New Possibilities for Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

New Possibilities for Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association

Organization is Awarded Two Major Grants Within 90 Days

March 5, 2010 (Monterey, CA) – The Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association was recently announced as the recipient of not one but two major government grants awarded to increase consumers’ market awareness of Monterey as a wine country destination and an industry heavyweight.

Awarded to the Association within just 90 days of one another, both competitive grants are designed to allocate “business incentive” funds to organizations which are, in turn, required to raise matching funds to qualify.  “The fact that our very own members invested in these initiatives is a true indication of how critical they will be to our region’s future,” explains MCVGA Executive Director, Rhonda Motil.

Dove-tailing with the MCVGA’s strategic marketing plan for 2010, the Rural Business Enterprise Grant is awarded by the Rural Business Cooperative Service, an agency within the USDA Rural Development under the provisions of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.  Granted to just 44 recipients across the United States, the program’s primary purpose is to improve the economic conditions of rural areas.  Awarded $98,500 in concert with $99,718 in matching funds, the Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association will use the grant to increase awareness of Monterey as a wine country destination by: installing eight viticulture murals along Highway 101 highlighting the region’s wine culture and directing guests to the tasting rooms; producing a new winery tasting room map for the developing River Road Wine Trail; launching a new mobile application to guide travelers within Monterey Wine Country; designing wine trail signs along the River Road wine trail, and; conducting a media tour of the region for 10 journalists.  Projects funded by this grant will be completed by March 2011.

Supporting another integral goal within the Monterey County Vintners and Growers Association’s strategic marketing plan, the California Specialty Crop Grant is a USDA block grant which will fund projects that improve the long-term sales and competiveness of Monterey area winegrape-growers by developing market awareness for Monterey County’s nine distinct American Viticulture Areas (AVA).  Specifically, the Association will conduct research into the unique characteristics of each AVA, identifying points of differentiation for inclusion in marketing materials such as a printed vineyard map and a video for the MCVGA website, media, trade and consumers.  Moreover, the awarded funds will support the production of four wines that typify their specific AVA, each collaboratively blended by three talented Monterey growers and winemakers from each of the featured AVAs.  Using fruit from the 2010 vintage and released in 2012, these wines will be packaged with unique branding and launched to the media during a major regional event in Monterey Wine Country in 2012, as well as in select cities across the US.  The total budget for this ambitious initiative is $487,044, comprised of USDA funding at $199,485 and a matching investment from members and partners of the MCVGA at $180,521.  The State of California selected 55 organizations to receive grant funds, total funding for which amounts to over $16 million.

Bringing together the talents and resources of its members, partners and the community, the MCVGA promotes and supports their leadership in the art, science and business of wine.  Founded in 1974, the Association is a non-profit organization representing over 75 vintners and growers in Monterey, California.  Additional details are available by visiting www.montereywines.org or by calling (831) 375-9400.

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FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CALL, PARKER SANPEI & ASSOCIATES 805.543.2288

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