Happy New Year to my friends and colleagues in our great Oregon wine industry! I am very honored to serve as your Oregon Wine Board chairman for 2017.
I had the opportunity to come to Oregon in 2001 with my wife Karen and family as part of a 17-year career with the King Estate Winery. In 2004, while exploring the great breadth of our state’s viticulture riches I became aware of the tremendous potential on the Oregon side of the Walla Walla Valley and joined in a partnership of leading Oregon and Washington vintners to collaborate in and develop the Octave Vineyard in Milton-Freewater. In 2012, my family and I also started our own Walla Walla winery project, Hanatoro Winery. Since 2015, I have been honored to work for and help lead Cristom Vineyards in the Eola-Amity Hills of the Willamette Valley. In short, I am a big believer in the potential of our entire state, the Pacific Northwest wine industries and all of our wonderful wines, people and places.
As I embark on my fifth year on the OWB, I also chair the export and marketing committees, which I have been a member of since the commencement of the board in 2003.
Entering 2017, the opportunities for our Oregon industry are as great as the challenges are daunting. Oregon continues to lead the U.S. wine industry with a spirited research agenda and marketing initiatives that punch far greater than our weight. We have great potential before us and three outstanding vintages in place to help fuel this opportunity. As an industry we lead the global wine landscape in terms of quality, image, consistency and innovation. But we have so much work to do in order to continue moving ahead. The three legs of the OWB mandate – marketing, research and education – will need investment, work and continued diligence. The OWB Directors and staff are up to this challenge.
In 2017, you are represented by an exceptionally talented Board of Directors: Doug Tunnel of Brick House Wine Company will serve his sixth year on the board as vice chairman; serving as treasurer for the second year is John Pratt of Celestina Vineyards in the Rogue Valley; chair emeritus for the second year will be Ellen Brittan of Brittan Vineyards in McMinnville. Continuing Board members include JP Valot of Silvan Ridge Winery in the South Willamette Valley and Hilda Jones of Abacela Winery in the Umpqua Valley. We also welcome three new members, Eugenia Keegan of Jackson Family Wine’s Oregon operations, Kevin Chambers of Koosah Farm in the Eola-Amity Hills, and Jason Tosch of Anne Amie Vineyards. The talent and experience of all of these individuals across a broad range of global wine experience is exceptional and will serve our industry well in the coming year.
Sadly, we lose three outstanding Board Directors. Michael Donovan, Bill Sweat and Dr. David Beck end their board service, each having served as chairman during their tenure and each having contributed well beyond their share of outstanding committee work and leadership during some very challenging times for our industry. We will miss their contribution at the board level but I am pleased to let you know that each will remain active at the vice-chair or co-chair level on at least one OWB or OWA committee in 2017. It is this kind of ongoing lifetime dedication to our industry that will allow us to scale new heights in the years to come.
The OWB staff are also at the top of their game and ready to assist with effective and inspiring contributions to our industry.
The calendar year begins with one of the American wine industry’s premier wine events, the Oregon Wine Symposium, Feb. 21 – 22 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. The Symposium brings our entire industry together with leading exhibits, vendors, speakers and educational sessions. This is a great opportunity for you to meet with colleagues and sharpen your skills and knowledge for the work necessary for members of an industry to remain at the top and prosper. My colleagues and I on the Board of Directors and OWB staff look forward to seeing you there!
Oregon Wine Board
OREGON WINE SYMPOSIUM
Register for the 2017 Oregon Wine Symposium
Register now for the 2017 Oregon Wine Symposium, Feb. 21-22 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. The Symposium comprises two full days of industry thought leaders and experts covering the most relevant topics in viticulture, enology and wine business plus the Northwest’s largest wine industry trade show, with more than 170 exhibitors.
The Symposium is a must-attend event for wine industry professionals, delivering cutting-edge technical and business intelligence trends across all aspects of the wine business. Click here to get your tickets today!
Deadline Extended to Submit Your Application for the 2017 Experimental Wine Tasting
The experimental wine program is back for the 2017 Oregon Wine Symposium. Click here to submit an application or for more information about the program. Applications are due by Jan. 20. For questions, contact Carrie Hardison.
