text: Great Wine

New York Sustainable Winegrowing

New York Sustainable Winegrowing is a comprehensive program that includes educational events and resources as well as an official certification process for vineyards who are seeking to advance their environmental, social, and economic sustainability. Certification is based on science backed regionally defined standards and independent third-party audits so you can feel confident in the wine you are drinking.

Look for our Trustmark at vineyards and wineries and on bottles in 2024 to ensure that the wine you are enjoying is environmentally sound, socially equitable, and financially sustainable. 

text: Doing Good.

Certification Standards

Certification is based on maintaining a minimum score in the VineBalance workbook. This workbook is designed to provide grape growers in New York and other regions of the Northeast with guidance in evaluating and adopting best management practices that minimize environmental impacts, reduce economic risks, and protect worker health and safety. Standards in the workbook are set by a panel of experts including academics, industry members, and extension specialists focusing on practices relevant to New York grape production. Annually, these standards undergo review and revision to ensure they are up to date with science based best practices and economic feasibility. Currently the workbook features nine objectives.  

  1. To promote the use of practices that reduce reliance on off-farm inputs. 
  2. To build, regenerate, and conserve healthy soils for future generations. 
  3. To protect surrounding reservoirs and waterways from pollution. 
  4. To improve energy efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. 
  5. To conserve natural resources, reduce waste streams, and recycle. 
  6. To encourage healthy ecosystems, biodiversity, and wildlife habitat. 
  7. To increase climate resiliency and promote climate-smart farming. 
  8. To provide education and pathways for continuous improvement. 
  9. To foster a socially equitable and economically viable industry. 

Are You a Grape Grower Wanting to Join Our Sustainable Winegrowing Program?

Certified Vineyards

The current list of vineyards achieving certification are as follows:

Finger Lakes

  • Airy Acres Vineyard*
  • Anthony Road Wine Company/Martini Vineyards*
  • Atwater Vineyards*
  • Boundary Breaks*
  • Buttonwood Grove Winery*
  • Buzzard Crest Vineyards/Barrington Cellars*
  • Chateau Frank*
  • Doyle Vineyard Management (Caywood)*
  • Doyle Vineyard Management (Dresden)*
  • Doyle Vineyard Management (Pulleney)*
  • Dr. Konstantin Frank Eric Volz Vineyard*
  • Dr. Konstantin Frank Winery*
  • Forge Cellars*
  • Fox Run Vineyards*
  • Heart & Hands Wine Company*
  • Hermann J. Wiemer*
  • Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyard*
  • Heron Hill Winery*
  • Hillick and Hobbs*
  • Hosmer Winery/Patricia Verona*
  • Hunt Country Vineyards*
  • Ingle Vineyard
  • Kashong Glen Vineyards*
  • Keuka Lake Vineyards West*
  • Keuka Lake Vineyards East*
  • Lake Road Vineyards*
  • Lamoreaux Landing Wine Cellars*
  • New Vines Winery*
  • Ravines Wines Cellars Geneva*
  • Ravines Wines Cellars Hammondsport*
  • Ravines Wines Cellars Ovid*

Finger Lakes (con’t)

  • Rock House Vineyards*
  • Sawmill Creek Vineyards*
  • Silver Thread Vineyard*
  • Standing Stone Vineyards*
  • Thirsty Owl Wine Company*
  • Three Brothers Wineries*
  • Treleaven Wines/King Ferry Vineyards*
  • Vineyard View Winery/Crooked Vines*
  • Wagner Vineyards*

Hudson Valley

  • Benmarl Winery*
  • Clover Pond Vineyard*
  • Fjord Vineyard*
  • South Dominion Vineyard
  • Whitecliff Vineyard*

Long Island

  • Ev&Em Vineyards

Champlain Valley

  • Four Maples Vineyard & Winery*

Niagara

  • Arrowhead Springs Vineyards
  • Chateau Niagara Winery*

*Vineyards marked with an asterisk are also members of the New York Wine & Grape Foundation.

Related News

Understanding New York Wines’ Sustainability Program with Justin Jackson

This week our very own Justin Jackson, NYWGF Sustainability Program Manager, sat down for an interview with the Editor of Canada’s Good Food Revolution, Jamie Drummond. In Part One of this series, Justin shared insights into our New York Sustainable Winegrowing Program and its comprehensive scope. Click the link below to learn more about how sustainability practices are shaping the future of winemaking in New York. Stay tuned for Part Two next week, where Justin

The Sun That Nurtures New York’s Grapes Now Powers Many New York Wineries

The ritual of popping a cork on a bottle of wine after a long day at work or before a weekend meal comes with many things. Your favorite corkscrew. Your favorite glassware. The feeling of stress leaving your body when you hear the cork pop, you pour the wine, and then inhale the captivating aromas. The indescribable satisfaction of the first sip. What that ritual probably doesn’t come with is the question in your mind:

The Continuing Work of Reducing the Need for Chemicals in New York’s Vineyards

Vineyards today are a far cry from their manicured, perfectly-trimmed-and-green predecessors of yore. In the 1960s, you were likely to glimpse neat rows of vines with pristine rows of soil between them—not a weed or cover crop to be seen. Chemicals seemed to be the answer to better wine growing. Herbicides destroyed the weeds that competed with the vines for water. Insecticides got rid of critters that wanted to use the vines and the grapes

Paul and Shannon Brock standing with lake in the background, both people are holding a glass of white wine.

2023 Unity Awards: Sustainability Recipient - Silver Thread Vineyards

Silver Thread Vineyard is a boutique estate winery located on the east side of Seneca Lake in the Finger Lakes region. Sustainability is important to us, and we grow our grapes using regenerative and biological practices for exceptional purity and expression. Co-owner/winemakers Paul and Shannon Brock have owned the business for 12 years.

“We have always valued the collaborative approach of Finger Lakes wineries and have tried to give back at least as much as we receive from this terrific industry. It's humbling and exciting to be recognized by our peers for our sustainability efforts.” says, Paul Brock, Co-owner and Estate Manager.

NYWGF is a Founding Member of the Sustainable Wine Roundtable

The Sustainable Wine Roundtable (SWR) is an independent, nonprofit, multi-stakeholder initiative to unite the international wine community around a consensus definition of sustainable wine. The mission of the SWR is to develop guidelines and best practices to advance sustainability in all aspects of wine production and trade. As a Founding Member, the Foundation will join with sister programs to share expertise and develop a global sustainability standard for wine. For more information, visit this link.

porto protocol logo

NYWGF Joins Porto Protocol

We are thrilled to announce that the New York Wine & Grape Foundation has joined the Porto Protocol. The Porto Protocol Foundation is an open and dynamic platform of ideas and workable solutions to combat climate change. The mission of the Porto Protocol Foundation is to drive collaborative action by bringing together a network of change makers and workable climate solutions for and within the wine world. For more information, visit this link.

The NYWGF Sustainability Program would not be possible without support from the USDA Natural Resource Conservation Service, USDA Rural Development, New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, Genesee Valley Regional Market Authority, Yates County, New York State Wine Grape Growers, and John Ingle of Ingle Vineyard and Heron Hill Winery.