Here’s a quick update on the special project undertaken by Oregon State University Extension professionals. They have been gathering clusters for lab analyses that will measure smoke phenols in grapes and wines following this historic vintage. Statewide sample collection and testing are being financed by the Erath Family Foundation and the Oregon Wine Board. So far 85 samples have been retrieved from vineyards representing Oregon’s northern border AVAs as well as the Umpqua, Rogue and Willamette valleys. The assortment includes eight red and three white grape varieties. Lab work to provide data on free phenols and total phenols from each sample will begin after all grapes provided by industry members have been tested in the next couple of weeks.
Looking ahead for a way to drive sales before Thanksgiving? Click here to learn more about “The Giving Season” promotion. It’s a campaign open to all Oregon wineries and promotes gifting in support of families in need including many who have been displaced by the wildfires. The OWB and participating regional associations met last month to fine tune the concept and will be working jointly to sponsor awareness-generating messages in both paid and owned media channels. The promotion runs from Oct. 26 to Nov. 26, however the enrollmentdeadline is tomorrow, Wednesday, Oct. 14.Sign up here.
One of the organizational values we subscribe to at the Oregon Wine Board calls for transparency and disclosure. They are especially important where our priorities and programs are concerned, and the OWB’s most recent Annual Report reflects the management team’s commitment to those principles. The 44 pages also provide a detailed line item budget along with an in-depth explanation of the strategic foundations on which our annual business plans are built.
As expected, the global media’s focus on our country’s West Coast during the fires have kept our Communications department busy. Press inquiries nearly doubled and Oregon wine captured an audience of over 3 billion people between Sept. 23 and Oct. 7 in 1,200 articles. Compare that to a year ago, where we had an audience of 835 million and 720 articles. On Sept. 23 alone, 763 million readers focused on Oregon through several articles, including a Yahoo! Life piece syndicated from Esquire magazine about Black winemakers, written by a guest on our virtual media tour, Maria C. Hunt.
OWB also helped coordinate the submission of 450 wines to Erin Brooks for The Wine Advocate’s Oregon Report and organized a last-minute media tour to The Rocks District in Walla Walla Valley for Larissa Zimberoff who writes for Bloomberg, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal.
Here are a few other announcements that may be of interest:
Our friends at the California Association of Winegrape Growers provided this one-hour recording of a webinar delivered last Friday to CAWG members addressing crop insurance, coverable losses and smoke exposure language in winegrape contracts.
With many business owners asking about federal emergency relief packages, here are some details on CFAP2, the second wave of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program administered by the USDA. Unlike the program’s first iteration, CFAP2 includes grapes as a commodity crop eligible for assistance. CFAP2 is designed to provide limited financial support to businesses affected by the pandemic and calculates payments based on a producer’s 2019 grape sales. Visit OWB’s COVID-19 toolkit to read the fine print, and be aware of the Dec. 11 deadline for CFAP2 applications.
OSU Extension and the Oregon Wine Research Institute remind everyone about their live webinar series starting next week focusing on Grape Red Blotch Disease. Admission is free. These seminars will cover virus epidemiology, vector identification and biology, grapevine performance, wine production, fruit and wine composition, and wine sensory results. See additional details and access registration links further down in this newsletter.
Special thanks to a longtime friend of our industry, veteran fine wine and food journalist Katherine Cole. Katherine’s podcast helping to Celebrate Hispanic Roots featured a six-member panel of Hispanic winemakers who came together in recognition of National Hispanic Heritage Month for the chance to share their stories and present the wines available for sale to help raise funds for the Latino Partnership Program of the Oregon Community Foundation. The Foundation invests in education, leadership development and community bridge building within Oregon’s Latinx/o community.
Finally, while we know that no one is looking for another survey to complete, Silicon Valley Bank’s studies often provide useful insights, and SVB’s Rob McMillan says his questionnaire only requires only 15 minutes of your time. The survey link is provided further down in this newsletter.
Rob is sweetening the offer for regional groups this year. If SVB receives a statistically significant number of responses from an AVA, it will provide charts and graphs to compare that AVA’s results to those of the overall U.S.
Oregon Wine Industry Wildfire Smoke Toolkit
The OWB’s Wildfire Smoke Toolkit provides links to expert resources and other information to help growers and winemakers navigate challenges brought on by smoke. The toolkit is updated as new information and resources become available.
¡Salud! Flu Vaccination and COVID-19 Testing Schedule
¡Salud! offers flu shots free of charge at locations throughout the Willamette Valley to vineyard/winery and labor contractor employees and their immediate family members over the age of 14. The schedule includes COVID-19 testing on Wednesdays and instructions for scheduling an appointment; you’ll also need this vaccine request form.