Showcase Your Wine at the Oregon Wine Symposium Soirée
The Symposium planning committee has made several enhancements to the 2017 Oregon Wine Soirée networking event. To make the celebration more convenient and accessible, the festivities will be held on the trade show floor directly after the sessions on Tuesday, Feb. 21. The additional space and extra wine stations will allow attendees easy access to wines from around the state. If you would like to have your wine featured at the Soirée, contact Lydia Mullany for more information.
2017 Symposium Trade Show Sponsorships Available
The Oregon Wine Symposium is the premier educational event and trade show for the Northwest wine community. This event brings wine industry professionals together to discuss current issues, discover new tools or techniques and network with service providers and peers. Participation as a sponsor will give you access and exposure to more Oregon wine industry members than at any other time during the year. If you offer a service that directly relates to the Oregon wine industry, consider participating as a sponsor now. Space is limited and exhibit booths for non-sponsors are now on a wait list. Click here for more information.
Stay in the Loop by Following the Oregon Wine Symposium
Get live updates on speakers, sessions, exhibitors and more by following the Oregon Wine Symposium on Twitter @ORWineSymposium or Instagram @ORWineSymposium. Join the conversation by chiming in using #ORWineSymposium.
The 2017 Oregon Wine A-List Restaurant Award Winners Revealed
Congratulations to the 2017 Oregon Wine A-List award winning restaurants! This year the Oregon Wine A-List features 124 restaurants from 15 states and four countries. Nine Oregon Wine A-List restaurants received the Regional Spotlight award for their extraordinary commitment to crafting extensive Oregon wine lists, and Larks Home Kitchen Cuisine with locations in Medford and Ashland won Wine Program of the Year. Click here to read more about the program and winners. Promote the winners by using the social media graphics, logo and recommended wine club newsletter copy in the A-List Marketing Toolkit. Thank you to all the industry members who submitted restaurant nominations in the fall. For more information, contact Christina DeArment.
INTERNATIONAL MARKETING EVENTS
Toronto Trade Tasting 2017 – Last Call for Registration
Join the Oregon Wine Board for a spring event in Toronto, Ontario. The event, taking place on Apr. 11, is aimed at attracting top-level trade and media in the Ontario market. The main event will consist of an interactive walk-around tasting and salmon bake targeting more than 100 key trade, LCBO buyers and media. Additionally, there will be a structured seminar taking place before the tasting for 50 members of the trade. The LCBO will also be hosting a best practices seminar so this is a fantastic opportunity not only for wineries that are already in the market but for new to market wineries to get tips, advice and pour their wines for the top Ontario trade. The deadline to register has been extended to Jan. 31. Click here to register and for more information.
Register Now for Newly Commissioned Consumer Research Study Webinar
OWB recently commissioned a Wine Opinions survey to further understand the purchasing habits, buying influences and perceptions among the segment of fine wine consumers who purchase 85% of wines priced more than $20 at retail. This study digs into the Oregon wine “super fan,” investigating attributes and behaviors of consumers who cite Oregon wines as being “among their favorites” and how they differ from more casual Oregon wine consumers. These insights will provide food for thought as you develop your sales strategy in the new year.
Join the OWB and Christian Miller of Full Glass Research as he presents the findings from this study in a webinar on Jan. 18 at 11 a.m. Registration is limited so please only register if you will attend the live webinar. All live participants will have the opportunity to ask questions on the findings. If you are unable to participate, this webinar will be recorded and available to view on the education resources tab on the OWB industry website directly after the event. Click here to register. For questions, contact Carrie Hardison.
Attend the City Club Of Portland’s Environment Issue Forum on Oregon Agriculture in a Changing Climate
Join City Club’s Environment Issue Forum at the Ecotrust Building in Portland on Jan. 26 at 5:30 p.m. for a panel discussion on how climate change is affecting agriculture and what steps are being taken to mitigate its effects. Speakers include Michael Cloughesy, director of forestry of the Oregon Forest Resources Institute; Harry Peterson-Nedry, founder, winemaker, and managing partner of Chehalem Wines; and, Jeff Stone, executive director and CEO of the Oregon Association of Nurseries. Click here to reserve your seat.
