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Vintners Rush To Pick Grapes After Storms

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(Sacramento, CA)
Tuesday, October 26, 2010

An unusually cool summer delayed the grape harvest…leaving more fruit on the vine than usual for this time of year.

Now, vintners are scrambling to finish the harvest before grapes start getting moldy after being drenched by the weekend storm.

Nick Frey heads the Sonoma County Wine Grape Commission. He says getting heavy farm equipment through the muddy vineyards complicates the harvest.

"Depending on your vineyard and whether you had a permanent cover crop you could have a problem with mud. So if that's the case and the grapes are ready to go growers are going to get tractors in there that will handle the mud and one way or the other they'll get the grapes out."

Frey says as much as 15% of Sonoma County's grapes are still on the vine.

The growers have little time left; another storm is expected to begin Thursday.

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