The Lodi Rules for Sustainable Winegrowing is California’s first 3rd party-certified sustainable winegrowing program. The original standards were launched in 2005, and in 2012 a thorough revision was accredited by Protected Harvest. The Lodi Rules takes a comprehensive approach to farming that goes beyond just pest management to promote practices that enhance biodiversity, water and air quality, soil health, and employee and community well-being.
There are 101 farming practice standards in six chapters: Business Management, Human Resources, Ecosystem Management, Soil Management, Water Management, and Pest Management. The Lodi Rules are designed to lead to measurable improvements in the environmental health of the surrounding ecosystem, society-at-large, and wine quality.
All standards have been peer-reviewed by scientists, members of the academic community, and environmental organizations before accreditation by Protected Harvest. Protected Harvest has received Consumers Union’s highest rating as an eco-label certifier.
Certification has two components: The Lodi Rules practice standards, and a Pesticide Environmental Assessment System (PEAS) that measure the total impact of all organic and synthetic pesticides used during the year. Growers are audited annually by a third party to verify their farming practices, and may not exceed a maximum number of points calculated using PEAS. Certification is awarded to an individual vineyard annually.
In 2012 20,000 acres were “Certified Green” in the Lodi Appellation, and an additional 6,000 acres were certified in other regions throughout California. Approximately 20 wineries produce wines baring the Lodi Rules seal. A bottle of wine must be at least 85% from certified sustainable vineyards to use the logo on their label.