Your source for CAWG and industry news
June 22, 2017
CALENDAR

July 11
CAWG PAC fundraiser, Goehring Vineyards, Inc., Lodi

July 17
CAWG PAC Golf Tournament, Napa

July 17
CAWG Awards of Excellence Program and Dinner, Napa

July 18
CAWG Summer Conference, Napa

July 19
CAWG Board of Directors meeting, Napa

 
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ACTION ALERT 
Take Action Now! Stop SB 252 (Dodd)
 
SB 252 (Bill Dodd, D-Napa) would create an unprecedented state mandate on local management of water basins. SB 252 threatens property rights and would hinder local efforts to achieve sustainability in each basin.  On Tuesday, June 27, the Assembly Water, Parks, and Wildlife Committee will vote on SB 252.  It is critical that committee members hear from CAWG members as soon as possible. Please click on the voter voice link below for instructions.
 


THE FRONT PAGE 
CAWG Seeks Winegrape Exemption from FDA's Produce Safety Rule
 
CAWG logo no words
CAWG has requested the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) exempt winegrapes from its produce safety rule under the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) and place them on a list of produce commodities rarely consumed raw. On June 15, CAWG President John Aguirre sent a letter and 10-page white paper to FDA detailing CAWG's request. Adding winegrapes to the list of more than 30 commodities rarely consumed  raw would exempt growers and wineries from having to comply with unnecessary and burdensome requirements and paperwork under the rule.   CAWG's press release about the request has been picked up by several wine and agricultural news outlets.
 
 


Government Relations Capitol Report
 
SB 295
This week the   Assembly Labor and Employment Committee heard and passed SB 295 (Monning), which creates onerous and needless reporting requirements for farm labor contractors (FLCs). Under this bill a vineyard management company would have to report annually to the labor commissioner on the number of workers being trained in sexual harassment prevention. Additionally, FLCs would have to provide the labor commissioner with the documents used in the training. Minor administrative mistakes in reporting would be punishable with fines, a loss of license and a private attorney general action.
 
CAWG and the California Farm Bureau Federation are opposed to SB 295 as this bill is entirely unnecessary. Existing law already provides for fine, penalties and criminal actions for unlicensed FLCs or any FLC that fails to provide the training required under law.  
 
Julie Nord, co-owner of Nord Vineyard Services, testified in opposition (watch video) at the Capitol. Thank you, Julie, for your thoughtful presentation.  
 
While the bill was approved by the committee, CAWG will continue to oppose SB 295. 

-- Michael Miiller / michael@cawg.org / 916-379-8995


PD/GWSS Board Raises Assessment Rate for 2017 Harvest
 
From Ted Rieger in Wine Business: CDFA's Pierce's Disease (PD)/Glassy-winged Sharpshooter (GWSS) Board voted to recommend a wine and grape industry assessment rate for the 2017 harvest of $1.50 per $1,000 of crop value at its June 19 meeting. It is an increase of $0.25 from the $1.25 per $1,000 of crop value rate assessed for 2016. The board voted to increase the assessment at the recommendation of CDFA staff, based on the board's current budget projections and future funding obligations for multi-year research projects and contracts, and taking into consideration possible outcomes related to uncertainties regarding federal and state income sources.
 


California Represented at Farm Bill Hearing on University Research
 
In its ongoing review of farm bill programs, the House Agriculture Committee held a hearing today on agricultural/university research. Glenda Humiston, vice president of University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources (UCANR), testified and provided examples of programs that are particularly important to California. Those include the Specialty Crop Research Initiative, Specialty Crop Block Grant Program and the National Clean Plant Network. Humiston also spoke about the eradication of the European Grapevine Moth, a successful multidisciplinary collaborative project. " For more than a century, California's $47 billion agricultural sector has depended on UCANR, in partnership with our UC campuses, for the stream of new technologies and research breakthroughs needed to stay competitive and be responsible stewards of the land," Humiston said.
 
