COMMENTARY

Red, White and Green

By Hilary Berg, OWP Editor

August is OWP’s annual “green” issue, and when it comes to sustainability and Oregon wine’s part in it, there is a lot to write about.

Possible topics to cover include some of the obvious ones, such as compost, solar panels, wind power, bio-diesel and more. I must admit, when I think “green,” I don’t visualize horses or cows. But, there it is on our cover: a mighty draft horse among the vines.

Writer Kerry Newberry explains the trend of using horses — and other livestock — in the vineyard, to perform some of the work in place of a gas-guzzling, oil-dripping tractor.

After reading the cover story, which starts on page 22, I am not only in awe of horses’ brawn but also their ability to capture the hearts of their owners. Plus, they are good role models: They are hard workers and love what they do.

The other feature is also about hard work and sustainability, but in this case, no animals needed, just the soil-caked hands and dedication of Oregonian Rick Trumbull.

His Milton-Freewater company, Sustainable Soil Solutions, focuses on all-natural soil management in the Walla Walla Valley — on both sides of the state line.

The family-owned business started about 10 years ago, with the goal of teaching people and farmers to be better stewards of the land. Writer Mark Stock has all the details on page 26.

Throughout the departments, you  will find more spots of “green.”

For example, on page 14, writer Jenni Cossey reviews Alice Feiring’s latest book, “Naked Wine: Letting Grapes Do What Comes Naturally.”

We also have a guest commentary from Michele Martin, the program manager for the Carbon Reduction Challenge. In her column, on page 36, she stresses the importance of Oregon wineries to lead the charge on reducing emissions.

August is all about sustainability, and I encourage you to read it cover to cover. Afterward, when you are done, do your part and recycle it, or, better yet, pass it along. 

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