Here at New Clairvaux Abbey we support our monastic life by farming, including cultivating grapes and making wine. We are pleased to announce that our vineyards have now met the exacting standards for organic certification. Our vineyard manager Br. Luis explains:
“Good news! The community recently received news of its organic certification for monastery vineyard blocks St. James and Trinity. This certification follows a three-year probation period required by California Certified Organic Farmers, the largest certifier in the nation, wherein we transform our farming practices to exclude chemicals and farming practices that could pose risks to the health of persons and the land. Our patrons and guests can be assured that we have, in the spirit of Pope Francis’ encyclical, Laudato Si, made decisions for the betterment of the earth and for the enhanced safety of all our valued guests.
Concretely, this certification means that we use only natural and non-synthetic products to control grape diseases. We also promote biodiversity in the vineyard by planting cover crops that attract beneficial insects and keep the soil from being eroded by the wind. Owl boxes also adorn our vineyard now: we’re hoping to attract barn owls to help out with gopher control. There’s more to certification, of course, but this brief description gives you a taste of the type of changes we have made.
For all this we praise God. We are most grateful that we have been able to put into practice some of the ideals taught by the Church through our Holy Father, Pope Francis. It is not easy; it requires sacrifices and extra effort, but it can be done. We pray that this small achievement will encourage us and all our friends to further realize the vision our Church has for the protection and enhancement of our shared home—Earth, and for the promotion of the dignity, health, and safety of all God’s people.”
You can check out our selection of award winning wines at: https://www.newclairvauxvineyard.com/
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