John Reganold is currently Regents Professor of Soil Science and Agroecology at Washington State University.
His career has focused on his interest in agriculture and soil science.
He received his Ph.D. in Soil Science from the University of California at Davis.
Reganold has spent 30-plus years bringing a blend of innovative research and teaching on sustainable farming systems into the mainstream of higher education and food production.
Dr. Reganold has published extensively in scientific journals, magazines, and books, including Science, Nature, and Scientific American.
His former students are on the front lines of sustainability around the world, bringing food security to sub-Saharan Africa for the U.S. Agency for International Development, adapting quinoa to the salty soils of Utah, working on agroecology for Pacific Foods in Tualatin, Oregon, and turning wastes
into resources in Haiti.
Colum Riley got into compost early in life, growing up on the Biodynamic farm in Camphill Village Kimberton Hills in Kimberton, Pennsylvania.
He studied marketing at Berea College, and then earned his MBA from Loyola Marymount University in 2008.
In 2009, he founded Malibu Compost, the first Demeter Certified Biodynamic® Compost in the country.
Since its inception, Malibu Compost has spread Biodynamic compost and compost teas across the U.S., and now has soil retailers in 23 states and online retailers nationwide.
Malibu employs Rudolf Steiner’s associative economics principles in business, partnering with organic dairy families to ensure GMO-free, organic cow manure supplies.
Recently Malibu Compost received a loan from RSF Social Finance to assist with national expansion.
Colum oversees all aspects of Biodynamic compost production on multiple farms, from sourcing inputs and Biodynamic preparations to stringent testing.
Colum speaks to thousands of avid gardeners and farmers every year, introducing and advancing the principles of Biodynamic agriculture across the United States.
He is a member of the U.S. Composting Council and the Association of Compost Producers.
• Compost, Compost Teas, and Carbon Farming
In 2002, Winegrower, Dan Rinke, moved from his home state of Wisconsin to pursue a bachelors degree in Viticulture from California State University, in Fresno.
After earning his degree he focused his attention to apprentice in making wine, so he accepted a position as Assistant Winemaker at Domaine Alfred, a non-certified Biodynamic vineyard close to San Luis Obispo, CA.
It was there Dan learned the basics of how to run a cellar, to care for the wines in barrel and how to grow grapes using Biodynamic farming methods.
After Domaine Alfred, he headed to the Santa Cruz Mountains to work for the Pinot Noir producer Rhys Vineyards. At Rhys, Dan absorbed as much as he could and learned to farm at the highest degree while still respecting the earth and how to craft wines with respect for terroir.
In spring of 2007, Dan became the Winegrower (Vineyard Manager/Winemaker) at Johan Vineyards.
Using what Dan had learned in the cellar at Rhys, all fermentations are un-inoculated and, apart from minimal amounts of sulfites and the occasional tartaric addition, the wines are free of other additives.
"I believe, the use of additives and excessive sulfite additions will interrupt the natural balance of the wine’s biology and chemistry resulting in a lifeless synthetic wine."
Cristian originally joined Emliiana Organic Vineyards in 2004 as the export manager in charge of Emiliana's exports to Europe.
in 2008, he assumed the position of Commercial Director and in 2014 became CEO.
Emiliana Organic Vineyards has 722 acres of certified organic vines and 674 acres of Biodynamic vines, making the company the world's biggest organic and Biodynamic vineyard owner.
Born in Ghent, Belgium, and educated at the University of Paris, Virginie practiced law before moving to Tuscany in 2006, where she pursued her passion for wines by becoming a minority shareholder in Avignonesi in 2007.
In 2009 she became full owner with the clear goal of taking the winery to new levels of excellence.
Today, her focus revolves around Avignonesi’s nuanced terroir, creating wines that highlight the characteristics of the key varietal, Sangiovese, in the historic area of Montepulciano and wines that explore the potential of international varietals such as Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon in the neighbouring area of Cortona.
Erin’s childhood memories of being raised on her grandparent’s self-sustaining and “philosophically organic” farm infused her with a deep passion for the abundance of Nature and the study of horticulture.
In her mid 20’s, she went from classroom to hands-on by building her first greenhouse and growing a diverse array of food, flowers, and herbs on her 10-acre heirloom seed focused nursery farm located in the temperate rainforest region of the Appalachian Mountains.
Needing an educated market in this rural community, she spearheaded her town’s first thriving farmer’s market and developed farm-to-table accounts at local restaurants and schools.
After five successful years of farming, educating elementary students, and grant writing for farm and community endeavors- Erin took her work to a national level, collaborating with leading organic food companies, nonprofits, educational systems, thought leaders, chefs, and authors on nutrition, farming, food systems, and much more.
