California Recognizes Fetzer for Environmental and Economic Leaderships


Our partners at Fetzer Vineyards recently picked up the Governor’s Environmental and Economic Leadership Award (GEELA) for 2018, largely in recognition for their groundbreaking work in zero waste practices. 

The GEELA is California’s highest environmental award and was bestowed upon Fetzer at a special awards ceremony in Sacramento on Dec. 5. GEELA is awarded to individuals, organizations and businesses that have demonstrated exceptional leadership and made notable, voluntary contributions to conserving California's precious resources, protecting and enhancing the environment, building public-private partnerships and strengthening the state's economy.

Fetzer took the win in the Waste Reduction category due to the company’s longstanding and growing commitment to sustainability, in particular through its pacesetting waste management program. According to a statement from the company, Fetzer Vineyards began tracking and reporting waste in 1990, which helped them to become the world's first winery to achieve TRUE Zero Waste certification in 2014, with a diversion rate of over 98%. TRUE Zero Waste certification assess a company’s success against a goal of diverting all solid waste from the landfill, incineration (waste-to-energy) and the environment, according to the TRUE website.

"As the first winery in the world to be TRUE certified, Fetzer Vineyards has demonstrated its leadership in minimizing waste output and efficiently using resources, furthering our goal of developing a zero waste economy for all," said Stephanie Barger, Director of Market Transformation and Development, for TRUE at the U.S. Green Building Council.

"We are very pleased to receive this recognition," said Cindy DeVries, Chief Operating Officer for Fetzer Vineyards in a recent statement, "as it underscores the importance of a focus on waste reduction as critical to our efforts to pursue climate-smart practices in our business."

This GEELA win is Fetzer’s third, following wins and recognition from CalEPA, the state’s environmental protection agency, in 2003 and 2008. Fetzer Vineyards’ work and leadership in this area is resulting in the company having a well-earned reputation for sustainable business practices, something modern consumers are interested in supporting with their purchases.

"This year's GEELA honorees are examples of how innovation, determination and vision can address some of our most significant environmental challenges," said CalEPA Secretary Matthew Rodriquez. "From fighting climate change to reducing waste, their successful efforts are proving that environmentally sustainable practices can grow and support a healthy economy."

Talk to your Breakthru Sales Consultant about how your business can grow alongside Fetzer, and how their pioneering work in sustainability can reach new consumers.
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