With the pace of wine country reopening activities temporarily slowing in some areas, winery tasting room staff members may have a few minutes to read over this six-page summary of the WISE Academy’s Community Forum conversation involving Oregon winery owners and managers that took place June 10.
To protect winery guests and our industry’s work force, please remember the Oregon Health Authority’s announcement last week requiring face coverings for staff members and customers when they’re inside a public place such as a tasting room. While masks are not necessary when eating or drinking, they are otherwise required when your visitors are indoors. In important related news from OLCC last weekend, the Commission warns that unannounced visits are possible to make sure OLCC licensees, including wineries, are complying with Oregon law, Commission rules and Health Authority guidelines.
And as we look further ahead to promoting safe, satisfying Oregon wine tourism experiences again, the Oregon Wine Board is interested in hearing your ideas for feature stories and sidebars that will help OWB and our publishing partner design the next Oregon Wine Touring Guide. Please send us your suggestions by next Wednesday, July 15 so we can stay on schedule to produce the 80-page, four-color edition and have it available again for free to Oregon wineries and consumers in the spring. In the meantime, the digital version of the 2020 Touring Guide can be found right here, and of course Oregon wineries can still order printed copies in boxes of 40 at no charge.
The OWB’s annual investments in scientific research emphasize viticulture projects and one particular study addresses a topic of importance at this midpoint in the growing season. USDA-ARS research plant pathologist Dr. Walt Mahaffee has been studying fungicide resistance in grape powdery mildew. Walt’s most recent project report will be of interest to growers focused on farming more cost effectively while striving to minimize chemical inputs.
The week after next, on Monday, July 20, you’re invited to join Women in Wine: Fermenting Change in Oregon. Register by this Friday, July 10 to ensure you receive your goody bag. As you’d expect, everyone will gather virtually this time around, but despite the distance, the mission remains the same: empower and advance women in Oregon’s wine industry as we build an even more inclusive culture. Join your friends and neighbors for an outstanding program including guest speakers, networking and a “Happy Hour at Home.” Tickets are just $99.
And remember we’re just about three weeks away from the July 31 deadline by which applications are due to the governor’s office from industry members seeking appointments to the Oregon Wine Board of Directors for terms beginning in 2021. Here are answers to some commonly asked questions about Board service along with instructions on submitting the interest form and other required information.
One final late-breaking update about the federal government’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), which has provided over 57,000 loans totaling nearly $6.8 billion so far to Oregon business owners. The $670 billion PPP allocation is not yet exhausted. If you heard from people like me that SBA’s loan application deadline was June 30, be aware that a day after that, it was extended. The PPP loan window is now open until August 8.
Updated: Reopening Guidelines for Oregon’s Tasting Rooms
On June 16, an updated version of Guidelines for Oregon Wine Tasting Room Operations in Response to COVID-19 was published. Other reopening information—including Phase 1 and Phase 2 guidance for restaurants, bars and tasting rooms—can be found on the OWB’s frequently-updated COVID-19 Oregon Wine Industry Toolkit.
Prepping for Harvest Industry Forums | Thursdays at 10 a.m.
The Willamette Valley Wineries Association is hosting weekly calls for vineyard and winery teams to discuss particular questions and concerns related to harvest 2020 in the COVID-19 environment. Links to recordings from previous calls as well as registration for the next meeting on Thursday can be found in the Prepping for Harvest Toolkit Google doc. These calls are open to all interested industry members.
Have You Reopened for Onsite Consumption?
OWB is assembling a database of all tasting rooms open for onsite hospitality using visit.oregonwine.org. We are referring consumers and media to that site for up-to-date information. Filtered results will only capture tasting rooms that have been updated as open for onsite consumption. Please help keep it accurate.
Submit Story Ideas for the 2021 Oregon Wine Touring Guide | Deadline: July 15
Development for the fourth edition of the Oregon Wine Touring Guide is underway, and more than a third of the 80-page guide will be dedicated to inspiring and educational story content. If you have ideas for topics, submit them for consideration by July 15.
Order Copies of Oregon Wine Touring Guide
Now is a great time to keep Oregon wine country visitation top of mind with the complimentary Oregon Wine Touring Guide. Whether on display in tasting rooms or included in club shipments, the 2019-2020 Oregon Wine Touring Guide will inspire people to come (back) to Oregon wine country. Cases of 40 copies can be ordered here.
Wine Spectator 2020 Co-op Advertising Opportunities | Deadline: July 31
Wine Spectator is offering cooperative advertising opportunities in its October 15 issue, providing exposure in the magazine at a more affordable price than standalone advertising. Participation is first-come, first-served, and only a few spaces remain available.