The culmination of her work led her to partner with Demeter USA in 2013 with the aligned mission of educating farmers, consumers, and retailers.
Demeter’s vision - to “Heal the Planet through Agriculture” - is accomplished by advancing one of the original methods of regenerative agriculture: the International standard of Biodynamic farming.
As Director of Business Development for Demeter USA, Erin connects brands and people to the farm and farmer and advocates for the health of our planet and people through the food we eat.
• Biodynamic 101: An Introduction
Barbara Steele founded Cowhorn Vineyard & Garden in southern Oregon with her husband Bill Steele in 2002.
Together they grow and make Cowhorn wines exclusively from the Cowhorn estate vineyard. Barbara also oversees marketing, sales, events and member relations – which leaves just enough time to enjoy her home and garden, her dogs, and her friends and family.
After earning an MBA, Barbara started a career in public accounting and began helping companies build stronger financial controls and operations. Her last finance related position was working as the CFO for Academy Studios, a leading designer/fabricator of exhibits for museums, zoos and aquariums.
Prior to founding Cowhorn, Barbara spent several years working with organic farms in California, where she and Bill developed their vision for a model agricultural business that enhances the earth and enriches the local community.
• Biodynamic Rhones
Chad Stock describes his journey into wine this way: "As a young winemaker and entrepreneur, the most interesting thing I can offer to say has nothing to do with where I have been or what I have achieved. I must inform you of my intentions, where I am headed, and why my work has drawn so much attention.
I represent all that is new and different in the Oregon wine industry. Unlike the pioneers of the Oregon wine industry, who started with an idea that lead them to a place, my love for Oregon, where I discovered wine, has lead me to search for the greatest possible wines that could be produced in this place.
In 2011, Minimus was created with the intention of questioning everything that was being done in Oregon. Not convinced that Pinot Noir was the ideal grape for all sites in the Willamette Valley lead me to plant and experiment with certain alternative varietals and to developing a direct import program of selected European varieties that had never been available to wineries in Oregon, or the United States.
Exploring the use of alternative fermentation and maturation vessels was also part of the exploration and questioning. Helping to develop the first American Amphorae, and produce wine from them, producing Oregon’s first Flor aged wines, and importing the first barrels made of chestnut wood into Oregon are part of the exploration process. This is what I am known for and who I am."
• Portlandia Goes BD: Natural Wines and Biodynamic Vines in Oregon
Pam is currently consulting to Demeter USA, as Conference Program Director for the International Biodynamic Wine Conference.
The leading specialist on U.S. wines from organic and Biodynamic vines, she is the author and publisher of seven (formerly available) apps (Organically Napa, Organically Sonoma, Biodynamic Wine Finder) as well as forthcoming new web sites and books for the wine industry and consumers.
She holds a certificate in wine studies from U. C. Berkeley Extension and has studied wine at U.C. Davis and the North American Sommelier Association.
A digital media pioneer, Pam produced dozens of films for Apple, PBS, Turner, and others and created major, groundbreaking, interactive projects for Apple and Intel. Other former clients include Jerry Garcia, the Dalai Lama, and the U.N. Sec. General.
Pam came to the world of wine via health and the environment. As the editor in chief of Healthcentral.com (a a content dotcom that was a $70 million IPO), DNA.com (Jim Clark's genetics company) and DNADirect.com as well as editor and site producer for dozens of other clients including the California Medical Association and Time Warner Cable's interactive television channel on health in the 1990s, she worked closely with leading epidemiologists, and genetics researchers from Harvard, Stanford, and Johns Hopkins, launching WebMD's two channels on genetics (one for consumers and one for physicians) in 2001.
A communicator who put health risks into perspective on many fronts, she became aware of the impacts to human, plant animal, and ecosystem health from conventional and "sustainable" vineyard farming practices and decided to focus on finding and writing about the best wines from organic or Biodynamic vines and wrote seven apps for consumers.
Described by Alder Yarrow (of Jancis Robinson.com) as "the go to person on organic and Biodynamic wines," she has been featured on Carol Grieves podcast series Food Integrity Now, speaking about organic and Biodynamic wines, and her apps were featured (on Earth Day) in the Los Angeles Times. She also has an online blog.
She has written on organic and Biodynamic wines for Beverage Media Group (a wine merchant publication), and Wines & Vines, the leading magazine for the wine industry, as well as for Wine Enthusiast, reaching a wide consumer audience.
Her latest industry articles focus on business opportunities for wineries to expand into the growing organic and Biodynamic marketplaces.
