governor’s new rules.
Second, the Oregon Wine Board (OWB) joined other West Coast grower and winery associations last week in presenting a research progress report on the smoke impact work directed by Drs. Tom Collins (WSU), Elizabeth Tomasino (OSU) and Anita Oberholster (UC-Davis). The webinar attracted a couple hundred registrants from Oregon, Washington, and California, updating them on the USDA-NIFA funded, multi-state work being done to unravel the mysteries of wildfire smoke compounds and their complicated influences on grapes and wines. You can go right to the 26:50 mark and see some new findings related to recently identified phenolic compounds that layer on to researchers’ previous understanding as the experts examine this complex riddle.
Third, additional research news going beyond fire smoke is posted now on the OWB site including six of the latest midterm progress reports from the scientists who were awarded industry funding in 2021.
Fourth…don’t miss Silicon Valley Bank’s 2022 DtC Wine Survey Report video presentation which was hosted last month by Rob McMillan. Go to the 1 hour and 5 minute point for comparative monthly tasting room visitor counts and wine club trends by region including some Oregon-specific data points.
Finally, our post-analysis of the annual Oregon Wine Month promotion allows us to check Oregon’s topline performance trend relative to the overall category. This snapshot below from Nielsen reflects double-digit national dollar volume momentum for Oregon versus a 2% decline for all wines since the start of COVID. This longer arc is important since 2020-21 was characterized by an off-premise sales surge followed by a downward correction so far in 2022.
Correspondingly, Oregon’s DtC shipment numbers reflect +27.6% growth over this same period as measured by SOVOS/ShipCompliant.
P.S. the OWB’s Resource Studio continues to serve the industry as a useful reference destination with maps, facts, history, and more. And we’ve been working to freshen it up with new information following the recent recognition of Oregon’s newest AVAs. Everything within the Resource Studio is available for you to use at anytime with customers, consumers, or for staff trainings. If something comes to mind that we should put on our list for future Resource Studio updates, just let us know
Community Benchmark Shares Update on DtC Sales for Oregon Tasting Rooms
Oregon DtC sales continue to rise with tasting room sales showing the highest rate of growth as visitation to tasting rooms increases with the onset of warmer weather and sunshine. Wine club sales also continue to rise as customers continue engage and support producers. Digital sales (phone and email) are the only DtC category showing a decline as many producers may be slowing communications and outreach due to low stock levels from 2020. Year-over-year, year-to-date May 2022 data is from 135 tasting rooms across Oregon which participate in Community Benchmark. Overall, total DtC sales are up +13.1% vs. 2021. (+32.4% vs 2020). Here are the key data points:
Visitors: YTD Visitation in May 2022 was up +12.9% vs. 2021. (+89.9% vs 2020)
Tasting Room sales: YTD Tasting room sales in May 2022 were up +29.1% vs. 2021. (+139.8% vs 2020)
Wine Club Total Sales: YTD Wine Club total sales in May 2022 were up +11.9% vs. 2021. (+24.4% vs. 2020)
Digital+: Phone/email sales in May 2022 were down -15.4% vs. 2021. (-20.5% vs. 2020). Online sales were down -19.3% vs. last year. (+24.8% vs. 2020)
. * Includes data from Northern Borders (Columbia Gorge/Valley, Walla Walla Valley, Other), Southern Oregon (Applegate Valley, Rogue Valley, Umpqua Valley, Elkton), and Willamette Valley (Chehalem Mountains, Ribbon Ridge, Laurelwood, Dundee Hills, Eola-Amity Hills and McMinnville).
The Oregon Wine Board continues to support discounted new registrations to this detailed data tool and WISE Academy training for just a $150 cost to producers. Click here for more information on how to connect with the Community Benchmark program.
Update Your Winery and Event Listings on the New OregonWine.org
In April, OWB soft-launched its new consumer website centered around the True Character brand identity. We received excellent feedback from our industry members that has allowed us to continue to refine the site, and additional feedback can be submitted any time via our website toolkit. With tourism season kicking off, we encourage you to access your winery listing and make sure that all information is current and up to date. You can also submit events. Any technical questions or issues can be sent to email@example.com.
