Thank you to the winemakers who joined us to pour some sensational wines from around the state for our guests from England, Canada, Sweden, Denmark, Japan, South Korea, Hong Kong and Mexico during OWB’s annual International Tour last month. The carefully selected group of veteran restaurant wine directors, importers and fine wine retailers were enthusiastic about Oregon’s wines and the prospect of expanding availability in our highest-priority export countries. Expenses for the tour are covered by a market development grant administered by the USDA. If you’re curious about the potential to expand your brand’s global distribution, click here to sign up for the OWB International Newsletter.
Leadership of the OWB’s Research Committee has been working overtime and staying in close contact with industry colleagues in California over the past two months to enhance the impact of the research investments made by growers and winemakers in both states. The OWB’s approved 2019-20 V&E Research budget will be supplemented by $340,000 in additional funding enabling scientists here to pursue new projects related to grapevine red blotch virus, the effects of fire smoke on wine grapes and fungicide resistant powdery mildew strains to name a few. None would have been possible this year without the two-state cooperation.
You may have heard that the Oregon Liquor Control Commission is hosting a series of open forums to be convened across the state starting this month to discuss issues of interest to our industry. The OLCC has set the schedule and chosen the agenda items to be covered. Click here to register for one of the four meetings.
And finally, our industry’s Nominating Committee is accepting applications from those interested in being considered by the Governor for a three-year appointment to the Oregon Wine Board of Directors. The Nominating Committee, which is comprised of 13 growers and winemakers who have volunteered from around the state, will get its recommendations to the Governor before the harvest. Applications for a term beginning Jan. 1, 2020 are being accepted by the committee through July 31.
NEWS FROM THE OREGON WINEGROWERS ASSOCIATION
Thanks to the industry volunteers from northeast Oregon as well as the Rogue, Umpqua and Willamette valleys who participated in a series of conference calls to draft and review Oregon’s response to the TTB about Modernization of the Labeling and Advertising Regulations for wines, spirits and malt beverages. OWA’s 10-page letter was submitted two weeks ago and can be viewed here.
Oregon’s historic 2019 legislative session came to a conclusion on June 30 after making headlines across the country. A crowded legislative agenda, complicated by some late-session political theater, forced lawmakers to focus their efforts. Many proposals, including one to reduce the blood alcohol content standard and another aimed at redirecting some lodging tax funds away from wine tourism, did not make it out of their respective committees.
However, House Bill 2015 passed in both chambers and awaits the Governor’s signature. After becoming law, Oregon residents who may not have lawful immigration status will be allowed to apply for Oregon driver’s licenses and permits beginning in January 2021.
The OWA’s priority bill, Senate Bill 112, also passed. It ensures all wineries buying and crushing Oregon wine grapes are subject to the same $25 per ton grape tonnage tax.* It carried with a 54-5 margin in the House and passed without a single opposing vote in the Senate. Once signed into law as expected, its provisions go into effect July 1, 2021.
*Section 3 of the bill’s textincludes language about wine grapes harvested and crushed in AVAs spanning state boundaries.
July 2019 Weather and Climate Forecast
On July 3, Dr. Greg Jones of Linfield College published an updated weather and climate summary and forecast. This report looks back at June conditions and forecasts conditions for July, August and September.
OWB-Funded Research Update: Persistence of Fungicide Resistance in Grape Powdery Mildew
Dr. Walt Mahaffee, research plant pathologist with USDA-ARS, has prepared an update about research he is conducting to understand how fungicide resistance persists among grape powdery mildew and how development of resistance can be mitigated.
2019 Oregon Grapevine Nutrition Guidelines
Dr. Paul Schreiner of USDA-ARS has put together vine nutrition guidelines for Oregon wine grape vineyards. Figures for both petiole and leaf blade nutrient levels are included.
Workshop: Getting to Know the Umpqua Valley Wine Visitor | July 10
Seminar: Viticulture at Linfield College | Aug. 1-14
Linfield College is offering a two-week seminar on viticulture, which will cover grape varieties, general grape biology and physiology, the environmental factors required to grow grapes, and basic aspects of vineyard management. The hybrid course includes online study followed by a five-day field course.
Conference: Oregon Water Law | Nov. 14-15
The 28th annual Oregon Water Law Conference will gather the most active, diverse and experienced Oregon water law experts to address the issues of the day. The program will provide an update on recent legislative developments along with discussions of the key issues driving water policy. A $75 Early Bird discount is available through July 11.
CALLS FOR WINE
Submit Wines to Sip Northwest’s 2019 Best of the NW | Deadline: July 16
Sip Northwest magazine is accepting submissions for its eighth annual Best of the Northwest issue. Published in November and reaching more than 120,000 readers, this issue will feature the winners across all categories.
Submit Wines for The Wine Advocate to Review | Deadline: July 22
Erin Brooks from The Wine Advocate will be in Oregon to review wines in late July. She will focus on the 2017 vintage but is willing to accept for review any bottled wine not already scored by The Wine Advocate. Up to 650 wines will be accepted before the July 22 deadline on a first-come, first-served basis, with a limit of four wines per producer.
Call for Symposium 2020 Wine Trial Proposals
With harvest on the way, you may be thinking about exploring new winery tools and techniques. If you have an experiment or trial you would like to develop and share at the 2020 Oregon Wine Symposium, contact Scott Dwyer. You may also reach out with an idea for which you need help developing a protocol. The Symposium organizers are searching for three trials, ideally focused on viticulture, enology and a product/tool.
JamesSuckling.com Reviews Now Out
Reviews from JamesSuckling.com senior editor Nick Stock, who visited Oregon in May, have been published. Nick says, “It should come as no surprise the wines once again delivered a strong unified impression of rich flavors, structure and balance.” The full Oregon report will be published soon.
Info Session for Sonoma State Global EMBA in Wine Business | July 21