Oregon and sustainability go together like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. When tasting wine around the Willamette Valley, terms like Biodynamic, Salmon Safe, and Organic get mentioned frequently. What sets these terms apart? Read on for an overview of the four main certifications used in the Willamette Valley.
Certifying Body: Demeter®
Biodynamic® farming takes sustainability to a new level, while incorporating respect for the earth's energy and cycles. Biodynamic® farms have vibrant, biologically diverse soils.
Biodynamic® Momtazi Vineyard, located in the McMinnville AVA of the Willamette Valley
Certifying Body: Oregon Tilth, Quality Assurance International, United States Department of Agriculture
Organic farms are certified, unlike the generic term "sustainable," giving peace of mind to consumers concerned about the use of synthetic sprays and GMOs.
Certifying Body: International Organization for Biological Control (IOBC)
LIVE certification provides flexibility by not absolutely restricting synthetic inputs. Rather, LIVE monitors their use through detailed documentation, and then requires a reduction over time. LIVE also regulates farms beyond vine management by considering the health of the employees and community during the certification process.
Certifying Body: IOBC (LIVE), Oregon Tilth
This add-on certification focuses attention on farm water run-off to improve the health of streams, and consequently salmon.
Vineyards described as using "organic practices" or "biodynamic practices" are not certified. However, this shouldn't delegitimize the claim. Many small growers and producers cannot afford the certification process, including the staff time required to obtain certification.
Our micro-estate Ivy Slope Vineyard, farmed organically without certification