#222 - December 14, 2012


VESTA – Online Classes Now Forming

Online classes are now forming and now is the time to join this one of a kind grape and wine education program. The Spring Schedule has been poster here: http://www.vesta-usa.org
Enrollment Deadlines
Spring General Education Courses – 12-7-12
Winter Viticulture and Enology Courses – 12-14-12
Spring Viticulture and Enology Courses – 1-18-13
Spring VIN 272 – 3-8-13
A tasting of a group of wines from the same vintage or representing the same style of wine (such as all Pinot noirs from different wineries in a region), as opposed to a vertical tasting which involves of the same wine through different vintages. In a horizontal tasting, keeping wine variety or type and wine region the same helps emphasize differences in winery styles.

 Iowa Wine Industry Loses a Real Professional – Steve Richardson

Steve Richardson lost his fight against cancer at 6:33 p.m. Wednesday December 11th, 2012. He was preceded in death by his wife Jane who had passed away earlier this year on June 29th.
I first met Steve back in 2004 when I ran into him at a few vineyard meetings held around the state. He was practicing law in Bloomfield, Iowa at the time and was also teaching some wine classes at Indian Hills Community College in Ottumwa, Iowa. Steve was a Certified Wine Educator through the Society of Wine Educators. A certification not many hold and not easy to get.
I remember when Steve notified me that he had become the vineyard manager for Tassel Ridge Winery at Leighton, Iowa in April of 2007. He was very excited to start his new career and it became a job he really enjoyed.
Steve was always willing to help out others in our industry when called upon. He was always smiling, very knowledgeable and easy to work with. Steve’s passionate support for our industry will surely be missed.
Memorials may be made to Hospice serving Wapello & Davis Counties, 927 E. Pennsylvania Ave., or Indian Hills Community College Foundation, 525 Grandview, Ottumwa, IA 52501. mlw
Steve Richardson
(Above) Steve Richardson, February of 2011. Courtesy of Tassel Ridge Winery

Organization Structure and Operation of the Illinois Wine Industry

Abstract: American Association of Wine Economists working paper #128
This study examines vertical coordination in an emerging Illinois wine industry. Results generally corroborate earlier findings that quality matters, as temporal issues related to grape perishability increase the probability written contracts are used to procure grapes and decrease reliance on informal agreements. Hold-up concerns related to sourcing adequate quality grapes and at risk investments winemaking equipment displace informal contracts with in-house production. Older wineries also rely more on their own vineyards, and larger ones require additional outside supplies. There is also some evidence that a few wineries outsource wine production activities to more experienced and larger wineries.
View the entire 23 page report here:
Northern Grapes News

Check out the latest edition of Northern Grapes News here:


1-(10-12), Great Plains Growers Conference and Trade Show

The Great Plains Growers Conference and Trade Show will be Jan. 10-12, 2013 at the Fulkerson Center on Missouri Western State University’s campus in St. Joseph, Mo. The event is a five-state collaborative effort of vegetable, cut flower and fruit grower associations and University Extension from Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and South Dakota.
More than 60 presentations covering organic and conventional crop production are planned for the second and third days of the conference, including opportunities to follow tracks on small fruit, tree fruit, cut flowers, beginner and advanced organic, marketing and beekeeping. Sessions on urban horticulture and community gardens have been added this year.
Registration for the Jan. 10 workshop is $55 per person, except for the Introduction to Vegetable Production (Spanish) track, which is $35 per person due to grant funding. Early bird registration for the Jan. 11 and Jan. 12 sessions is $45 per day; after Dec. 27, registration is $55 per day. Reduced registration for students is $25 per day. Registration includes meals and breaks. 4
The full program, registration information and updated details of the conference are available at: http://www.greatplainsgrowers.org . For more information about the program and a registration form, contact Mary Beth Alpers at alpersm@missouri.edu or phone 816-279-1691.

