McGuire, Dodd lead Senate wine committee

State Sens. Mike McGuire, D-Healdsburg, and Bill Dodd, D-Napa, have been appointed co-chairs of the Senate Select Committee on California’s Wine Industry.

The bipartisan panel oversees issues affecting California’s wine industry, from agricultural issues to labor supply.

“We’ll be working together and be focused on some of the biggest issues facing the thousands of growers and vintners in the coming months,” said McGuire in a statement.

“We need to look at the challenges facing our wine industry and work to identify pragmatic solutions. The committee will review key issues, including innovation in environmental sustainability, farmworker housing and competitiveness in a global marketplace,” Dodd added.

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SSU to hold sustainability conference

Sonoma State University will hold its annual Sustainable Enterprise Conference on April 5. The full-day event includes various sessions held throughout the university’s Student Center.

Business School Dean Bill Silver will open the event with a speech outlining the importance of education in developing a sustainable economy. Sustainability has been a main priority for many local vintners. The Sonoma County Winegrowers trade group has set a goal of having all the county’s vineyards be certified as sustainable by 2019.

Business professor Robert Girling, who founded the conference in 2006, will discuss changes in sustainability within the last decade. Business professor Adele Santana will lead sessions on academic partnerships with local businesses as well as another one on efforts to generate sustainable energy.

For more information, visit www.sustainableenterpriseconference.com.

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Vineyard economics seminar scheduled for Napa

The 22nd annual Vineyard Economics Seminar will be held May 24 at the Napa Valley Marriott. The event is the sponsored by the Wine Symposium Group, a subsidiary of Wine Business Monthly.

Topic sessions include finding employees in a tight labor market; evaluating public policy at the state and federal level; and discussing the latest information to combat vineyard pests and various vine diseases.

Karen Ross, California secretary of agriculture, will address the conference on how sustainability is affecting the wine industry.

For more information, visit http://vineyardeconomics.com/program.

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Compiled by Bill Swindell. Submit items to bill.swindell@pressdemocrat.com.