OWB-Sponsored Research Update: Grapevine Response to Soil Moisture under Drying Seasonal Conditions
Dr. Patty Skinkis, professor and viticulture extension specialist in the Department of Horticulture at Oregon State University, has prepared an update about research she is conducting to determine vine water status, growth, and berry development response to weather and soil moisture conditions among different soil types throughout the season.
OWB-Sponsored Research Update: Persistence of Fungicide Resistance in Grape Powdery Mildew
Dr. Walt Mahaffee, research plant pathologist with the USDA-Agriculture Research Service, has prepared an update about research he is conducting to understand how fungicide resistance persists among grape powdery mildew in vineyards and how to mitigate resistance development to rejuvenate the efficiency of cost-effective fungicides.
Northwest Center for Small Fruits Research Announces Newly Funded Projects
The Northwest Center for Small Fruits Research has just announced its 2020-21 funded projects list. After a thorough review of applications by industry members and researchers, 26 projects were selected for funding. The NCSFR team thanks the peer review panelists for volunteering their time to participate in this year’s funding decisions. Click here to view the funded projects list for 2020-2021.
July 2020 Weather and Climate Forecast
On July 3, Dr. Greg Jones of Linfield University published an updated weather and climate summary and forecast. This report looks back at June conditions and forecasts conditions for July, August and September.
Survey Request: Understanding the Impact of Climate Change on Evaporation During Barreling | Deadline: July 31
Masters students in the Food and Resource Economics program at the University of British Colombia are conducting a study among U.S. wineries to understand how predictions from climate change modeling could potentially impact “angel share” evaporation of wine during barreling. As a thank you, the research team will share aggregate feedback with wineries that participate in the study, which should take less than 5 minutes to complete.
Women in Wine: Fermenting Change in Oregon Conference | July 20
The second annual Women in Wine conference, a gathering of women and men dedicated to advancing and supporting women in all facets of the Oregon wine industry, will be held virtually on July 20. Topics covered at the conference will include career journeys, implicit bias, sustaining excellence and building a culture that supports women in the workplace.
Webinar: Leveraging Strategic Partnerships for Inclusion and Equity Initiatives that Create Long-term Sustainable Growth | July 22
As part of the Oregon Tourism Leadership Academy, on July 22 Travel Oregon and ORLA will present a webinar examining topics of social justice and why sustainable growth in tourism is dependent on DEI initiatives. With a focus on strategic partnerships, a panel will share stories of how they have created beneficial change for themselves and their communities, and why these initiatives have become a business imperative for those looking for long-term sustainable growth.
Seminar/Webcast: Agriculture Law | July 23-24
Stoel Reeves LLP and the Oregon Farm Bureau will host their third annual Agriculture Law conference in-person in Bend with the option to join by live webcast. The program will include a recap of the 2020 legislative session, a look ahead to the 2021 legislative session and updates regarding key areas of environmental law.
Viticulture Seminar from Linfield University | July 29 – August 12
Linfield University offers a hybrid online coursework/field experience seminar designed to introduce students to where and how grapes are grown. Emphasis will be given to understanding varieties of grapes, their general biology and physiology, and the environmental factors required to grow grapes including climate, geology, soil and landscapes. The course will also cover the basic aspects of vine growth development and training, trellis systems and vineyard management.
Apply to the Oregon Wine Board of Directors | Deadline: July 31
The Executive Appointments staff at the governor’s office are accepting applications from industry members interested in joining the Oregon Wine Board of Directors for a three-year term starting Jan. 1, 2021. Learn more about Oregon Wine Board service and submit your application by July 31.
OWB’s Commitment to Equity
Like you, the team and directors at the Oregon Wine Board have been processing, reflecting on and discussing our responsibility in the fight for racial equity in America. As a first step, we published Our Commitment to Change, which outlines a number of steps we will take as an organization to incorporate the principles of diversity, equity and inclusion into our work.
Partners in Diversity
Partners in Diversity is a Portland based non-profit that aims to connect professionals of color with employers in Oregon. In light of the commitment many Oregon wine businesses have recently made to diversify their business, membership may be of interest. Benefits include access to a network of Oregon-based professionals of color.
Post Harvest Jobs on the OWB Marketplace
The Marketplace on the OWB industry website is frequently used by producers to post grapes, bulk wine and equipment for sale. Did you know it can also be used to post job opportunities? If you have harvest internship jobs—or others—available, post them to the Marketplace so we can spread the word to other organizations that might know of good candidates.
The OWB’s industry website hosts a calendar that includes industry-facing events as well as events with significant industry participation. Consult it when scheduling or rescheduling events to avoid conflicts, and don’t forget to post entries as well.
Links to post to both the industry calendar and the OWB’s consumer-facing calendar can be found here.