Spend a minute during this busy season with these heartfelt words from an industry peer about the summer fires. They are inspiring. While coming from one of our most adversely affected regions, the sentiments are not unique to any AVA. They reflect the resolve of farmers and winemakers across our state who have had to endure conditions rarely, if ever, witnessed in Oregon:
“One of the strengths of this region is our tenacity. We live in an area of extremes and the people who choose to call this place home do so with pride and determination. We don’t have many pastoral properties — we have 3,000-foot cliffs, heavy winds and rough terrain. The outpouring of support from within our community and from our neighbors keeps us even more focused on the task at hand — to continue to introduce people to this wonderful region and act as stewards of our homeland….we didn’t let three months of blizzards and ice storms get us down last winter and we’ll come back from the fires as well.”
Turning now to the vineyards and a reminder about your incoming crop. Some in our wine community may not be aware that Oregon law, specifically Oregon Revised Statute 473.045, authorizes taxes in the amount of $12.50 per ton on wine grapes sold to any winery not licensed under ORS chapter 471, including wineries in other states. Grape tax funds are used by the Oregon Wine Board for marketing, education and research programs. Payments by growers and wineries, supplemented by new funding streams, are allowing the OWB to significantly expand and enrich its assortment of scientific research projects based on recommendations from the industry’s statewide Research Committees.
Under current law, grape sellers are to report all sales on a form provided by the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC). Column E is reserved for the required reporting of vinifera or hybrid grapes sold out of state.
The statute also requires vineyard owners that sell grapes out of state to retain harvest and sales records for inspection or audit by the OLCC. A grower failing to report sales to the OLCC, and/or failing to satisfy the corresponding tax liability, is subject to charge with a Class C misdemeanor and a fine of up to $1,000, plus interest of 5% on any late tax payments for the first month and 1% for each subsequent month.
On a lighter note, Oregon Winegrowers Association members should not miss the chance to win a $100 gift card, available to a few lucky people. Earn a shot at one by completing OWA’s annual membership satisfaction survey, which takes less than five minutes to complete.
Finally, please see further down in this newsletter for the final reminder to those interested in sending our industry’s Nominating Committee an application to serve a three-year term on the Oregon Wine Board.
From the Directors and management team at the Oregon Wine Board, have a safe and prosperous harvest.
Oregon Wine Board
Registration Open for the 2018 Oregon Wine Symposium
Registration is open for the 2018 Oregon Wine Symposium, Feb. 20-21 at the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. The Symposium is a must-attend event for everyone from winery and vineyard owners to sales managers, vineyard managers to marketers, winemakers to tasting room staff. The Symposium also features the Northwest’s biggest wine industry trade show with more than 170 exhibitors.Register your team today.
Oregon Wines Fly Free Promotion
This fall, we are working in collaboration with our partners at Travel Oregon and Alaska Airlines to promote Oregon Wines Fly Free through a consumer sweepstakes. Give future visitors to your tasting room some inspiration for planning their next trip to wine country by sharing this opportunity with your audiences on social media or via your newsletter before it ends on Oct 12. Preview and share the sweepstakes.
Now Accepting Nominations for 2018 Oregon Wine A-List Awards
Think about your best restaurant accounts around the country, your favorite local gem and that wine director who always seems to go above and beyond with their Oregon wine list and programming. Sound like someplace – or someone – you know? The window is open until Oct. 31 to recognize their dedication to Oregon with a nomination for a 2018 Oregon Wine A-List Award. Submit a nomination.
Measures for Mitigating Smoke Taint in Wines
OWB education manager Bree Boskov MW has compiled current research, articles and suggestions on how to handle grapes to mitigate smoke taint in wine, which you may find useful as you prepare for crush. She has also prepared a summary of the latest research on mitigating the effects of smoke taint in the cellar. Read the summary and view resources.
Although the media calls to OWB on smoke taint have lessened, we understand it’s easy for comments to be misinterpreted about this potentially sensitive issue. Therefore if you are contacted by the media regarding the impact of smoke on the 2017 harvest and you prefer not to speak on the issue, please direct these inquiries to OWB communications manager Sally Murdoch.
OSU Conducting Research into Oregon Wine Clubs
Business and economics researchers at OSU are embarking on a new study that aims to deepen the Oregon wine industry’s understanding of wine clubs. Specifically, it will delve into what features and benefits attract and retain profitable wine club members, and what best practices can be identified for maximizing the long-term value of a club. Learn more about the study and how to participate.
September 2017 Weather and Climate Forecast
On Sept. 4, Dr. Greg Jones of Linfield College published an updated weather and climate summary and forecast. This report looks back at August conditions, provides an updated drought watch, and forecasts conditions for September, October and November 2017. Read the report.
CALLS FOR WINE
Wine Enthusiast’s 2018 Tasting and Review Schedule
OSU’s department of food science and technology is seeking nominations and applications for a Fermentation Instructor/Advisor. The position will support the instructional and advising needs of the undergraduate Fermentation Science option program in Food Science and Technology. See the job description and qualifications.
Oregon Wine Board Releases 2016-17 Annual Report
The Oregon Wine Board’s annual report recaps the achievements of the past fiscal year across marketing, education and research. It also recognizes the Directors and committee members who have dedicated countless volunteer hours towards advancing the industry. Read the annual report.
Oregon Wine Industry Awards Nominations Now Open
Each year at the Oregon Wine Symposium, industry leaders are recognized for their contributions to the Oregon wine industry. Know someone who deserves to be celebrated for their dedication to and advancement of our industry? Make a nomination by Nov. 15. Read about the categories and submit a nomination.
Save the Date: Oregon Winegrowers Association Annual Meeting
Save the date for OWA’s annual meeting and legislative reception on Jan. 10 in Salem. Learn about OWA’s legislative priorities, compliance issues and member benefits, and share industry goals and concerns with decision makers. Put the event on your calendar.
OWA Membership Satisfaction Survey
The OWA is asking for full member participation in its annual survey, which they use to evaluate current programs and create more advantageous membership benefits. The survey should take about five minutes, and OWA is giving away $100 gift cards to three lucky people completing the survey. Read about OWA’s recent work and get the survey link.
We’d like to get to know you. Wineries are invited to OWB’s office to share their wines and brand story with us at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesdays. This was formerly set for Fridays but we changed the day to help avoid weekend traffic. This is a great opportunity for you to get to know our organization better, ask questions of us and share your suggestions. Learn more and sign up for a visit.