Alaska Airlines Relaunches Promotion of Wine Flies Free Program
As we come out of the pandemic, Alaska Airlines has restarted the promotion of their Wine Flies Free program. As promotion of Wine Flies Free starts to ramp up, we ask that you:
Check your listing in the tasting room directory to make sure your status as a participating winery is correct
Wine Flies Free is a great sales tool for wine tourists and also provides an opportunity to educate customers on proper packaging of wine for air travel. If you have questions about the program, reach out to Jean Carlon at Alaska Airlines at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Biodynamic Viticulture 2.0 Seminar Taking Place Aug. 5
The Montinore Estate is hosting an all-day seminar that will offer practical information on effectively implementing Biodynamic practices to achieve results in our vineyards and wineries. Presentations from local and international speakers, panel discussions, and wine tasting will provide attendees insights into the “how to” of Biodynamic practices to produce better grapes and wine. The $100 attendance fee includes lunch, and the event is limited to 50 attendees. Please send inquiries to email@example.com.
Press and Media
Oregon Awarded 23rd Nested AVA
On July 5th, Mount Pisgah, Polk County, Oregon, becomes the newest appellation in Oregon and nested American Viticultural Area (AVA) in the Willamette Valley. Drawn to reflect distinct soil, topography, and climate attributes, Mount Pisgah, Polk County, Oregon AVA becomes the 23rd federally recognized winegrowing region in Oregon and the 11th nested AVA within the Willamette Valley. Ten vineyards and three wineries make up this AVA, and more info with maps can be found here.
In one of its newest tasting highlights, Wine Spectator features wines from around Oregon, including Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Riesling, and delicately floral rosé, ranked up to 92 points and mostly under $30.
Portland Business Journal Says Oregon Wine Sales “Crush the Competition”
Oregon took center stage with this newest Portland Business Journal article, with columnist Pete Danko writing, “the Oregon (wine) industry performed far better than two of its biggest rivals, California and Washington”
Media Opportunities: Calls for Wine
VinePair’s Buy This Booze column has sent an open call for late-June/early-July wine submissions and standalone wine reviews specifically focused on Oregon Sauvignon Blanc and Malbec. Learn moreOregon Wine Press
Oregon Wine Press seeks Riesling, Gewurztraminer, Sylvaner, Muller-Thurgau, and Gruner Veltliner for its Cellar Selects section in its August 2022 Issue. For each varietal or type please send ONE submission (2 bottles) per brand and include retail price. Learn more
Northwest Center for Small Fruit Research’s Annual Conference Taking Place Nov. 14-16
Save the date! The NCSFR’s Annual Conference will be held from Monday, Nov. 14 to Wednesday, Nov. 16 at the Red Lion Columbia Center in Kennewick, WA. A room block is open for hotel reservations now, and more details will be posted later this month. Attendees can call (509) 783-0611, mention the conference, and get the room block rate.
Bidding Open For Summertime ¡Salud! E-Auction
This year’s Summertime ¡Salud! E-Auction is happening from July 12-14. Registrants will bid on exclusive ¡Salud! Cuvée Pinot Noir from 30+ wineries sold by the case and in a silent auction with wine country experiences and special wine collections. ¡Salud!’s mission is to make healthcare services accessible and affordable for Oregon vineyard stewards and their families, delivering no-cost healthcare to the vineyards with wrap-around support from bilingual, bicultural nurses and team members to break down barriers to care. Registering to bid is completely free and available now.
Wine Spectator Tasting Room Co-op Advertising Available for Oct. 15 Issue
Promote visits to your tasting room with Wine Spectator’s special advertising opportunity. Reach their audience of over two million readers who are high-frequency wine consumers and avid travelers by placing a turnkey ad in this print and digital co-op section.
Oregon Wine Board Seeking to Fill Position
OWB is currently looking for a Communications Manager to join our team. See more details below and please share the job posting with anyone you know who might be qualified and interested.
This position builds relationships and maintains contact with key media influencers across all platforms providing focused content that builds “Brand Oregon” in support of OWB’s strategic plan, among other responsibilities. Job posting
OLCC Rulemaking on Senate Bill #829: Conjunctive Labeling
The OLCC has recently issued Wine Label Guidance for Willamette Valley wines that utilize a “Nested AVA” designation. The guidance is associated with Senate Bill 829 on Conjunctive Labeling that was passed in the 2019 legislature. A link to the OLCC Wine Label Guidance is available here. A recording of a Webinar on Conjunctive Labeling and the OLCC Wine Label Guidance is available here.