Check out TTB.gov’s new web pages here: http://www.ttb.gov/  

TTB.Gov web banner

3-(17-29) Washington State University – Italy Wine Tour

When: Sunday - Friday, March 17 to 29, 2013
Where: Piedmonte, Tuscany and Veneto regions of Italy.
Tour Includes:
12 nights in hotel (three stars) on B&B basis
9 lunches (beverages not included)
4 dinners (beverages not included)
All the transfer along the itinerary, in private luxury coach.
Guided tours in the cities of Novara, Siena, Florence, Verona (2 to 4 hrs. each, lead by an English speaking professional guide)
Winery visit: some wineries (but not the majority) apply a fee for the visit.This will be known only after finalizing the program.
Approximate cost per person (in U.S. Dollars) varies by number of participants: (prices will vary depending on Euro/U.S. Dollar Exchange rates at the time of payment.)
Number on tour 19-22 23-26 >26
Double/Twin Room $3,205 $2,884 $2,692
Single Room $3,653 $3,332 $3,141
The above prices do not include the flight to Milan, Italy and return flight from Verona, Italy.
(A search of several coach seat flights originating and ending out of Des Moines, Iowa on 11-21-12 indicated that the round trip cost would be approximately $2,000 per person.)
NEW! FREE Midwest Wide CLASSIFIEDS for vineyards and wineries at Midwest Wine Press here:

 Enter Now: WineMaker Magazine International Amateur Wine Competition

2013 WineMaker competition logoThe WineMaker International Amateur Wine Competition is the largest event of its kind in the world. Entries were received from all 50 American states, 8 Canadian provinces and 7 different countries for the 2012 competition resulting in a total of 4,318 wines entered.
Entry Deadline: March 15, 2013
Wines will be Judged: April 19-21, 2013
Entry Fee: $25 per bottle, one bottle per entry with a maximum of 15 entries per contestant.
Each contestant winemaker will get valuable feedback from experienced judges to see how their wines stack up against fellow winemakers. All entrants will receive judging notes back along with a list of the medal-winning wines.
Complete details and entry form here: http://www.winemakermag.com/competition

Notable Quotables

"The Money Myth. This one will never die, I know. But still, it's got to be said: There's very little correlation anymore between the cost of a wine and its intrinsic quality. And once beyond, oh, $30 a bottle, there's absolutely no correlation whatsoever."
From: Wine Myths That Need Shattering, 12-4-12 – Wine Spectator
"In 1994, the first year Wine Market Council conducted its consumer survey of U.S. adults, two-thirds of wine drinkers were marginal wine drinkers. Eighteen years later, over half of U.S. adult wine drinkers consume wine at core consumption levels."
From: Wine Market Council homepage: http://winemarketcouncil.com/
The straw-covered flask historically associated with Chianti.



Marketing Tidbits

1. 10 Quick Steps in Creating a Facebook Ad Campaign, 12-3-12 – Entrepreneur:
2. U.S. consumers are paying more attention to the price of wines, 12-3-12 – winesur:
Most Desirable Wine Purchase Factors2nd Tier Wine Purchase Factors
(Above) Highlights from Wine Market Council’s 2011 U.S. Wine Consumer Trends & Analysis report found here: http://winemarketcouncil.com/?page_id=35 
Estimated 2011 Table Wine Consumption
(Above) From: Where are America’s Leading Wine Markets, 12-13-12 – Enosbytes:

Neeto Keeno WWW Stuff

1. The Bubbly Professor: http://bubblyprofessor.com/
(Excellent study resources for anyone studying for the Certified Specialist of Wine exam.)
2. Wine Market Council’s new WWW site: http://winemarketcouncil.com/
3. Best Home Christmas Light Display (turn on your speakers) 1.35 min.:
4. America's Wine Trails, LLC announces a new FREE mobile app showcasing over 6,000 wineries and 270 wine trails in the United States. The app is available at the Apple and Android app stores.
5. (Below) The Different Types of Wine Infographic from Winefolly - $23.99 for hardcopy poster:
The Different Types of Wine poster

Videos of Interest

1. Neige Apple Ice Wine, Quebec Canada, 10-31-1, 6:44 min.:

Show n Tell

 Iowa wine strategic marketing meeting
(Right) Dave Roederer, Director of the Iowa Department of Management (standing) volunteered to facilitate the final of three Iowa Wine Strategic Marketing planning meetings held across the state. This final meeting was held at the Des Moines Area Community College campus in Ankeny, Iowa.
The Iowa Wine Growers Association and the Midwest Grape & Wine Industry Institute co-sponsored these three input meetings.

