Your source for CAWG and industry news
January 3 , 2019

January 8
Crop Insurance Seminar, Upper Lake

January 17
CAWG / Lodi District Grape Growers Joint Meeting, Lodi

January 29-31
Unified Wine & Grape Symposium, Sacramento

January 30
Winegrape Growers of America Leadership Luncheon, Sacramento

February 26
CAWG Board of Directors meeting, Sacramento

April 10
CAWG Day in the Capitol, Sacramento

April 10
CAWG Foundation Wine Reception, Sacramento

April 11
CAWG Board of Directors Meeting, Sacramento

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~ New year, new look ~ 
Starting with next week's issue, CAWG eNews will have a new and improved design!

Click on image to watch crop insurance video

Crop Insurance Deadline is Jan. 31
If you are planning to purchase winegrape crop insurance, you must  
sign up no later than Jan. 31   to have coverage for the 2019 crop year. Whether  you are new to crop insurance or you have been purchasing it for many years, CAWG is committed to bringing you helpful information. You can access a recording of CAWG's crop insurance webinar from 2017 or contact Greg Merrill at Pan American at (559) 492-5384.  
NEXT WEEK >  Seminar on Lowering Your Farming Risk with Crop Insurance
CAWG and several Lake and Mendocino agricultural organizations are co-hosting a crop insurance seminar where growers can listen to experts about how crop insurance can be used to help lower farming risk. 
Presenters include representatives from Pan American, CAWG, USDA Farm Service Agency, USDA Risk Management Agency and NAU Country Insurance.
WHEN: Jan. 8 / 9 to 11:30 a.m.
WHERE: The Lodge at Blue Lakes, Upper Lake

Government Shutdown and the Impact on USDA
The ongoing government shutdown has impacted many USDA activities, including implementation of the farm bill. The agency issued an  update about how the lapse in federal funding will affect services, programs and employees. In addition, all USDA agencies developed  procedures and contingency plans.

Conjunctive Labeling Now in Effect in Monterey County
Effective Jan. 1, all wines labeled with an AVA located  entirely  within Monterey County must now also include the term "Monterey County" on the label. According to the  Monterey County Vintners & Growers Association (MCVGA),  the conjunctive labeling effort began in February 2015. The original bill was authored by Assemblyman Mark Stone (D-Monterey Bay), requiring Monterey County wines be labeled to identify the region where the grapes were grown. The state law was passed by the California Legislature in August 2015 and officially enacted in January 2016. Enforcement of the law was delayed for three years to allow wineries time to change their labels.

MCVGA's website has additional information on the conjunctive labeling, including wine label samples and a flow chart infographic.

Government Relations Report
California laws are interpreted by the regulatory agencies that enforce them. At times, those interpretations stray from the intent of the law. One such case may be how SB 1343 (Mitchell, D- Los Angeles) is being interpreted. The new law took effect Jan. 1, 2019 and requires sexual harassment prevention training for all new employees working for companies with five or more employees.
The bill also requires the Department of Fair Employment and Housing to create an online training course that can be used to meet the requirements of the new law. To allow time for that to be developed, SB 1343 does not require training until 2020. Regulators and lawmakers are currently reviewing the bill, and some believe a strict reading of the bill inadvertently requires training in 2019. To make matters worse, it is also not clear whether training must be repeated for workers who were already trained in 2018.
Frequently in cases like this, the Legislature will act quickly and pass "clean-up legislation" to fix the problem. CAWG is working with the Legislature and several industry groups to see that this is resolved. In the meantime, please check with your HR advisors to determine whether training is required for your workers.   

-- Michael Miiller / / 916-379-8995 

CDFA Seeks Applicants for Water, Soils Programs
Farmers can now submit grant applications for the following climate smart agriculture programs. 

Applications are due by 5 p.m. on Friday, March 8.

SWEEP provides grants to implement irrigation systems that save water and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Funded projects can include elements such as soil, plant or  weather sensors; micro-irrigation systems; pump retrofits or replacements; renewable energy and variable frequency drives (among others). 
Healthy Soils Program (HSP)
The HSP provides grants for implementation of conservation management that improve soil health, sequester carbon and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The HSP will be implemented under two sections:

DPR Pesticide Residues Report: Positive Results
Results from the Department of Pesticide Regulation's 2017 Pesticide Residues in Fresh Produce report show that 96 percent of all samples had no detectable pesticide residues or residue levels that were at or below U.S. EPA tolerance levels. DPR collected nearly 3,700 samples representing 135 fruits and vegetables. Illegal residues were detected on only 4 percent of samples; most of the illegal residues were on imported produce. 


