SACRAMENTO, Calif., July 9 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has declared September 2008 California Wine Month for the fourth consecutive year. In the proclamation, the Governor lauds the state's wine community as one of the largest and most successful wine producing regions in the world. California's wineries and winegrape growers produce $19 billion in retail sales in the U.S. They attract national and international tourists, and preserve natural resources by using innovative and environmentally friendly practices for winegrowing and winemaking. (Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20080709/DCW007 ) "Every bottle of California wine served across the globe reflects our excellence and serves as an ambassador for our fantastic lifestyle, cuisine and culture," declares the Governor in the proclamation. As the state's leading advocate, Governor Schwarzenegger has also given his support to the historic partnership between the Wine Institute and the California Travel & Tourism Commission (CTTC). In a national TV campaign, the Governor, First Lady Maria Shriver and wine and culinary personalities are all featured promoting California as the "Capital of Culinary Travel." "We are proud to be recognized by the Governor for the positive impact California wine has on the state, the nation and the world," said Robert P. (Bobby) Koch, President and CEO of Wine Institute. "California vintners and growers are invested for the long term in the land and our communities. We take great pride growing and producing outstanding wines inspired by our diverse regions and made possible by the artists, entrepreneurs and families that our industry attracts." The Governor also applauded the Code of Sustainable Winegrowing Practices. The Wine Institute and the California Association of Winegrape Growers (CAWG) initiated the Code in 2002, which encourages and empowers growers and vintners to adopt sustainable practices. "As the U.S. approaches the milestone of being the No. 1 wine-consuming nation in the world, California's winegrape growers are proud to be part of the positive cultural and economic force of agriculture, family businesses, sustainable winegrowing and ecotourism," said Karen Ross, President of CAWG, whose organization is supporting California Wine Month. Numerous events and promotions across the country are planned for California Wine Month. The centerpiece is a California Wine Rush Consumer Grand Tasting that will "Explore the Regional Diversity of California Wines through Flavor, Sight and Sound" at New York City's Espace event space on September 10 from 5 - 7 pm. Ticket proceeds will benefit the Central Park Conservancy. A separate event for the trade and media is also planned in New York for that day. The Wine Institute is also partnering with winery members, regional winery and grower associations, retailers and restaurants and other organizations with a calendar of California wine events in September. Visit http://www.californiawineevents.com for more information on the New York event and for listings of events in September and throughout the year. California Wine Month partners planning activities for California Wine Month in September 2008 include: Safeway Stores, Vons and Pavilions, the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board, Beverages & More!, P.F. Chang's China Bistro, Fleming's Prime Steakhouse and Wine Bar, Legal Sea Foods, Patina Restaurant Group, Tavistock Restaurant Group Harlem Vintage Wine Shop and Bar, Morrell Wine, Union Square Wines, Zachy's Wine and Liquor. Media partners include the Wall Street Journal, San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles Magazine and the California Restaurant Association. Wine Institute is the association of 1,100 California wineries and wine- related businesses dedicated to public policy advocacy and enhancing the environment for the responsible consumption and enjoyment of wine. California is the fourth largest wine producer in the world. In the U.S., two out of every three bottles enjoyed are California wines. Each year, nearly 20 million tourists visit wine regions throughout the state to explore and enjoy the wines, the cuisine and cultural offerings of California's signature industry. Join us in celebrating California Wine Month in September 2008.
SOURCE Wine Institute