SAN FRANCISCO — Wine Institute has released a new book, Down to Earth: A Seasonal Tour of Sustainable Winegrowing in California, a consumer-friendly guide to environmentally and socially responsible practices that shows how sustainability influences California vintners and growers throughout the year as they grow and make wines. The book was written by Janet Fletcher and photographed by George Rose, both award-winning journalists.

Fifteen vintners and growers are profiled in Down to Earth, and they are a sampling of the thousands who have participated in education, self-assessment and certification programs by the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance and other state sustainability organizations which represent more than three-quarters of California’s wine production and winegrape acreage. The book also includes a dozen seasonal recipes, timed to what’s fresh in the garden.

“California makes 90 percent of our nation’s wine and is the fourth largest producer in the world, so the scale and scope of adoption of sustainable practices are tremendous across the state’s wine regions,” said Robert P. (Bobby) Koch, Wine Institute President and CEO. “The stories of the vintners and growers depict the motivation and passion of our wine community in caring for people and the environment.”

“Consumers like to know how their wines are grown and made,” added Allison Jordan, Wine Institute Vice President of Environmental Affairs. “Down to Earth shows readers that managing for the long term makes sense for the family owned vineyards and wineries that want to pass on a thriving business to the next generation.”

The 256-page book is $40 and available for purchase at Its release coincides with Wine Institute’s “Down to Earth” month celebration in April when visitors can enjoy some 40 green-themed events, such as eco-tours and Earth Day parties, at wineries throughout California. See:

About Wine Institute
Wine Institute is the association of 1,000 California wineries and wine-related businesses dedicated to enhancing the environment for the responsible production, consumption and enjoyment of wine.  California is the fourth largest wine producer in the world, making 90 percent of all U.S. wine and three out of every five bottles enjoyed in the U.S.  Each year, 21 million tourists visit wine regions throughout the state to explore and enjoy the wines, the cuisine and cultural offerings associated with California’s signature industry. Go to: for more information.

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Reviews from the Down to Earth Book Jacket

Down to Earth is more than a phrase in this beautiful book; it’s a philosophy of what it means to be green in California wine. With regional overviews, mouthwatering recipes, and producer profiles, Janet Fletcher’s compelling storytelling paired with George Rose’s world-class photography combine in a seasonal feast for the mind and the eyes.”
Leslie Sbrocco, Wine Consultant; Author of The Simple & Savvy Wine Guide; and Television Host, “Check Please! Bay Area”

“How wonderful to see sustainability become a mainstay in our vocabulary. Explaining a concept that can be difficult to grasp, Down to Earth speaks to the novice wine consumer about the meaning of sustainability with thoughtful language and beautiful imagery. It also speaks to the wine professional –celebrating the incredible work that our industry has achieved and reminding us of the ways in which sustainability happens all year round.”
Emily Wines MS, Beverage Director, Kimpton Hotels and Restaurants

“After years of following its progress, I’m delighted to see the Californian wine industry emerge as a leader in sustainable winegrowing. Down to Earth documents the journey. These stories of individuals and families who have put the sustainable ethos at the heart of their businesses should inspire wine lovers around the globe.”
Sarah Kemp, Publishing Director, Decanter

“Enhancing the sustainability of agriculture is a critical and ongoing process. Down to Earth highlights some forward-thinking winegrowers who are leading the charge.”
Mike Sweeney, Executive Director, The Nature Conservancy of California

Note to Editors: To download a Down to Earth book press kit, go to:

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