The Crush November 2023 - 3

In 2021, prompted by the escalating challenges of
fulfilling its Endangered Species Act (ESA) obligations
for pesticide decisions, EPA began developing a
comprehensive, long-term approach to meeting those
obligations. One of the proposed strategies focuses on
implementing early protections for endangered species
and habitats from the potential exposure of agricultural
Draft Herbicide Strategy
CAWG joined a host of agricultural organizations in
signing a letter prepared by the Minor Crop Farm
Alliance to address concerns with the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency's (EPA) Draft Herbicide Strategy
(Strategy). This Strategy is a component of the EPA's
broader initiative aimed at safeguarding endangered
species from the exposure of agricultural pesticide
use by focusing on developing and implementing
early protections for more than 900 listed species and
designated critical habitats.
The Strategy outlines potential mitigation measures
for conventional agricultural herbicides, aimed at
reducing pesticide transport via spray drift and runoff/
erosion. Part of the mitigation efforts proposed include
the requirement that growers gain " efficacy points "
by calculating mitigation measures in place for certain
conservation practices (no-till, vegetative filter strips,
contour terracing, etc.) in their operations. Each
herbicide product would have a specified efficacy point
threshold that a grower would need to meet or exceed
to be able to use that product.
In the letter submitted to the EPA, CAWG aided
in developing a scenario for winegrape growers in
California, taking into consideration current farming
practices and the feasibility of attaining enough efficacy
points to continue pesticide use.
There are currently four Pesticide Use Limitation Areas
(PULAs) outlined in the Strategy. In California, these
PULA's encompass most of the coastline and Central
Valley. Nationwide it is estimated that more than 60% of
grapes (wine and table) are located within a designated
Gregg Hibbits of Grapevine Capital Partners in San Luis
Obispo was elected as chairman of the board, succeeding
Tom Slater of Slater Farms, Inc., who served in the role
since 2021. The newly elected officer team includes Jeff
Bitter, a winegrape grower in Madera, and John Chandler
of Chandler Farms in Selma as vice-chairs; Duff Bevill
of Bevill Vineyard Management, LLC in Healdsburg as
secretary; and Jason Smith of Valley Farm Management in
Salinas as treasurer.
" Gregg's wealth of experience in the winegrape sector
is poised to be an invaluable asset as he guides the
association into its 50th year, " stated Natalie Collins,
President of CAWG. " With Gregg at the helm, CAWG
remains steadfast in its advocacy efforts, navigating the
intricate landscape of state and federal legislation and
regulations for the benefit of winegrape growers. "
CAWG is pleased to introduce six new directors, whose
term will commence on December 1. The new additions
include Karin Warnelius-Miller of Garden Creek Ranch
Vineyards Winery in Geyserville, George Donati of Pacific
Coast Farming in San Luis Obispo, Tom Merwin of Merwin
Vineyards in Clarksburg, Ben Kolber of KG Vineyard
Management in Lodi, Ryan Winters of Winters Farming,
Inc. in Manteca, and Eric Marthedal of Marthedal Farms in
CAWG growers and staff extend sincere gratitude to the
outgoing directors who have completed their dedicated
service on the board: Bill Berryhill of BB Vineyards in
Clements, Stephen Kautz of Ironstone Vineyards in
Murphys, Davindar Mahil of Creekside Farming Co. in
Madera, Tom Slater of Slater Farms, Inc. in Clarksburg,
Mike Testa of Coastal Vineyard Care Associates, and
Taylor Serres of Serres Ranch in Sonoma. | Page 3

The Crush November 2023

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Crush November 2023

The Crush November 2023 - 1
The Crush November 2023 - 2
The Crush November 2023 - 3
The Crush November 2023 - 4
The Crush November 2023 - 5
The Crush November 2023 - 6
The Crush November 2023 - 7
The Crush November 2023 - 8
The Crush November 2023 - 9
The Crush November 2023 - 10
The Crush November 2023 - 11
The Crush November 2023 - 12
The Crush November 2023 - 13
The Crush November 2023 - 14