Home Industry News Releases Winners Announced for Ninth Annual California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Leadership Awards

Winners Announced for Ninth Annual California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Leadership Awards

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Treasury Americas, Tablas Creek Vineyard, Cakebread Cellars and Niner Wine Estates Named 2023 Winners

March 23rd – SAN FRANCISCO — Today, one week before California’s Down to Earth Month begins, four of the state’s premier wineries were awarded California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Leadership Awards, joining 32 past winners from throughout the Golden State. These awardees are recognized for their advanced sustainability practices and innovation based on a comprehensive judging process focused on both sustainable viticulture and winemaking. Presented by several California wine organizations devoted to sustainability, four green medals are awarded annually in the following categories: Leader, Environment, Community and Business.

Each recipient receives an engraved Green Medal and is recognized for their contributions to California wines’ world leading efforts on wine sustainability. A customized award ceremony also helps to share their achievement with staff, customers, media and other stakeholders of their choice.

“It’s a pleasure to recognize the California wine community’s cutting-edge leaders in sustainability through the California Green Medal Awards,” said Allison Jordan, California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance’s (CSWA) Executive Director. “Their stories illustrate the perfect synergy between growing exceptional winegrapes and crafting quality wines at different price points with an enduring commitment to resource conservation, environmental protection and quality of life for their employees and community.”

Winners of the 2023 California Green Medals are:

LEADER AWARD, given to the vineyard or winery that excels in the three “Es” of sustainability — Environmentally sound, socially Equitable and Economically viable practices.

Treasury Americas

With vineyards and wineries in California’s North and Central Coasts, and as one of the largest Napa Valley growers, Treasury Americas is a demonstrated leader in sustainability. The company set ambitious targets of 100% renewable electricity by 2024 and Net Zero by 2030. It collaborates with universities and industry experts to investigate new technologies, accelerating the transition to a low-carbon future and sharing these learnings with peers. Treasury partners with groups such as the Napa Resource Conservation District and North Coast Soil Health Hub on soil health, biochar and compost studies and shares information using its demonstration site. Committed to the restoration of the Napa River, it removed vineyards to create valuable setbacks and replanted thousands of native trees to capture carbon, support salmon spawning and enhance bird habitat. Treasury Americas is committed to building a healthy, safe, inclusive and equitable workplace culture. It encourages employees to propose solutions to key sustainability challenges, which helps broaden employees’ networks and skills. The company also helps support the broader community by providing two days of paid volunteer time off per year and matching donations to fundraising activities. Treasury Americas’ public sustainability reports provide depth and transparency to the countless sustainability focused projects and initiatives carried out each year. We celebrate the significant sustainability achievements of Treasury Americas with the 2023 California Green Medal Leader Award.

ENVIRONMENT AWARD, given to the vineyard or winery that best demonstrates Environmental Stewardship through maximized environmental benefits from implementing sustainable practices.

Tablas Creek Vineyard

Situated 12 miles inland from the Pacific Ocean near Paso Robles, Tablas Creek Vineyard demonstrates an unparalleled stewardship to the environment through leading-edge practices and certifications. Tablas Creek is a trailblazer of many firsts in its region, such as helping Regenerative Organic Alliance craft standards and becoming the world’s first Regenerative Organic Certified winery. Tablas Creek shares its experience with the community by hosting seminars on topics such as organic and biodynamic viticulture, dry-farming, biochar and using animals such as owls, hawks and sheep in the vineyard to manage pests and weeds while reducing greenhouse gas emissions and restoring nutrients to the soil naturally. It maintains 90 acres of pristine oak woodland on its property. Efforts to reduce its carbon footprint include a 100% solar-powered winery where all plastic water bottles have been replaced with reusable stainless-steel canteens, the use of lightweight bottle glass and conservation of water by steam-cleaning barrels. Tablas Creek also captures wastewater for reuse in a wetland area that provides habitat for native species. For over 30 years, Tablas Creek Vineyard has shared its sustainability initiatives with the community and participated in numerous collaborations with the academic and viticultural institutions in the area. Tablas Creek Vineyard is the recipient of the 2023 California Green Medal Environment Award for its proven commitment to environmental stewardship.

