Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 1 - 76

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PRODUCERS

Shannon Ridge Vineyards and Winery

Leading the Flock
Shannon Ridge Vineyards takes a unique approach to sustainability.
By Jim Harris

>> Shannon Ridge Vineyards and Winery's patented Ovis Cycle system uses sheep to eat grass, weeds and low leaves from vines, reducing its need for manual labor.

M

ost vineyard and farming operations employ some sort of sustain-

ability practice within their operations, whether it be rotating
crops or reducing water use. Shannon Ridge Vineyards and Winery takes its commitment to the environment far beyond industry
standards while also creating a new business opportunity for itself.
The company's patented Ovis Cycle system, named
company profile
for the Latin word for sheep, involves ranching 300 head
Shannon Ridge Vineyards
of the titular animals on the 1,200 acres of farmland on
and Winery
its home property in Clearlake Oaks, Calif. The sheep
www.shannonridge.com
Headquarters: Clearlake Oaks, Calif.
eat grass, weeds and low leaves from vines, greatly
Employees: 300
Specialty: Wine and grapes
reducing the vineyard's need to mow grass and almost
Clay Shannon, president and CEO:
entirely eliminating the use of gas-powered weed eat"We want to be the go-to sustainable wine company with a product
ers in its operation. "We have the ultimate sustainable
that is fairly priced in the market."
system," President and CEO Clay Shannon says.

76

food & drink international * winter 2016 volume 1 * www.fooddrink-magazine.com

Other benefits of the Ovis Cycle
include reducing the company's use
of herbicides and manual labor, as
the sheep eat weeds and vines that
would otherwise be removed manually. Sheep also eat cover crops, dry
grasses and other leaf material that
can fuel wildfires, making the property more fire-resistant. The sheep also
provide natural fertilization to the
property, which has helped grass to
grow on hilltops that have been eroded over time.
In addition to providing natural


http://www.fooddrink-magazine.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 1

Contents
Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 1 - Cover1
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Food and Drink International - Winter 2016 Volume 1 - 1
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