We are excited to announce that we have been officially certified organic by California Certified Organic Farmers. CCOF is a United States Department of Agriculture (USDA)-accredited organic certifying agency and trade association, located in Santa Cruz, California. Formed in 1973, CCOF was the first organic certification entity in the United States.
We went through a rigorous application process to acquire this certification, including listing all of the materials and processes involved in farming our grapes, and undergoing an interview and inspection by a CCOF representative. We’re proud to say we were approved on first review, effective November 2019.
Certifications are renewed annually, and we will need to continue to file our materials and procedures with CCOF in order to maintain our certification.
All soil supplements, fertilizers, and fungicide sprays must be CCOF certified before we can apply them, and any equipment used must be dedicated to organic use or thoroughly washed before it comes onto our property.
Our next goal is to farm the vineyard with biodynamic principles. We began by working with renowned enologist Pierre Millemann from Burgundy to help us in this venture. He is an expert in biodynamic farming and winemaking, and he has an impressive client list in Europe as well as a few notable vineyards and wineries in Oregon and Sonoma County.
Pierre helped to advise us on cover crops to discourage invasive weeds, encourage beneficial insects, and to help bring the soil alive and for the vines to thrive.
The practice of biodynamic agriculture was developed by Rudlof Stiener (founder of the Waldorf Schools) and is promoted internationally by the Demeter Association, which handles certification for these techniques.
Through holistic practices, biodynamic farming treats the vineyard like a living organism, not just plants rooted in the dirt. By working with the soil to bring out its natural terroir, the wine produced from the vineyard will have more character and nuance.
We are now working with Phlippe Coderey and Natalie Winkler to fine tune the biodynamic approach and better understand the needs of the vineyard. With their guidance, we look forward to bring vitality to the vines and ensure their longevity.
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