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Villa San-Juliette certified in sustainable practices 

Matt Ortman

Winemaker Matt Ortman

Villa San-Juliette Vineyard & Winery recently completed Sustainability In Practice (SIP) certification with the Vineyard Team, a network of farmers that strives to promote sustainable vineyard practices and protect resources valuable to the land and the community.

Launched by Nigel Lythgoe and Ken Warwick in 2006, Villa San-Juliette has made sustainability a focus since its inception, said Winemaker, Matt Ortman.

“VSJ is a long-time member of the Vineyard Team,” Ortman recalled, “so we were already following many best practices before pursuing SIP certification.”

When Ortman joined the VSJ team in January, 2013, gaining SIP certification became a priority. “We completed the Vineyard Team’s audit of our growing practices and winery operations, including testing our well pump for efficiency. We made some important changes in erosion control and integrated pest management – specifically, installing more owl boxes – and were SIP certified within a year of my hire date.”

Asked what inspires VSJ’s interest in adopting sustainable practices, Ortman cites Lythgoe and Warwick’s foresight. “Ken and Nigel came into this business committed to being good stewards of the land, which is part of what attracted me to the job in the first place. As a second-generation winemaker, I like working to ensure that a third generation could make wine here, too.”


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About the author: Publisher Scott Brennan

Scott Brennan is the publisher of this newspaper and founder of Access Publishing. Follow him on Twitter, LinkedIn, or follow his blog.