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New Recommendations on Winery Tastings & Events

California Governor Newsom called on Sunday, March 15, for the closure of bars, pubs and wineries in the state to help curtail the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

The closure recommendation applies only to winery tasting activities and events. The purchase and pick up of wine and winery business and production operations are not impacted.

The Governor also called on restaurants to reduce occupancy by half to facilitate social distancing. A restaurant is defined as a business that derives 51% or more of gross sales from food prepared onsite.

Following the Governor’s announcement today, we participated in a call with his office and offer the following recommendations to members based on current information:

  • Discontinue consumer tastings and events.
  • Allow consumers into the winery only for the purchase and pick up of wine.
  • Intensify cleaning and sanitation procedures to ensure visitor and employee safety.
  • Implement social distancing in operations, defined as maintaining a distance of six feet or more from another person.
  • Follow the recommendations of the CDC and California Department of Public Health– wash hands frequently, avoid close contact, avoid touching the face, cover sneezes and coughs, remain at home when sick, and take additional precautions if elderly or at-risk.

Wine Institute will continue to monitor and provide updates on the current situation here.