COMMUNITY AWARD, given to the vineyard or winery that is a Good Neighbor and Employer using the most innovative practices that enhance relations with employees, neighbors and/or communities.

Cakebread Cellars

Cakebread Cellars is a family-owned winery located in Napa Valley’s Rutherford AVA, committed to being stewards of the land and the community since 1973. In addition to its commitment to environmental leadership as a silver member of the IWCA (International Wineries for Climate Action), Cakebread Cellars cultivates a dynamic workplace culture with talented employees by focusing on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion through ongoing DEI workshops and floating holidays that enable staff to select its preferred cultural and religious observations. Cakebread Cellars conducted a company-wide survey to solicit feedback on DEI initiatives and created an employee-led DEI Council with four sub-committees that address individual areas of continuous improvement. It worked with DEI consultants to expand hiring practices, create a monthly calendar of DEI-inspired events and start a harvest internship program that provides scholarships for BIPOC harvest interns. The company continues to evolve its definition of community and ways to support it by contributing to over 80 organizations, including national organizations such as World Central Kitchen, and holiday drives with Boys and Girls Club and by contributing to local nonprofits focused on enhancing the livability of Napa Valley. Cakebread Cellars empowers its employees to give back with two paid days off per year for them to volunteer with preferred nonprofits. For its exemplary community leadership, Cakebread Cellars is the recipient of the 2023 California Green Medal Community Award.

BUSINESS AWARD, given to the vineyard or winery that best demonstrates Smart Business through efficiencies, cost savings and innovation from implementing sustainable practices.

Niner Wine Estates

Niner Wine Estates, located on California’s Central Coast, is a family-owned winery specializing in 100% estate grown wines. Since its inception, the company has taken a long-term and market-leading approach to caring for employees and the broader community while limiting its environmental impact. As a SIP Certified vineyard and winery, Niner Wine Estates is committed to continuously improving its sustainability. All buildings are LEED Silver Certified, saving energy and reducing cost. In the last five years, Niner Wine Estates has made major investments to reduce its environmental footprint. These investments include installing a solar system that produces 560,000 kilowatt hours annually and a second water collection system increasing rainwater capture for irrigation. Two years ago, it created a staff position to collect, analyze and report data on resource use to help managers make the most sustainably minded decisions. Niner creates a welcoming culture for its employees, offering a robust benefits package and in 2020 paid part-time employees during pandemic closures as if they were salaried employees. Niner also makes annual donations of $2,000 per employee to the charity of their choice. The company’s principles are demonstrating how these sustainable business decisions lead to higher quality wines, happier employees and a thriving business. Demonstrating the importance of sustainability in passing on a vibrant business to future generations, Niner Wine Estates is the recipient of the 2023 California Green Medal Business Award.

About the California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Leadership Awards

The California Green Medal recognizes the leadership of wineries and vineyards committed to sustainability and is presented by the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance, California Association of Winegrape Growers, Wine Institute, Lodi Winegrape Commission, Napa Green, Napa Valley Vintners, Sonoma County Winegrowers and Vineyard Team.

Applications were judged by a panel of wine and sustainability experts including: Allison Jordan, Executive Director, California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance; Anna Brittain, Executive Director, Napa Green; Beth Vukmanic, Executive Director, Vineyard Team; Cyril Penn, Editor in Chief, Wine Business Monthly; Evan Goldstein, MS, President, Full Circle Wine Solutions and Master the World; Jennifer Richards, VP of Operations and Business Development; Sonoma County Winegrowers, Karen Block, PhD, Director of Industry Relations; UC Davis Viticulture and Enology, Natalie Wymer, VP of Communications and Member Relations; Wine Institute and Stephanie Bolton, PhD, Research and Education Director, Lodi Winegrape Commission.

Thank you to the Green Medal Award Sponsors

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