Carroll County Winegrape Industry Gets a Kick Start

Michael L. White, Extension Viticulture Specialist, Central Area

Problem Statement:

John and Rose Guinan of Omaha, Nebraska looked around Iowa for almost 2 years for that special location to establish a winery and vineyard. They ended up selecting Carroll County as the site for their Villa Santa Maria Winery and vineyard. Most Iowa wineries need local winegrape vineyards to help supply their needs. Unfortunately, there were no winegrape vineyards in Carroll County to draw upon.   A local winegrape industry needed to be started in the area. 

Programmatic Response:

Carroll County Extension sponsored a series of four Winegrape 101 evening classes in March of 2006 as an opportunity for potential growers to learn about the winegrape industry.  This Winegrape 101 series ended up being well received with an average of 18 people attending each session.  Mike White, ISU Extension Viticulture Specialist presented at each of these classes and offered technical assistance through follow-up contacts. Dennis Molitor, the Carroll County Extension Director promoted and hosted this series in the county Extension office.  John and Rose Guinan attended these meetings to show support and help answer questions.

Impact/Outcome: 

The Winegrape 101 series kick started a small but growing winegrape industry in Carroll County, large enough to enable the Carroll County ISU Extension office to sponsor a tour of two wineries and two vineyards on the evening of August 16th, 2007. Carroll County now boasts two wineries: Villa Santa Maria Winery located at Willey and Spotted Horse Winery at Arcadia. Both opened for business in 2007.  There are now 6 commercial winegrape vineyards in Carroll county encompassing 18+ acres.

2007
131 Commercial Horticulture Production Methods & Systems

Page last updated: January 10, 2008
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