April is California Wines: Down to Earth Month, a time when wineries across the state show off their earth-friendly wines made with sustainable winegrowing and winemaking practices.
California produces 90-percent of U.S. wine and attracts more than 20 million visitors to its vineyards each year. It is important to keep that going by growing “green.”
Some of the things California winemakers are doing to be more envionmentally-friendly include recycling and reusing materials and purchasing more water- and energy-efficient systems.
“Wine grape growers often will use animals in the vineyard to help them with the pest control and their weed control,” Wine Institute’s Director of Environmental Affairs Allison Jordan told California Life. “For example they’ll have sheep graze on weeds, they’ll use cover crops which helps prevent soil erosion and it also attracts beneficial insects,” Jordan said.
One of the best places to discover earth-friendly wine is the Santa Cruz Mountains Wine Region. Vintner Bill Cooper of Cooper Garrod Estate Vineyards told California Life there are a number of reasons for that.
“The fresh air, the land, the people. Everybody’s here to welcome you and make sure you have a good time in the Santa Cruz Mountains,” Cooper said.
To learn more about the Santa Cruz Mountains Wine Region and Down to Earth Month, be sure to check out our story below, airing statewide this week on California Life!