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Advocacy group attributes 17 percent growth to strong local demand, environmental practices

The Oregon Wine Board is boasting that the state's wine industry "is on a massive tear" after recent retail data showed local wine sales trending up by double-digit percentages in the last year-long period.

More specifically, a recent press release cites Nielsen data showing that sales from Oregon wines increased by 17 percent nationally in the 12-month period ending in July, up from a 14-percent increase at the end of the 2016 calendar year.GRAPHIC FILE PHOTO - The Oregon Wine Board is boasting that the state's wine industry "is on a massive tear" after recent retail data showed local wine sales trending up by double-digit percentages in the last year-long period.

"This is the strongest consumer-driven growth trajectory we've seen in recent memory," Tom Danowski, president of the Oregon Wine Board, said in a press release.

The release compares Oregon's growth of 17-percent to the 2.3 percent growth reported for Washington wine, 3 percent for California and 2.8 percent for American table wine overall. Meanwhile, Oregon's roughly 3.2 million cases shipped around the world per year equates to about 1.1 percent of the wine produced in the United States.

Danowski attributes that growth to Oregonians' demand for local, high-quality wine, as he said bottles priced at more than $15 are "propelling" the growth along with growing acclaim from experts.

The release also attributes the growth to Oregon wineries using "regenerative agriculture" and other environmentally conscious farming practices in their vineyards. It recognizes area B Corps wineries – those certified as meeting specific standards for social and environmental performance, transparency and accountability, including Newberg-area A to Z Wineworks and Dundee-area Winderlea Vineyard and Winery.

While the state wine industry will release a new report this year, its most recent data indicates that Oregon's 702 wineries sustain more than 17,000 jobs with $527 million in annual wages and contributes about $3.35 billion to the state economy.

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