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

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

155
0
Advertisement

LangeTwins, Gloria Ferrer, Cooper-Garrod and Vino Farms, LLC Named 2024 Winners

March 26th – SACRAMENTO — Today, one week before California’s Down to Earth Month begins, four of the state’s premier wineries and vineyard companies were awarded California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Leadership Awards, joining 36 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. 

“As we celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the California Green Medal, this year’s winners provide four stellar examples of wineries and vineyards that are excelling in sustainability,” said Allison Jordan, California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance’s (CSWA) executive director. “Their stories demonstrate the holistic approach of sustainable winegrowing that conserves natural resources, protects the environment, enhances wine quality, enriches the lives of employees and communities while producing high-quality grapes and wine.”

Winners of the 2024 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.

LangeTwins Family Winery and Vineyards

LangeTwins Family Winery and Vineyards, located in Acampo, California, has embraced sustainability since the early 1970s, demonstrating its commitment through habitat restoration projects, the inclusion of energy efficient design and solar-power technology in its state-of-the-art winery, as well as the engagement of local youth in hands-on environmental stewardship education. The LangeTwins’ sustainable and regenerative farming principles and practices have increased the biodiversity in and around its vineyards, enriched the soil and improved the watershed. As these practices are more effective on a large neighborhood scale, LangeTwins has shared its knowledge with the greater community of winegrowers and the next generation of land stewards, evidenced most recently by its neighborhood collaboration to control the damaging vine mealybug through pheromone disruption, an environmentally safe control method. LangeTwins fosters close relationships with its team that allow time for conversations about sustainability through activities such as book clubs, both planned and impromptu lunches and attending sports games together. With the fifth generation now leading the way, the LangeTwins family truly embody their mission of “cultivating a lasting impact, together.” For its leadership and dedication to sustainability, we celebrate LangeTwins Family Winery and Vineyards as recipients of the 2024 California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Leader Award. 

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

Gloria Ferrer

Nestled in the scenic hills of the Sonoma region of Carneros, Gloria Ferrer stands as a model of sustainability, embodying a steadfast commitment to environmental stewardship and innovation. In 2021, Gloria Ferrer transitioned all 330 acres of its estate vineyards to regenerative organic farming practices. Employing cutting-edge technologies and AI, Gloria Ferrer identified specific areas within its vineyards that required additional attention, minimizing inputs while maximizing efficiency. From introducing biodiverse cover crops to implementing high-intensity sheep grazing and creating biochar, every aspect of its operations is geared towards building resilient soil health and minimizing environmental impact. Dedicated to preserving native habitats and fostering biodiversity, Gloria Ferrer has established habitat hedgerows, pollinator-friendly areas and nesting sites for various wildlife species on its ranches. And the company treats its people well, hiring full-time employees who receive livable wages, comprehensive benefits and ample paid time off. In the cellar, Gloria Ferrer continues its commitment to sustainability, investing in lightweighted sparkling bottles and closely monitoring water usage to minimize waste. Recognized for its exemplary efforts in environmental stewardship, Gloria Ferrer received the prestigious 2024 California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Environment Award.

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.

Cooper-Garrod Vineyards at Garrod Farms

Situated in the picturesque Santa Cruz Mountains, Cooper-Garrod Vineyards at Garrod Farms is a vineyard and winery where tradition, sustainability and community intertwine. Cooper-Garrod’s impact extends beyond the vineyards and into the community. From pioneering the Firewise Community initiative and actively participating in benefits for schools, mental health, Chambers of Commerce and history foundations, to inviting community members to use the farm’s hiking trails, Cooper-Garrod actively contributes to its neighbors’ well-being. The company’s “Stroll and Sip for Six” donations offer an immersive vineyard/winery sustainability experience, while its “Walk with the Winemaker” tours during Down to Earth Month in April showcase the company’s steadfast commitment to sustainability. Family and staff actively engage in public policy, environmental action and community organizations by serving on numerous boards and committees, further demonstrating the company’s commitment to broader sustainability efforts. For its ongoing dedication to leaving the Garrod Farms land and local community better than they found it for the last 131 years, Cooper-Garrod is the winner of the 2024 California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing 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.

Vino Farms, LLC

Vino Farms, a vineyard management company based in Lodi, not only exemplifies a strong commitment to environmental stewardship and responsible agriculture, but also demonstrates that sustainable practices can be synonymous with good business practices. Employing advanced monitoring technology for water efficiency, Vino Farms utilizes Tule towers, soil moisture probes and Ceres Imagery to prevent overwatering in vineyards, fostering uniform water distribution and substantial cost savings. To maintain soil health, it uses cover crops, practicse minimum tillage and uses compost-based fertilizer, contributing to increased organic matter and carbon sequestration. Vino Farms also creates natural habitat such as native hedgerows and vegetation surrounding reservoirs to attract beneficial insects — and releases additional beneficial insects via drones to reduce the need for pesticide applications and associated costs. Vino Farms embraces renewable energy, transitioning all trucks and tractors to biofuel since 2010. Solar panels power ranch shops and water pumps, reducing reliance on fossil fuels, mitigating greenhouse gas emissions and reducing costs. Prioritizing the health and safety of its employees, Vino Farms regularly organizes training sessions and meetings designed to enhance safety protocols. For its commitment to sustainable agriculture, innovative use of technology and active engagement with the community to ensure a thriving generational family business, Vino Farms is the winner of the 2024 California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Business Award. 

VISIT GREENMEDAL.ORG FOR MORE INFORMATION

About the California Green Medal Sustainable Winegrowing Leadership Awards

The California Green Medal is presented by the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance, California Association of Winegrape Growers, Wine Institute, Lodi Winegrape Commission, Napa Valley Vintners, Napa Green, Sonoma County Winegrowers and Vineyard Team. California vineyards and wineries that participate in a sustainability program in California are eligible to apply in four award categories (Leader, Environment, Community and Business) that recognize outstanding achievement in sustainability. A judging panel of wine and sustainability experts make the final selections and each recipient receives an engraved Green Medal; 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.

Applications were judged by a panel of wine and sustainability experts including:

Amy Azzolina, social media and communications manager; Wine Institute, Stephanie Bolton, research and education director, Lodi Winegrape Commission; Anna Brittain, executive director, Napa Green; Natalie Collins, president, California Association of Winegrape Growers; Lisa Francioni, deputy director, California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance; Evan Goldstein, MS, president, Full Circle Wine Solutions and Master the World; InHaeng Jung, professor, Sonoma State University Wine Business Institute; Cyril Penn, editor-in-chief, Wine Business Monthly; Tonya Pitts, wine director, One Market Restaurant; Jennifer Richards, vp of operations and business development, Sonoma County Winegrowers and Beth Vukmanic, executive director, Vineyard Team.

Advertisement