CA Wildfire Resources   

California has become all too familiar with wildfires and the immediate and lasting impacts they have on vineyards, winery operations, and communities around the state. CAWG has compiled a list of resources detailing safety and training measures, risks to winegrapes, and assistance options.


RESOURCES                                                                           
CAWG Wildfire and Smoke Exposure Events Webinar
In a growing season defined by unprecedented challenges and unpredictability, 2020 has thrown California grape growers yet another curveball. A surprise late-summer storm system spawned a series of wildfires in many areas of the state that present a new set of risks and challenges.

On Wednesday, August 26th, CAWG hosted a webinar to take an in-depth look at what smoke exposure may mean for the winegrape crop and how to best manage risks that growers may encounter.

Topics and presenters included:
Smoke Exposure and Risks to Grape Quality
Alisa Jacobson, Joel Gott Wines and Anita Oberholster, Ph.D., UC Davis

 Winegrape Contracts – Smoke Exposure Language
Dale Stern of Downey Brand, LLP

Crop Insurance Claims

Greg Merrill and Kristine Fox of Pan American Insurance Services

Update:

In the crop insurance session, it was discussed that samples are required to be sent to a third-party lab and will need to show elevated levels of guaiacol and 4-methylguaiacol for the claim.  The required testing method mentioned was from a fresh berry test and Pan American advised that growers discuss with their adjusters any additional testing to supplement the berry test. Due to the information provided by Dr. Oberholster regarding the bound chemicals being revealed in the fermentation process, Pan American is happy to share that carriers may now potentially accept the mini-ferment test results from a third-party lab to supplement, or in place of the berry testing. Again, you must talk with your insurance carrier to determine their preferred method.  Crop insurance carriers will do everything they can to work with growers through their claim and provide the proper guidance to assure no steps are missed.

Clarification:

You do not need your test results back prior to starting your harvest, the samples just need to be sent in to a third-party lab prior to harvest.

Worker Safety and Air Quality
Michael Miiller, CAWG’s Director of Government Relations and Marco Figueroa, Pan American Insurance Services


PDF of Presentations - Supporting Documents
*This webinar recording is intended for CAWG members, you will need your user credentials to access this information. If you need your credentials, please email natalie@cawg.org


Additional Documents Created by the West Coast Smoke Exposure Task Force:
· Grape Sampling Protocol for Growers  
· Micro-Fermentation Protocol   

The West Coast Smoke Exposure Task Force is also working on
preparing a paper, which will be widely distributed, to assist growers’ understanding of how to use crop insurance to protect against smoke exposure risks and successfully navigate the claims process. Every year growers face a critically important decision about whether to purchase crop insurance and how much coverage to obtain. We believe this document will prove useful to growers in California, Oregon and Washington. We anticipate that document will be available by mid-September.


The task force will also soon release a ‘road map’ that will serve as a guide to encourage timely and effective communication between growers and wineries to address shared concerns related to smoke exposure. We are working on that document and it should be released soon.



Winegrape Contracts
Oct 9. Webinar - Smoke Exposure & Winegrape Contracts
Contracts and Enforcement Webinar   - Force Majeure Language
*More information to come!

Additional Resources: