2nd Annual Sustainable Viticulture Conference

The Sustainable Appalachian Viticulture Institute & Jewel of the Blue Ridge Vineyard, in conjunction with Warren Wilson College in Asheville NC, will host the 2nd Annual North Carolina Conference on Sustainable Viticulture Wednesday, February 22, 2012.  Come learn how to participate in the fastest growing industry in North Carolina that provided an economic impact of more than $1 billion in NC last year. The all-day conference will feature speakers from around the USA who will share information on how to grow grapes organically/biodynamically, which grapes are best for our steep mountain slopes and climate conditions, how to market your vineyard and winery, practical aspects of using various cover crops between rows of grapes, some of the many ways to generate value-added products from grapes including neutraceuticals, and how to make wines from organically/biodynamically grown grapes.

We have a lineup of interesting speakers with useful information to help you grow grapes sustainably. Our featured speaker will be Phillip Hart, owner/winemaker of AmByth Estates in the mountains of Templeton, California. He will be presenting sessions on growing grapes bio-dynamically and making wines from his bio-dynamically grown grapes.

The conference will begin at 8:30 AM and run until 4:30 PM. Other presenters and topics include:

Alan Staton (Zirconia NC) & John Kinnaird (Mars Hill NC) representing the French Broad Vignerons will present “Preliminary Results for Several Cold-hardy Grape Varieties in the Mountains.”

Chuck Blethen, owner of the Jewel of the Blue Ridge Vineyard (Marshall NC) will discuss “The Katuah Muscadine – the Perfect Grape for the Mountains.”

Gill Giese, Surry Community College (Dobson NC) will discuss “Under Trellis Cover Crops to Optimize Vine Growth and Grape Composition.

Rudy Mullis, Hinnant Family Vineyards (Pine Level NC) will share his experience of “Making Neutraceuticals from Grape Pommace.”

Chris Reedy, Blue Ridge Food Ventures (Candler NC) will inform us about “Blue Ridge Food Ventures Value-added Product Capabilities for Grapes.”

Justin Furr, NC Wine & Grape Council (Raleigh NC) will talk about “Marketing Your Vineyard/Winery.”

Carl Cantaluppi, NCSU Cooperative Extension Service (Granville and Person Counties NC) will present “Seedless Table Grape Variety Trials.”

The conference registration fee is $40 paid in advance or $50 walk-in registration. Registration fee includes lunch, coffee break refreshments, handouts, and free parking. Online payment of registration is now available at www.JeweloftheBlueRidge.com – click on the link near the Warren Wilson College logo.

Jewel of the Blue Ridge Vineyard has been instrumental in organizing and conducting educational sessions for grape growers around the region. Sustainable viticulture is a new practice in the mountains of WNC. Jewel of the Blue Ridge Vineyard is a founding member of The Sustainable Appalachian Viticulture Institute (SAVI.) For more information about Jewel of the Blue Ridge Vineyard see www.JeweloftheBlueRidge.com or www.GrapeSAVI.org to learn more about the Sustainable Appalachian Viticulture Institute.

Warren Wilson College provides a distinctive undergraduate and graduate liberal arts education combining academics, work, and service in a learning community committed to environmental responsibility, cross-cultural understanding, and the common good. Warren Wilson College’s vision is to lead the nation toward a new model for liberal arts education through the innovation of its Triad educational program (academics, work, and service), the quality of its academic engagement, the fulfillment of its sustainability principles, the depth of its commitment to diversity, the vitality of its community, and its nurturing of individual well-being. For more information about Warren Wilson College see www.warren-wilson.edu

French Broad Vignerons is a grape growing and winemaking association that meets monthly and provides education and training for people interested in starting vineyards and winemaking basics. More information is available at www.FrenchBroadVignerons.Blogspot.com

For additional information about the upcoming conference please contact Chuck Blethen, Jewel of the Blue Ridge Vineyard, 828-606-3130, Chuck@JeweloftheBlueRidge.com

SFNToday.com is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. SFNToday.com presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.