Wine Studies Workshops Offered at Chemeketa Community College
Chemeketa Community College is offering a variety of workshops for vineyard management and wine business from late January through June. Some workshops are offered in Spanish. Click here for a full list of workshops, locations and costs. For questions, call Chemeketa at 503.584.7255.
Attend the UC Davis Extension Current Wine and Winegrape Research Course
UC Davis Extension is offering its Current Wine and Winegrape Research course on Feb. 13. Enjoy a full day of brief, 20-minute presentations by researchers describing their new and broad-reaching research on issues relating to wine grapes and enology projects. A wine reception, co-sponsored by the American Vineyard Foundation and the National Grape and Wine Initiative, during which you can meet the researchers, will follow the presentations.
UC Davis Extension is looking for researchers to speak at this event. Presentations will be 15 minutes long with 5 minutes allowed for questions. If you are interested in sharing your current wine and winegrape research at this venue, please complete this form. Accepted speakers do not need to register as attendees to the course.For questions, contact Kristen Farrar.
Attend a Wine Marketing Workshop in Southern Oregon
Capiche Wine Marketing is offering a wine workshop on Mar. 13 from 9 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Ashland Hills Hotel. Learn how to create loyal customers using a combination of branding, marketing and sales, how to capture and convey your unique brand and how to get recognized through targeted marketing. This workshop will provide detailed information on creating a strategic marketing plan that encompasses advertising, PR, Internet and tasting room best practices. The presenters will share inspiring examples of proven results based on solid methodology, market insights and brand-driven identity. Attendees will learn new techniques to improve employee performance, increase per-transaction sales and dramatically grow wine club membership. This presentation is designed to help you increase your winery’s direct-to-consumer and retail sales. Early bird pricing of $70 ends Feb. 10. To register, complete this short form and send it along with payment to Chris Cook.
Attend a US Department of Labor Wine Industry Forum on Jan. 31
To help you better understand labor laws and how to comply, please join the Oregon Winegrowers Association for a forum with representatives of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) on Jan. 31 at Linfield College in McMinnville. Representatives will be on hand to provide information on the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA), Field Sanitation and the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA), in addition to what to expect during a Department of Labor investigation and to answer your questions. The OWA initiated dialogue directly with Sen. Ron Wyden, Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici and the DOL in response to input from industry members experiencing disruptive and extended compliance investigations. This informational session will help wineries and growers learn more about how to protect their business and clients. The event is free for OWA members and $20 for non-members. Click here to register now.
Attend the Ninth Annual Dunn Carney Ag Summit
The Dunn Carney Ag Summit offers a morning of panel discussions about regulatory developments, legal issues and best practices in agriculture. The half-day conference will be held at the Salem Convention Center from 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Jan. 20. Topics will include a preview of 2017 legislative issues and panel discussions about water resources, critical changes in employment law for agricultural employers of all sizes and the new look of real estate transactions involving farm land. As always, Dunn Carney will have knowledgeable speakers from organizations including the Oregon Farm Bureau, the Department of Agriculture, Oregon Water Resources Board, Oregon Association of Nurseries and more. Click here to learn more or to register.
Offering an Industry Educational Event?
The OWB is dedicated to providing members of our community with educational offerings as part of its mandate. In addition to the educational seminars sponsored by the OWB, educational opportunities hosted by third-party organizations can also be promoted in the Grapevine and on the industry website. If your organization is hosting an industry educational event please contact Carrie Hardison so the OWB can help you spread the word to members of our community.
