The MWI Board began exploring the idea of a conjunctive labeling program to improve consumer identification and understanding of the region’s wines early in 2018. Given the strong evidence that Conjunctive Labeling programs benefit the regions that enact them, a draft proposal for Mendocino County was crafted by MWI. The language, largely based on the successful Monterey program, was designed for simplicity and minimal impact on wineries.
After a series of regional meetings this year, the draft proposal was revised on 6/20/19 and put to a vote of all stakeholders in Mendocino County. Stakeholders are defined as entities that meet one of two criteria: 1) ownership of vineyard land within Mendocino County, or 2) ownership of a basic permit facility within Mendocino County whose purpose is the production of wine.
The ballot was completed August 5th, 2019 and over 80% of the returned ballots were in favor of conjunctive labeling. Mendocino WineGrowers, Inc (MWI) will now initiate the legislative process for implementing conjunctive labeling in Mendocino County. This means that any wines bottled on or after January 1, 2023 must bear the designation of “Mendocino County” or “Mendocino” on the label. The exception to this is if a wine is labeled with the “Mendocino” AVA or includes “Mendocino” in the AVA, e.g., Mendocino Ridge. Additional details can be found on our website or on the graphic on the back of this letter.
WHAT: Any wine labeled with an AVA that is located entirely within Mendocino County or a vineyard designation within Mendocino County, must also include “Mendocino County” on the label.
PLACEMENT: “Mendocino” (if the AVA falls within the Mendocino AVA boundary) or “Mendocino County” would be placed on the front OR back label.
TYPE SIZE: For containers 188 ml. or larger, type size would be 2 mm. or larger. For containers of 187 ml. or less, type size would not be smaller than 1 mm.
OTHER LABELING: Other AVAs, vineyard designations and/or appellations could also appear on the label (as long as the wine is qualified under TTB regulations).
EFFECTIVE DATE: January 1, 2023