As an environmental journalist, she also writes about pesticides, including glyphosate, and is currently covering the hearings on glyphosate for upcoming jury trials on Roundup and cancer. Her work has been featured in Civil Eats and on PRI.
Pam has also moderated events for Demeter USA for both the general public and industry audiences in California and Oregon. In 2017, she was a guest lecturer at Santa Rosa Community College in Sonoma County in California.
She dreams of a day when no one will have to ask, "Is this wine organic or Biodynamic?"...because they all are.
Pam is currently seeking a publisher for new books (a scheduled project with U.C. Press fell through) to showcase the 50+ interviews she has conducted with leading Biodynamic wine experts. She is also working on (and seeking sponsors for) BiodynamicWineFinder.com, a new subscription based, online, Biodynamic wine portal for consumers and the wine industry.
(Photo: With Fred Kirschenmann, former Board Member, Demeter USA)
Born and raised in New York State, Eric developed his passion for winegrowing while studying agriculture at Cornell University.
After spending several years in Washington’s Yakima Valley, he immersed himself in the old-world culture and traditions of France over two exceptional vintages – 1995 in Bordeaux at Baron Philippe de Rothschild of Pauillac, and 1996 in Burgundy at Domaine Comte Armand of Pommard and Domaine Jacques Prieur of Meursault.
Apprenticing alongside men and women who have tended the same vineyards and wines through countless seasons reinforced Eric’s respect for the intrinsic connection between land, people and the wine they produce.
Upon returning to the United States, and after a year of collaborating on the wines at Bonny Doon in Santa Cruz, Eric settled in Western Sonoma County and spent four years as the associate winemaker for Dehlinger. Working with one of the area’s finest estate producers enhanced his appreciation for the world-class wine grown in this region.
In 2002, Eric established Radio-Coteau, focusing on the North Coast vineyards of western Sonoma County and Anderson Valley. With their benchland locations, well-drained soils, exposure to capricious marine air and fog, these sites host grapes naturally suited to their surrounding elements.
This natural selection afforded Eric an opportunity to refine his Old World experiences while working with New World grapes.
For more than a decade, he and his winegrowing team have strived to balance nature’s expression with a delicate, but disciplined human touch in these handcrafted wines.
• Biodynamic Pinot Noir
Woody Tasch, the Founder of the Slow Money Institute, is the author of Inquiries into the Nature of Slow Money: Investing as if Food, Farms and Fertility Mattered, which sparked a movement and led to the flow of more than $60 million to hundreds of local and organic food enterprises around the country.
In 2017, he published his second book, SOIL: Notes Towards the Theory and Practice of Nurture Capital, which one early reviewer calls “Walden for the 21st Century.”
Woody is the former Chairman and CEO of Investors' Circle, one of the country’s oldest angel networks and the only one dedicated to sustainability, steering more than $200 million into 300 early stage companies since 1992.
He was previously Treasurer of the Jessie Smith Noyes Foundation, where he pioneered mission related investing. He was also founding chairman of the Community Development Venture Capital Alliance. Utne Reader named Woody one of “25 Visionaries Who Are Changing Your World.”
Jennifer Tincknell has nearly three decades of experience in the wine industry, which includes national sales, distribution management, wine buying and supplier relations.
Fluent in French and Italian from studies at University of California at Berkeley, Jennifer has traveled extensively throughout the major wine regions in Europe, South America and New Zealand on behalf of employers and clients in her consulting business Tincknell & Tincknell, Inc.
At Eco Terreno, Jennifer is building the distribution network, providing hands on marketing and sales support and deepening relationships with key accounts, media and customers.
Her growing interest in organic and Biodynamic vines and wines extends into assisting with grape sales and public relations.
• Wines By The Glass
Sebastian supervises organic and Biodynamic certifications, as well as social responsibility, fair trade, environmental projects, and research initiatives.
Emiliana Organic Vineyards has 722 acres of certified organic vines and 674 acres of Biodynamic vines, making the company the world's biggest organic and Biodynamic vineyard owner.
Biodynamic Producer Day
• Scaling Up
Doug Tunnell founded Brick House Vineyards in 1990. It is one of Oregon’s oldest certified organic wine estates.
Demeter certified Biodynamic since 2005, Brick House produces Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Gamay Noir on a 40 acre farm located on Ribbon Ridge, overlooking Oregon’s Willamette Valley.
• Biodynamic Pinot Noir
Monty Waldin is the first writer to specialize in organic and Biodynamic wine.
