Home Industry News Releases O’Neill Vintners & Distillers’ Caine Thompson Joins Regenerative Viticulture Foundation Board of...

O’Neill Vintners & Distillers’ Caine Thompson Joins Regenerative Viticulture Foundation Board of Trustees

162
0
Advertisement

The Certified B Corporation continues its sustainability leadership in the wine industry with this global appointment

LARKSPUR, Calif., May 15, 2024 — Caine Thompson, Head of Sustainability at O’Neill Vintners & Distillers (O’Neill), a Certified B Corporation, joined the Regenerative Viticulture Foundation’s (RVF) Board of Trustees this month. Thompson’s appointment further cements O’Neill’s leadership in sustainability and regenerative viticulture and its focus on efforts to mitigate the impacts of climate change.

The RVF was created in 2021 as a non-profit organization by Maison Mirabeau founder Stephen Cronk, Oregon-based regenerative winemaker Mimi Casteel and Danish permaculture expert Jesper Saxgren. The organization was formed to inspire the transition towards regenerative viticulture by creating an international resource hub with an emphasis on science, communication and support for growers worldwide. It has grown to foster an international community with a governing board of eight trustees from across the globe.

“I am honored to join the international Regenerative Viticulture Foundation Board of Trustees,” said Thompson. “O’Neill’s goal has always been to learn from our regenerative vineyard living case study, share our learnings with the wine community, and scale it up to show the viability and impact on the larger wine industry. This board position broadens our reach to support regenerative farming globally and partner with others, getting us one step closer to achieving that goal.”

O’Neill launched a regenerative farming case study in 2020 to examine the effectiveness of carbon sequestration, water use and vine health while measuring cost and quality of fruit against conventional sustainable farming. It started with 40 estate acres in Paso Robles, converting an additional 90 acres a year later. Today, over 130 acres are farmed regeneratively (and certified organic) in Paso Robles, and O’Neill is seeking the Regenerative Organic Certification (ROC), which it aims to attain before the 2024 harvest. 

“We believe that regenerative farming has the potential to change the world, but it needs to be able to scale up. I firmly believe that organic and regenerative vineyards should produce wines at accessible price points for every consumer to drink sustainably and benefit our planet,” commented Jeff O’Neill, Founder and CEO of O’Neill Vintners & Distillers. “With Caine’s leadership, O’Neill is B Corp Certified and continues to strengthen our regenerative farming footprint. We are proud to be a part of the Regenerative Viticulture Foundation, helping to move regenerative adoption forward in the wine industry.”

Thompson has worked as Head of Sustainability for O’Neill Vintners & Distillers since 2020. His industry leadership in sustainable winegrowing and operations began in his native New Zealand where he was named New Zealand’s Young Viticulturist of The Year in 2009. Since joining O’Neill, Thompson supported the Regenerative Viticulture Case Study beginning in 2020, achieved a win for the Wine Institute’s Green Medal Leader Award in 2021 and spearheaded efforts for O’Neill to become a Certified B Corporation in 2022, in addition to TRUE Zero Waste certified. Thompson was recognized as one of Wine Enthusiast’s Future 40 in 2023 for his leadership in regenerative farming efforts. He continues to support the wine community through board committee service with Sustainable Wine Roundtable, The Organic Trade Association (Vice Chairman), Wine Institute, California Polytechnic State University – San Luis Obispo (Viticulture & Wine School), the CAB Collective (Chair of Viticulture & Wine Research), and now, the Regenerative Viticulture Foundation (Trustee).

“Adding Caine and a company with great reach in the US market like O’Neill, who is also dedicated to sustainability and regenerative viticulture, is truly our pleasure,” concluded Cronk. “We are looking forward to making some positive change in the wine world as we accelerate the adoption of regenerative viticulture across the globe.”

About O’Neill Vintners & Distillers

O’Neill Vintners & Distillers, a Certified B Corporation, was founded in 2004 by industry leader and entrepreneur Jeff O’Neill. For over 20 years, the vertically integrated winery has produced premium wine and spirits throughout California and has a reputation for producing consumer-focused brands while being a leader in sustainable operations. O’Neill received the Green Medal Leader Award in 2021 by the Wine Institute and achieved B Corp Certification in 2022. The company currently operates in Larkspur, Parlier, and Paso Robles, CA, and has grown a national brands portfolio to include Line 39, Harken Chardonnay, Rabble Wines, Charles Woodson’s Intercept, FitVine Wine, Robert Hall Winery, Allegro Cellars, BrandyLab, and Javelin Vodka. For more information, please visit www.ONeillWine.com

About Regenerative Viticulture Foundation

The Regenerative Viticulture Foundation (RVF) is a registered charity dedicated to creating a sustainable future for vineyards, growers and the planet. It inspires the transition towards regenerative viticulture through science, communication and support for growers. It has board representation from the UK, Denmark, France and the USA, is aligned with non-profits the Porto Protocol, International Wineries for Climate Action, the Sustainable Wine Roundtable and the Associación Viticultura Regenerativa. For further information, please visit: The Regenerative Viticulture Foundation

Advertisement