CALLS FOR WINE
Submit Wines to the International Wine Report
The International Wine Report is looking to increase the number of wines reviewed for Oregon wineries. The Oregon reviewer for this online publication Owen Bargreen also runs the second largest blog in Washington state, Washington Wine Blog, and is currently studying for his Level 3 somm certification. Some wines and wineries reviewed as part of the Oregon report will also be featured on Washington Wine Blog. The second Oregon report later this spring will focus on the 2013 and 2014 vintages for Oregon Pinot noir, and 2014 and 2015 vintages for white wines. Other varieties will also be accepted at this time for the spring report. Bottle duplicates, while not necessary, are helpful in case of bottle variation. Wines should be sent to:
The Chardonnay du Monde, or the Best Chardonnay Wines of the World, will take place on Mar. 7 – 10 in Burgundy. Since its creation, the ambition of Chardonnay du Monde, a quality-based wine competition, has been to promote and enhance the quality of Chardonnay wines from all over the world by annually awarding medals that are reliable and thus representative of diversity and quality. Deadline to submit samples is Feb. 1. For more information, contact Chardonnay du Monde.
TTB Bond Requirement Exemption
As of Jan. 1 a winery that files its TTB excise taxes annually (owes <$1,000 in excise taxes/year) or quarterly (owes ≤ $50,000 excise taxes/year) will be exempt from the bond requirement. The TTB bond exemption will not be automatically granted. Existing qualifying wineries must notify the TTB that they believe they are eligible for a bond exemption, and request a bond termination, by filing an amended Application to Establish and Operate Wine Premises form and checking the box in question nine stating the winery is not required to hold a bond. Per temporary rule 27 CFR 24.160, TTB will require that all reports, returns and tax payments are filed in order to determine if a bond exemption is in fact available. Wineries can file an amended permit application requesting a bond termination as of Jan. 1, but the bond termination request will not be fully assessed until the winery submits its final 2016 tax return and report of wine premises.
With regard to cash bonds, if an existing winery is no longer required to have a bond, it should file and pay any outstanding excise taxes. The winery should then file the amended application form and state that the winery is not required to hold a bond. Per temporary rule 27 CFR 24.159 “Release of Collateral Security,” the TTB officer will review the amended application and all returns, to determine whether all tax liability has been met and will set a date for the return of the cash bond.
A link to TTB guidance on the topic published Dec. 30, 2016 can be found here. For a link to TTB temporary regulations related to the PATH Act, click here. The TTB is seeking comments on the temporary rules by Mar. 7. If you have suggestions for changes to the published temporary rules, please notify the Oregon Winegrowers Association. For questions, contact the OWA or OWA legal counsel at Davis Wright Tremaine LLP.
Attend the WVWA 2017 Annual Membership Meeting
Willamette Valley Wines had an incredible 2016! Join the Willamette Valley Wineries Association on Feb. 7 from 2 – 5:30 p.m. at the Chehalem Cultural Center to celebrate the region’s many accomplishments and welcome the new year. Learn about branding and marketing initiatives made possible by the success of the first trade auction, review the WVWA’s 2017 budget and strategic plan, and revel in the honor of Wine Region of the Year. Special guest speakers include Steve Slater of Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits and Fritz Hatton, the country’s foremost wine auctioneer. Appetizers will be provided by Red Hills Market for a reception with Willamette Valley Industry Partners following the meeting. Each winery is asked to bring one bottle of wine to share during the reception. Click here to RSVP. For more information, contact Emily Nelson.
Attend the OSU Food and Fermentation Sciences Career Fair
If you have internship opportunities or are looking for full time employees, the OSU Food and Fermentation Science Career Fair is set for Feb. 7 from 4 – 6 p.m. As in the past, participating companies are given a table to set up information, which provides students and alumni an opportunity to stop by and chat about potential jobs or positions within your company. If your company would like to participate, contact Holly Templeton with the names of the representatives from your company who will attend, the type of positions you are recruiting for (i.e. summer jobs vs. permanent positions, or if they may be R & D, QA, regulatory, manufacturing etc.). The fee to participate is $95, which helps defray food and other costs during the event. Any additional funds collected as part of the career fair will serve as fundraising efforts for the Food and Fermentation Science Club.