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CAWG members must register by Jan. 22 to receive a $200 discount. To register by phone, call 888-559-9530. If you need your Unified code, contact CAWG at 916-379-8995.

Lance Winters, master distiller at St. George Spirits. Register now before it sells out!
Daily/hourly program.
Final days to take advantage of key sponsorship and ad opportunities! Visit the Unified website or discuss with Jenny Devine at (916) 379-8995.

WGA Leadership Luncheon to Feature Dr. Dan Sumner and Rich Smith Award Presentation
Dan Sumner, director of the University of California Agricultural Issues Center,  is the featured guest presenter at the upcoming Winegrape Growers of America Leadership Luncheon in Sacramento. Sumner, who is also a professor in the UC Davis Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, will discuss current trade policy and disputes and the impact on U.S. agriculture and wine markets. The luncheon will also include a presentation honoring the recipient of the Rich Smith Distinguished Service Award. CAWG members and their guests are welcome to attend the luncheon.

WHEN: Jan. 30 / 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. (held during Unified Symposium)
WHERE: Hyatt Regency, Capitol View Room

First Snow Survey of 2019
There's a good amount of snow, but water content is below average. The Department of Water Resources (DWR) today conducted its first manual snow survey in the Sierra Nevada east of Sacramento. The survey recorded 25.5 inches of snow depth and a snow water equivalent of 9 inches, which is 80 percent of the average at this site.  Statewide, the Sierra snowpack is 67 percent of average, well above the 24 percent at this time last year.
"The last few years have shown how variable California's climate truly is and what a profound impact climate change has on our water resources," said DWR Director Karla Nemeth. "California's significant weather variability means we can go from historic drought to record rainfall, with nothing in between. Climate change will continue to exacerbate the extremes, creating additional challenges for maintaining water supply reliability and the need for innovative solutions."

DWR Seeks Comments on Water Plan Update 2018
The public review draft of the   California Water Plan Update 2018 is now available and DWR is accepting public comments through Jan. 21. Email comments to The update recommends a series of actions to address the most critical issues facing water management in California. It outlines a path for new or modernized infrastructure, restored ecosystems, efficient regulation, cooperation across water management sectors, and greater return on investment. DWR publishes a plan update every five years. 
WEBINAR ON PLAN AND THE COMMENT PROCESS: Jan. 8 / 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (online registration)


CAWG members quoted. Lodi winemakers and grape growers, feeling an economic squeeze on their famous old-vine zinfandel vineyards, spent a day strategizing how to save those vines by increasing the quality of grapes they produce and boosting the prices they command.
Wine Business Monthly, Jan. 2
His PlumpJack Group owns wineries, restaurants, spirits shops and boutique hotels in San Francisco, Napa, Palm Springs, Lake Tahoe and Marin County.
Sacramento Bee, Dec. 20
The award from The Drinks Business Green Awards honored her for her role in shaping Fetzer Vineyards' forward-looking approach to sustainability.
Press release, Dec. 28
The association's mission is to grow and strengthen the wine market in the U.S. on behalf of all segments of the industry by providing ongoing U.S. wine market research.
Press release, Dec. 18

The American Farm Bureau Federation is urging the DOL to continue allowing farmers to satisfy their legal obligations under the H-2A guest worker program by recruiting U.S. workers through print ads.
Press release, Dec. 26
The pay bump is for its full-time, year-round workers.  The pay increase comes as farmers across the state  continue to face a tight labor market. Many farmers have raised wages as they try to attract workers from the now-smaller pool.

SAVE THE DATE!  CAWG / Lodi District Grape Growers Joint Meeting
Join CAWG and the Lodi District Grape Growers for a meeting about winegrape grower contracts and enforcement, plus the role of the California Winegrape Inspection Advisory Board. 

Speakers include Dale Stern of Downey Brand, CDFA Market Enforcement Branch and John Gilstrap, California Winegrape Inspection Advisory Board.
WHEN: Thursday, Jan. 17
8:30 a.m. -- Registration, coffee and pastries
9:00 a.m. -- Meeting
WHERE: Lodi Grape Festival--Burgundy Hall 413 E. Lockeford St, Lodi
RSVP: Natalie Collins  at  or (916) 379-8995

Ag Laws and Regulations for Growers and Farm Labor Contractors
Ag Safe is offering classes covering a dozen topics that will be held throughout the year in Fresno, Paso Robles, Monterey, Indio, Bakersfield, Modesto and Imperial. English and Spanish classes. Cost is $270 for members/$310 for non-members.  The course meets the California DLSE 9-hours of continuing education required for California FLC licensing.