Articles of Interest

1. Study Contradicts Rachel Carson's Famous 'Silent Spring' Book, 12-6-12 – Western Farmer
2. SD: Backyard vintners do it for fun, profit, lifestyle, 12-7-12 Rapid City Journal:
3. NE: Central Nebraska winery rebuilding after fire, 12-10-12 – Kearney Hub:
4. NY: Viticulture 2013 Schedule Released, 12-5-12 – Wines & Vines:
5. IA: Farmland Value Reaches Historic $8,296 Statewide Average, 12-11-12 – ISU Extension:
6. Boxed Wine More Vulnerable Than Bottled Wine, UC Davis Researchers Find, 12-11-12 –
7. MO: Missouri Winery Seeks Label Art Annual - competition at Les Bourgeois puts art on the
8. NY: $1mm to study NY wines, 12-12-12 – Politics on the Hudson:
9. SD: South Dakota Winery Takes Flight, 12-13-12 – Keoland TV:
10. MO: Wine industry explodes in Missouri, 12-14-2 – Missourinet:

Calendar of Events

1-(10-12), Great Plains Growers Conference, Fulkerson Center, MO State Univ. St Joseph, MO: http://www.greatplainsgrowers.org/2013%20Web%20student%20registration%20form.pdf
1-(20-22)-13, Wisconsin Fresh Fruit & Vegetable Conference at The Wilderness Hotel & Conference Center in the Wisconsin Dells. http://www.waga.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=149&Itemid=78
1(24-25), Iowa Fruit & Vegetable Conf., Ankeny. When available info should be at: http://www.findafarmiowa.org/iowa-fruit-vegetable-growers-assoc-member-news.php
1-(29-31)-13, Unified Grape & Wine Consortium at the Sacramento Convention Center, Sacramento, CA http://www.unifiedsymposium.org/
1-31 to 2-2-13, Illinois Vintners & Grape Growers Assn. Conference & Winter Wine Festival – Crown Plaza Hotel, Springfield, IL. http://www.illinoiswine.com/conference.html
2-(5-8)-13, Washington Association of Wine Grape Growers Annual Meeting & Trade Show: Details here: http://www.wawgg.org/
2-(6-8)-13, Viticulture 2013 at the Rochester Riverside Convention Center in Rochester, NY: New York Wine & Grape Foundation: http://vit2013.com/Home_Page.php
2-(6-8)-13, Northern Grapes Symposium (in conjunction with Vit 2013), details later.
2-(7-9)-13, Midwest Grape & Wine Conference & Trade Show – St. Charles, MO Convention Center: Details: http://www.midwestgrapeandwineconference.com/
2-(13-15), Michigan Grape & Wine Conference, Kellogg Hotel & Conference Center – East Lansing, MI. Details: http://www.michiganwines.com/page.php?menu_id=77
2-(21-23)-13, Minnesota Grape Growers Association (MGGA) Cold Climate Conference – Crown Plaza, St. Paul. MN. Details: http://mngrapegrowers.com/conference
2-(21-23), MOSES Organic Farming Conference – La Crosse, WI: http://www.mosesorganic.org/
2-28 to 3-2 – 2013, 16th Nebraska Winery & Grape Growers Conference, Holiday Inn – Kearney, NE. Details later: http://agronomy.unl.edu/viticulture
3-(5-8)-13, Eastern Winery Exposition at Lancaster County Convention Center & Lancaster Marriott at Penn Square, PA: http://www.easternwineryexposition.com/conference/
3-(12-14)-13, Wineries Unlimited at Greater Richmond Convention Center, Richmond, VA: http://www.wineriesunlimited.com/
3-(14-16)-13, Iowa Wine Growers Assn. Annual Conference at the West Des Moines Mariott. Details later: http://www.iowawinegrowers.org
5-(16-18), Winemaker Magazine Conference - Monterey, CA. Full Details & Registration: http://www.winemakermag.com/conference
Past issues archived as html and/or pdf here: http://www.extension.iastate.edu/wine/news
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Michael L. White - CCA, CPAg, CSW
ISU Extension Viticulture Specialist
909 East 2nd Ave. Suite E, Indianola, IA 50125-2892
ph: 515-961-6237, fax: 6017, cell: 515-681-7286
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