This week, the Lodi Winegrape Commission welcomed new members to the Lodi Winegrape Commission and two new board of directors.

The Lodi Winegrape Commission is proud to announce the appointment of officers and members of the Board of Directors. The Commission is currently accepting applications for the positions of Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Member-at-large. Any fair-minded person who is interested in serving on the Board of Directors of the Lodi Winegrape Commission is welcome to apply.

Welcome to our blog. We hope you enjoy the many articles we have and be up to date with what is happening with us in the wine industry. Our blog is dedicated to the wine grape industry, and the Lodi Winegrape Commission. We have many things to be excited about. Our new website is now live!. Read more about lodi grape harvest 2020 and let us know what you think.


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Lodi-Winegrape-Commission-Appoints-Paul-R-Marsh-CS-Lodi-VisitorLODI, Calif. – August 9, 2021 – The new 2021-2022 board of directors took office during the July meeting of the Lodi Winegrape Commission. Incumbent alternate Jason Eells joins current commissioners Phil Abba, Bruce Fry, Curt Gillespie, Matt Lauchland, Tom Murphy, Diego Olagaray, Aaron Shinn and Brandon Sywassink. Joe Larranaga joins current alternates Dirk Heuvel, Joan Kautz, Jacylyn Stokes, Todd Maley, Colton Machado, Mitch Spaletta, Garret Schaefer and Scott Armolea.

The Lodi Winegrape Commission, founded in 1991 as the grower-centric force driving the Lodi American Viticultural Area (AVA), comprises 750 winegrowers who cultivate more than 100,000 acres of winegrapes. Through marketing, education, research, and sustainable winegrowing initiatives, the Commission has helped to consolidate Lodi’s leadership in viticulture and elevate its image as a premium winegrowing area throughout the years. The California-based nonprofit will celebrate its 30th anniversary in 2021. The board of directors, which is made up of nine commissioners and nine alternates, offers guidance and advice on behalf of the region’s winegrowing community.

Shinn was chosen chair, Olagaray vice chair, Gillespie secretary, and Sywassink treasurer during the July meeting. Shinn is a co-owner of Round Valley Ranches, Inc., a Lodi-based full-service vineyard management firm, and a bachelor of science in agricultural business graduate of California State University, Fresno. Shinn has been a member of the Commission’s board of directors since 2015, previously serving as vice chair (2020-2021). He is also a member of the California Winegrape Inspection Advisory Board and the head of the Commission’s LODI RULES Committee.

“It has been a joy serving on the board of directors of the Lodi Winegrape Commission for the last six years,” Shinn adds. “It is a pleasure to work with such a knowledgeable and dedicated team on behalf of a whole agricultural community as we continue to advance Lodi in the areas of recognition, quality, innovation, and sustainability.”

Moving up to commissioner, Eells is the owner/operator of Arbor Vineyards, Eells Family Farm, and Mettler Family Vineyards. He is a veteran of the United States Navy. Eells, a former president of the Lodi District Grape Growers Association (LDGGA) and a former member of the San Joaquin County Farm Bureau’s board of directors, says, “I am motivated to continue my service on the board of directors to carry on the efforts to promote higher demand for Lodi winegrapes and wine.”

Larranaga is a farm manager with Pacific Agri Lands vineyard management and the proprietor of Larranaga Vineyard, a 10-acre block of Cabernet Sauvignon. Larranaga earned a bachelor’s degree in plant science from California State University, Fresno, after earning an associate degree from San Joaquin Delta College. “My aim is to guarantee that we are portraying Lodi winegrowers in the greatest possible way,” says Larranaga. I’m looking forward to learning more about our business as a result of my service.”

“We are fortunate to have such a competent and varied board of directors who have been so involved with the Commission as well as our agricultural community,” said Stuart Spencer, Executive Director of the Lodi Winegrape Commission. “Through the Commission’s main objectives of promotion, research, and education, I am looking forward to working with the group to improve the region’s image and profitability.”

Rolling off the board of directors is commissioner Kendra Altnow of LangeTwins Family Winery & Vineyards. Altnow has served on the board of directors non-consecutively for 11 years, most recently as chair (2019-2021). Altnow continues to be active in Commission initiatives and currently serves on the Grower Marketing Committee.

The Lodi Winegrape Commission is a non-profit organization that promotes the cultivation of wine grapes in

Established in 1991, the Lodi Winegrape Commission represents the common interests of Lodi winegrowers with programs in marketing, education, research, and sustainable viticulture.  The Commission collectively and effectively promotes Lodi’s vibrant, multi-generational farming community and California’s most dynamic wine region. Comprised of nine commissioners and nine alternates, the board of directors provides direction and input on behalf of the region’s 750 winegrowers. For more information about the Lodi Winegrape Commission, visit 

The American Viticultural Area of Lodi (AVA)

Lodi is 40 miles south of Sacramento and 90 miles east of San Francisco, and has been a historic winegrowing area since the 1850s. Lodi’s Mediterranean climate and unique soils enable farmers to plant 125 different wine grape types, making it the most varied winegrowing area in the United States. There are also 85 boutique wineries in the area that specialize in small-lot, handcrafted wines that have won significant honors in national and international wine competitions. 

Lodi is a natural pioneer in environmentally friendly viticulture. LODI RULES is America’s first sustainable winegrowing program, developed by California growers and certified by world-renowned experts. The curriculum promotes ecologically and socially responsible methods while keeping economic viability in mind for long-term company success. It is held to a high level of scientific rigor and quality. Today, more than 55,000 acres in California, Washington, and Israel have been recognized. Visit and for more information about the Lodi AVA and LODI RULES.


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Lodi Winegrape Commission invites you to the annual Wine Walk and Wine Dinner to be held on June 8 at 7:30 p.m. at the Lodi Community Center. The program will feature the wonderful wine of the Lodi Winegrape Commission. The event will be followed by dinner in the center’s banquet room.. Read more about lodi wine production and let us know what you think.

This article broadly covered the following related topics:

  • lodi grape harvest 2020
  • lodi wine map 2021
  • lodi wine production
  • lodi wine and chocolate 2021
  • wine grape commission
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