 


Hackathon Brings Together Food, Ag and Tech Innovators to Design Apps for Ag
 
Do you have a brilliant idea for a mobile app that would help winegrape growers? You might be able to turn your idea into a real problem solver. The California Apps for Ag Hackathon will be held July 28-30 in Sacramento. The competition is being hosted by UC Agriculture and Natural Resources and the California State Fair. Growers and others in the agricultural industry are invited to join software developers, designers and entrepreneurs at the event. On July 30, teams will pitch their idea to industry experts in front of a live audience at the California State Fair. Prizes will be awarded to the top three apps: $10,000 for first place, $5,000 for second, and $2,500 for third.
 


INDUSTRY ARTICLES

Last year marked the fifth consecutive year Santa Barbara County's ag industry has struggled with labor shortages.
Santa Barbara Independent, June 22
 
The extreme heat wave in the Sacramento region has growers on edge.
CBS13, June 21
 
Increasingly, large wine producers nationally and internationally are relying on acquisitions of Napa Valley wineries, brands and vineyard land to achieve their strategies for growing their high-end wine businesses.
Napa Valley Register, June 19
 
Growers and dairies lobby for a path to legalization for the undocumented workers who power their businesses.
Bloomberg BusinessWeek, June 20
 
Feature article about Bradford and Randall Lange and their business.
Lodi News-Sentinel, June 17
 
California lawmakers passed a spending plan for the coming fiscal year, meeting the state's budget approval deadline with a $183.2 billion package. The main budget bill passed the Senate 28-10 and the Assembly 59-20.
Sacramento Bee, June 15
 
Steve Lohr, chairman and CEO of J. Lohr Vineyards and Wines, was elected chair.
Press release, June 14


WATER NEWS
California Vineyards Among Applicants for SWEEP Grants
 
Several vineyard operations are among the applicants for State Water Efficiency and Enhancement Program (SWEEP) funding. The 2017 SWEEP will disperse up to $4.5 million to California agricultural operations investing in irrigation systems that reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save water.
 


Water Articles and Resources

Today the House plans a vote on legislation   sponsored by Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Calif.) that aims to help the state capture more water to save for a future dry season. The bill is expected to pass the House. A similar bill is in the Senate.


 
 

RESOURCES
Have a License to Apply Pesticides? Renew Early!

Mail your application before November so that your license or certificate can be issued before it expires. If you submit before October, you will be renewed by early December and can then register with your county before Dec. 31. Submitting earlier allows DPR staff additional time to notify you of any issues that could delay processing your license.
 



UNIVERSITIES
New Research from UC Viticulture Extension Specialist

UC Davis viticulture extension specialist Dr. Kaan Kurtural and colleagues have published "Assessing Variability of Grape Skin Flavonoids at the Vineyard Scale Based on Plant Water Status Mapping." The team of researchers used a fundamental approach to look at whether vineyard water status variability affects primary and secondary metabolism in grapes. The results could provide guidance on vineyard water status to discriminate harvest or direction to vineyard operators to modify irrigation management to equilibrate berry composition at harvest. 
 


CAWG EVENTS
CAWG Summer Conference a Few Weeks Away! There's  Still Time to Register!

Read all the details on CAWG's website


Support the CAWG PAC! Join Us on July 11 in Lodi and July 17 in Napa

A strong CAWG PAC is imperative to our political agenda and goals.  Join us at these upcoming  events:

July 11: Fundraiser at Goehring Vineyards in Lodi.  

July 17: Golf tournament at Silverado Resort golf course.



UPCOMING EVENTS

Lodi Vineyard & Wine Economics Symposium
WHEN: June 29 / 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
WHERE: Wine & Roses Conference Center, Lodi
 
Program features wine experts and influencers active in shaping the future of the wine business in Lodi and surrounding regions.
 


2017 Forbes AgTech Summit
WHEN: June 28-29
WHERE: Salinas

Silicon Valley and global agriculture converge to tackle critical challenges and showcase the latest innovations for farmers, investors and stakeholders of global food systems.