Attend ORLA’s Taste Oregon Legislative Reception
Learn how you can make a difference in Oregon by joining hospitality industry peers at the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association’s Taste Oregon Legislative Reception on Feb. 28 from 5 – 7:30 p.m. at the Salem Convention Center. This is the hospitality industry’s opportunity to showcase its strength before lawmakers in Salem. Taste Oregon provides a unique opportunity to provide industry members a casual forum to meet face-to-face with the legislators who decide laws that impact hospitality businesses. For more information, contact the Oregon Restaurant and Lodging Association.
OLCC Warns Liquor Licensees of Scam Callers
The Oregon Liquor Control Commission warns liquor licensed businesses of scam phone calls from people misrepresenting themselves as members of state or federal law enforcement. The fake callers claim to be a “Special Agent” and that the licensee has outstanding fees and/or citations. The scam callers demand that the liquor licensee come down to the courthouse to meet with them or else warrants will be issued. OLCC urges any business receiving these false phone calls to notify both local police and the local OLCC office. Contact information for OLCC offices can be found on the agency website.
Revised Worker Protection Standard Rules Took Effect Jan. 2
The Worker Protection Standard (WPS), administered by the Environmental Protection Agency, was revised in 2015 to enhance the protections for farm workers and pesticide applicators from the risks of pesticides. The changes went into effect on Jan. 2 and apply to all farms, including vineyards. The WPS now requires yearly training of agricultural workers, mandatory record keeping for pesticide use and enhanced posting requirements. Click here for more information and various resources complied by Dr. Patty Skinkis, viticulture extension specialist and associate professor at Oregon State University.
Report 2016 Spray Drift Damage
With the 2016 growing season in the rear view mirror, please take a few moments to complete the Oregon Winegrowers Association’s internal wine industry survey if you experienced spray drift damage at your vineyard. Timely reporting is one of our industry’s most valuable tools in highlighting the scope and magnitude of drift incidents and allowing us to better educate the various audiences who can contribute to solutions. OWA also encourages growers to report via the Oregon Department of Agriculture’s website if you encounter problems. Additional resources are available on the OWA website to help with education, neighbor communication and reporting.
An Update Regarding Industry Requests of the Oregon Wine Board for Funding
The Oregon Wine Board is committed to effectively investing the resources with which it is entrusted to support technical research, education and marketing programs consistent with its mission to advance the interests of all grapegrowing regions and grape varieties across the state.
The Board and its Research Committee have a proven RFA process for soliciting and evaluating submissions that deal with viticultural and enological research projects. The Board does not publish or administer an RFA process outside of the industry’s Research Committee.
However, the Board has found that various groups are sometimes interested in making formal requests for support or funding of projects unrelated to technical research. If your non-profit organization plans to submit such a proposal to the OWB, click here for some important background information and a summary of the Board’s position on considering such proposals.
WILLAMETTE VALLEY WINERIES ASSOCIATION ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING
Chehalem Cultural Center in Newberg
OREGON WINE SEMINAR AND TRADE TASTING
OREGON WINE SEMINAR AND TRADE TASTING
FEBRUARY 21 – 22
OREGON WINE SYMPOSIUM
Oregon Convention Center in Portland
OREGON CHARDONNAY CELEBRATION
The Allison Inn & Spa in Newberg
OREGON WINE SEMINAR
GO WEST TASTING
MARCH 19 – 21
MARCH 31 – APRIL 1
SECOND ANNUAL WILLAMETTE: THE PINOT NOIR BARREL AUCTION
The Allison Inn & Spa in Newberg
APRIL 9 – 10
REVEAL WALLA WALLA VALLEY WINE
Throughout the Walla Walla Valley
MAY 1 – 31
OREGON WINE MONTH
MAY 4 – 6
MAY 5 – 7
Throughout the Walla Walla Valley
JUNE 24 – 27
OREGON PINOT CAMP
Throughout the Willamette Valley
JULY 28 – 30
Linfield College in McMinnville
AUGUST 21 – 27
OREGON WINE EXPERIENCE
Thank you to our 2017 Oregon Wine Symposium Sponsors
The Oregon Wine Board’s Grapevine newsletter is a great way to make members of the wine community aware of relevant opportunities, programs and events. However, OWB does not endorse or profit from any third party supplier, materials, events, programs or institutions mentioned here.