His latest book Biodynamic Wine (2016, Infinite Ideas) “made me realise I knew next to nothing about Biodynamics,” said JancisRobinson.com. Fully illustrated and clearly written with none of the usual biodynamic mumbo jumbo, Biodynamic Wine aims to provide professional wine-growers, wine merchants, students on sommelier, WSET or Master of Wine education programs and wine lovers to understand Biodynamic winegrowing and winemaking, its theories and practical realities, and its pros and its cons.
Monty’s introduction to organics came early as both his (English) parents and grandparents grew their own organic fruit and vegetables.
When Monty worked in Bordeaux in his teens, he first encountered the term “terroir-driven," yet it was clear Bordeaux’s winegrowing and winemaking practices were overly reliant on often needless and environmentally damaging intervention that diminished, rather than enhanced the terroir.
Monty’s first book, The Organic Wine Guide, was written in 1998 whilst working for California’s organic and Biodynamic pioneers - the Fetzer family - on their Home Ranch in Redwood Valley, Mendocino County. Monty created a Biodynamic vegetable garden for the vineyard workers there in a ‘vinegarden’ biodiversity project.
When he returned home to England, his book had won Britain’s Wine Guide of the Year.
Further hands on experiences, this time winemaking in Chile, helped shape Monty’s next book, Wines of South America (2003), which won America’s prestigious James Beard Award.
In 2007 Monty moved to Roussillon in France to film Château Monty, the first observational TV documentary on Biodynamic winegrowing as he made 6,000 bottles of red wine from Carignan grapes. In 2014 he was filmed again, this time making Monty’s Pet Nat, England’s first Pétillant Natural fizz from Biodynamic Chardonnay grapes grown by Albury Vineyard in Surrey near London.
Monty writes the entries on Biodynamic, organic, and natural wine for Jancis Robinson MW & Julia Harding MW’s Oxford Companion to Wine.
His book on Biodynamic Gardening (Dorling Kindersley, 2015) was called “a new step forward for biodynamics” by the global centre for biodynamic research, the Goetheanum in Switzerland.
Monty is Decanter’s World Wine Awards head tasting judge for Tuscany, where his Italian partner Silvana and their son, Arthur, live. His photography has featured in leading international wine magazines and in Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Guide. His other books on wine include Monty Waldin’s Best Biodynamic Wines (Floris, 2013), and wine travel guides on Bordeaux (2005) and Tuscany (2006).
• Moderator, The Biodynamic Marketplace: The Business Proposition
• Panelist, Through a Biodynamic Lens: Managing Disease, Pest and Weed Control in the Vineyard
• Keynote Address - State of Biodynamic Wine: An International Perspective
• Moderator, The Great Estates: Why the World's Best Wines Come from Biodynamic Vines
• Moderator, Next Gen Biodynamic Winemakers
• Moderator, Biodynamics Abroad – International Perspectives
Jeffrey Weissler has devoted his career to the wine world. 25 years in wholesale and retail in the NY Metro market, followed by the last 10 in Oregon. Since 2004, his focus has been on holistic farming paired with non-inoculated wine making and creating a language that helps make wine relatable and accessible to everyone.
As part of this work Jeff participated in a nine month Biodynamic farming course at the Rudolf Steiner College in Fair Oaks, California. During this time he was working on an educational platform with a tag line of “vital choices for palate & planet” called ConsciousWines.com that eventually led to the opening of Pairings Portland Wine Shop & Bar in Portland, Oregon in 2013.
At Pairings, he emphasizes an approach to wine that is both educational and fun, matching wines in non-conventional ways. Imagine Biodynamic and natural wines paired to adjectives, moods, zodiac signs, your dog, and even comic book characters as a way to make these wines approachable to the average consumer.
In 2018, he plans to debut a year long wine education series called "Wine and a Bagel” focusing on regions of Italy and France. This series will provide in depth wine knowledge to everyone: from those who are just discovering their love of wine, to service industry employees and longtime wine aficionados.
• Portlandia Goes BD
Chris Williams met Jimi Brooks in 1997 by happenstance, selling Jimi motorcycle parts for an old Moto Guzzi. The two became fast friends, and Chris soon began working at the winery – first by working wine club events.
Chris soon found himself helping Jimi in Brooks’ cellar, and went on to work alongside Jimi at WillaKenzie Estate and Maysara Winery.
When Jimi passed away suddenly in 2004, Chris was among the many friends and winemakers who stepped in and helped make Jimi’s wine that year.
Chris became Brooks’ full time winemaker in 2005 and has brought continuity to Brooks wines, sharing Jimi’s philosophy and style, and continuously showcasing the elegance of small production Riesling and Pinot Noir from the Willamette Valley.
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