JANUARY 10, 2019
CAWG Alerts Industry: Crush Report Likely to be Impacted by Government Shutdown
In a Jan. 9 press release, CAWG alerted the industry that the ongoing federal government shutdown may affect the Crush Report. TODAY (Jan. 10) is the deadline for wineries to submit grape purchase data from the 2018 harvest to USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) Pacific Region office. However, NASS staff responsible for producing the report are currently on unpaid furlough until funding is restored. A continuation of the shutdown makes timely publication of the Crush Report highly uncertain. 

Grapes Remain No. 2 California Commodity in 2017
From the California Agricultural Statistics Review 2017-2018, the top five commodities in 2017 were: 

Milk and cream: $6.57 billion
Grapes/all: $5.79 billion > up 3.1 percent from 2016
Almonds/shelled: $5.6 billion
Berries, all strawberries: $3.1 billion
Cattle and calves: $2.63 billion

On pages 77-81, the report features the grape crush overview, summary of grape tonnages and prices, leading grape varieties and districts, leading varieties crushed and other statistics.

The state’s 77,100 farms and ranches received a total of $50.13 billion for their output in 2017, up 5.7 percent. The average value of California farm real estate increased 10.1 percent in 2017 compared to the previous year, to $8,700 per acre. The average value for irrigated cropland was $13,300 per acre. 

Wine Drops to No. 4 Export Commodity in 2017
From the California Ag Exports 2017-2018, the top five export commodities in 2017 were:
Almonds: $4.48 billion
Dairy and products: $1.6 billion
Pistachios: $1.51 billion
Wine: $1.4 billion > down 6.2 percent from 2016
Walnuts: $1.37 billion

In 2016, wine was ranked No. 2. In addition to other statistics, the report shows the major destinations for wine exports remained the European Union, Canada, China/Hong Kong and Japan. The state’s agricultural exports totaled $20.56 billion in 2017, a 2.2 percent increase from the year before. 

Government Relations Report
In only his second day in office, Gov. Gavin Newsom  reappointed Karen Ross  to secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA). Ross was first appointed by Gov. Brown in 2011 and has a strong relationship with winegrape growers and the ag industry. She was president of CAWG from 1996 to 2009 and vice president of the Agricultural Council of California from 1989 to 1996.
CAWG board chair Bill Berryhill said, “A person of formidable talent, Karen thoroughly understands the ag industry and has been a national leader on ag issues. She is a terrific addition to Newsom’s team.”
In reappointing Ross, Newsom said, “She has unmatched leadership experience in agricultural issues nationally, internationally, and here in California.”
Ross is currently the third-longest serving secretary in CDFA history. Her reappointment could make hers the longest tenure in the history of the office. She is only the third secretary to be reappointed by a new governor and the first secretary in nearly 30 years to do so. Ross was unanimously confirmed in 2011 when she was first appointed by Brown.
Congratulations to Secretary Ross.

Gavin Newsom was sworn in as California’s 40th governor on Monday. In his first week, his office announced the following  actions  by the governor:
  • Reappointed Karen Ross, secretary of CDFA.
  • Appointed Jared Blumenfeld, secretary of the California Environmental Protection Agency.
  • Prohibited all state agencies from doing business with the PlumpJack Group, which is owned by the governor.
  • Directed state agencies to identify geographic areas with populations that are particularly at risk during natural disasters and to take steps to protect those vulnerable communities.
  • Improved fire detection efforts by putting cutting-edge technology in the hands of emergency responders by next fire season.
  • Initiated plan to modernize and reinvent DMV.
  • Provide health care coverage to young undocumented adults through Medi-Cal.
  • Created the Office of the California Surgeon General.
Today Newsom also released his first  state budget , which includes onetime spending of $15 billion in unexpected, discretionary revenues due to a strong economy in 2018. The budget also proposed a new tax on drinking water to clean up contaminated water systems. The 2019-20 spending plan will be reviewed and changed by the California Legislature in the coming months. A final budget must be approved by June 15. 

-Michael Miiller / michael@cawg.org / 916-379-8995
California Assembly, Senate Committees Announced
California Senate President pro Tempore Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) and Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon (D-Lakewood) have announced leadership positions and committee assignments for the 2019-2020 legislative session. 

Senate Ag Committee: Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton), chair; Scott Wilk (R-Santa Clarita), vice chair.

Assembly Ag Committee: Susan Talamantes Eggman (D-Stockton), chair; Devon Mathis (R-Visalia), vice chair.

DWR Finalizes Basin Prioritizations Under SGMA
The final basin prioritization for most California groundwater basins -- as required under the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act (SGMA) – was announced by the California Department of Water Resources (DWR) on Jan. 4. Last week’s announcement finalizes the prioritization for 458 basins, identifying 56 that are required to create groundwater sustainability plans under SGMA.

DWR’s  basin prioritization page features an  interactive online map (dashboard) and frequently asked questions.

Spread the Word! CAWG Foundation Scholarship Applications Available
Each year the CAWG Foundation awards scholarships to several high school seniors whose parents or legal guardians are employed by California winegrape growers. The application deadline is March 8, 2018. Please share the information and link with your employees. Since the program's inception in 1998, the foundation has awarded $433,000 in scholarships.


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Vineyards & Wine
Wine Institute, Jan. 10

AgNet West, Jan. 9

USDA Specialty Crop Research Initiative project.
AgNet West, Jan. 4

Report and videocast registration for Jan. 16 event.

January 2019
Details and evaluations of the newest farming apps for Androids, iPhones and iPads.
Growing Produce, Jan. 4

WGA Leadership Luncheon
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 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.
WHERE: Hyatt Regency, Capitol View Room
Meeting on Winegrape Grower Contracts and Enforcement
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@cawg.org  or (916) 379-8995

UCCE Grape Day - Sonoma County
Research-based information on issues important to the production of coastal winegrapes.

WHEN: Feb. 9 / 7:00 a.m. to 12 p.m.
WHERE: Santa Rosa Veterans Memorial Building, 1351 Maple Ave.
COST: $42 by Feb. 6 / $47 at door (includes breakfast) 

UCD and UC ANR Grapevine Production Short Course
Four full days of instruction with hands on demos in the vineyard.

WHEN: Feb. 12-15 
WHERE: Springhill Suites in Napa and Oakville Experiment Station
COST: $1,200

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 Winegrape Day in the Capitol, Sacramento

April 10
CAWG Foundation Wine Reception, Sacramento

April 11
CAWG Board of Directors meeting, Sacramento