What is in this article?:
- Juice grape growers get sustainability report card
- Juice-grape specific
- Retailers such as Walmart are putting increasing pressure on juice and food processors to document the sustainability of their production practices.
- Washington State University is developing an assessment to help juice grape growers determine the sustainability of their operations.
WSU scientists and extension personnel created a draft of the Sustainability Report Card this year and sought feedback from Washington producers of juice grapes for National Grape, the grower cooperative for Welch’s. So far, 193 growers have completed the draft assessment, which represents more than 90 percent of the cooperative’s state members, said NGC’s Craig Bardwell. The goal is to receive assessments from all Washington members before harvest. Revisions will be made to the Sustainability Report Card this fall based on comments received from the growers.
Michigan and New York have vineyard sustainability programs in place, but they are not juice-grape specific like the one being developed in Washington, Moyer said. In addition, Washington juice grape growers have many sustainable production practices already in place, as an inherent feature of producing juice grapes in Washington’s geography and climate.
"Washington juice grape production is, for the most part, one of the more sustainable production systems in the country,” she added. "Concord production is very low input. Now we’re putting a number to it.”
For more information about the Sustainability Report Card, visit the WSU Viticulture and Enology website.