Applications for Assistance from Food Security and Farmworker Safety Program | Deadline: Oct. 25
The Food Security and Farmworker Safety grant program offers financial assistance to producers who need to meet the temporary OR-OSHA requirements under the COVID-19 social distancing guidelines. Financial assistance is available to producers to help offset the cost of increased field sanitation measures, more stringent labor housing and transportation regulations, and face coverings. Applications are being accepted through Oct. 25.
The Giving Season Promotion | Deadline: Oct. 14
The Giving Seasonis a holiday campaign open to all Oregon wineries to promote gifting and giving back in the lead-up to Thanksgiving. The OWB and participating regional associations will support wineries through promotion in paid and owned channels. The promotion will run from Oct. 26 to Nov. 26 and the Oct. 14 enrollment deadline is quickly approaching.
To have your Thanksgiving Weekend Open House information appear in the November issue of Oregon Wine Press, be sure to send your details to OWP by Oct. 16. You may submit the form multiple times if you have additional locations or events. Contact Hilary Berg with questions.
Silicon Valley Bank State of the Wine Industry Survey | Deadline: Oct. 30
Silicon Valley Bank’s annual survey of U.S. wineries is open through Oct. 30. The survey questions, which should take about 15 minutes to answer, can be previewed here. Respondents will receive full anonymous results, top-level analysis and relevant charts.
October 2020 Weather and Climate Forecast
On Oct. 3, Dr. Greg Jones of Linfield University published an updated weather and climate summary and forecast. This report looks back at September conditions and forecasts conditions for October, November and December.
2019 Vineyard & Winery Report Published
The 2019 Oregon Vineyard and Winery Report was recently released, indicating steady growth within many areas of our state’s wine industry. The report details planted and harvested acreage, tonnage and yields by region and variety, as well as data on crush by region and sales across channels.
Join OSU’s Oregon Wine Research Institute (OWRI) for a free live webinar series on Grape Red Blotch Disease. These seminars will focus on research findings from Oregon-based studies conducted by researchers at OWRI and partners at the USDA-ARS covering virus epidemiology, vector identification and biology, grapevine performance, wine production, fruit and wine composition, and wine sensory results. Each seminar will allow a live Q&A session, and ODA pesticide credits are approved for the first five seminars in the series.
Webinar: Inspire Confidence with Online Listings During COVID-19 | Oct. 22
Traveler sentiment research shows that right now consumers want to know which destinations and businesses are open and following guidelines for health and safety. Join Travel Oregon on Oct. 22 for a webinar featuring tactical tips and best practices for maximizing your exposure on influential consumer-facing platforms, including how to utilize free tools from Google My Business, Yelp and TripAdvisor.
AHIVOY Accepting Applications for 2021 Wine Industry Professional Training | Deadline: Nov. 15
A few scholarships remain for AHIVOY’s 2021 Wine Industry Professional Training program. Working vineyard stewards and wine industry employers interested in learning more about the program can find information on AHIVOY’s website, along with the application form.
Live Webcast: Oregon Water Law Conference | Nov. 5-6
The 29th annual Oregon Water Law Conference will gather Oregon water law experts to provide an update on recent water-related legislative developments and discuss key issues driving water policy. Save $200 with code BST200.
CALLS FOR WINE
Wine & Spirits Seeks Syrah and Rhône-Style Red Blends | Deadline: Oct. 30
Organic Certification Cost Sharing Program | Application Deadline: Oct. 31
Oregon producers who have paid eligible organic certification costs between Oct. 1, 2019, and Sept. 30, 2020 can apply for cost share assistance from the USDA. Costs of certification received from or renewed through a USDA-accredited certifier are eligible for 50% reimbursement up to a maximum of $500 per annual certification scope. Apply by the Oct. 31 deadline.
Oregon Tourism Leadership Academy Accepting Applications | Deadline: Dec. 4
The Oregon Tourism Leadership Academy is designed for professionals currently employed in Oregon’s tourism and hospitality industries. Interested program participants should have supervisory, managerial or executive responsibilities in the private or public sector. Applications for the 2021 program are due Dec. 4.
Travel Oregon Tourism Industry Stakeholder Survey | Deadline: Oct. 30
As work begins on developing a new strategic plan that is responsive to Oregon’s dynamic tourism economy, Travel Oregon seeks input from communities, local businesses and individuals. Respondents will be asked what they are currently experiencing as a result of wildfires, the COVID-19 pandemic and social unrest, and what’s needed most to rebuild and support a strong, resilient and racially just Oregon tourism economy.
2021 Oregon Wine Industry Awards Nominations Open | Deadline: Nov. 15
Nominations for the 2021 Oregon Wine Industry Awards are being accepted until Nov. 15. The awards recognize contributions to the industry and will be presented during the Oregon Wine Symposium in February.
2021 Federal Crop Insurance | Deadline: Nov. 20
Oregon vineyards can obtain federal crop insurance through the USDA Risk Management Agency at a subsidized rate depending on the scope of the policy. Growers have until Nov. 20 to sign up for insurance for the 2021 crop year.
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.