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Pesticide News Story: PESP Partner, the Lodi-Woodbridge Winegrape Commission, Wins 2006 Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award; and Commission Member Wins Conservation Award

For Release: January 5, 2007

Our Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program partner, Lodi-Woodbridge Winegrape Commission, has won the State of California’s highest and most prestigious environmental honor. The award recognizes years of hard work by all Lodi winegrowers to become the leaders in sustainable winegrowing. The Lodi-Woodbridge Winegrape Commission represents almost 800 winegrowers farming more than 90,000 acres that produce 20 percent of California’s wine grapes. The Commission was one of only three organizations honored for their work in the field of sustainable practices or facilities. Their program includes grower education and outreach, field implementation with one-on-one assistance, and the Lodi Winegrower’s Workbook self-assessment. In 2005, a third-party, sustainable winegrowing certification program, “The Lodi Rules for Sustainable Winegrowing,” was also implemented and includes California’s first sustainable winegrowing standards that have been peer reviewed by scientists, the academic community, and environmental community. The program is being implemented on a region-wide basis. Fifteen hundred vineyard acres were certified in 2005, and 6,000 acres are enrolled for 2006.

In addition, one of the Commission members, Lange Twins Wine Estate, received a prestigious award. Randy and Brad Lange, winegrowers and active members of the Commission, won the first Leopold Conservation Award ever awarded in California. This award is presented to a private landowner who exemplifies the spirit of Aldo Leopold’s land ethic, which translates a deep abiding love of the land into responsible stewardship and management. Randy and Brad are third-generation wine grape growers on their 6,500 acre vineyard near Lodi. They were selected based on their commitment to sustainable land management, the overall health of their land, implementation of innovative practices, and dedication to community outreach and leadership.

For more information visit the Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program Web site.

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