Elkton hits the big time with its own American Viticultural Area designation

Elkton, the Douglas County hamlet along the banks of the Umpqua River, once best known for Arlene’s cafe, is Oregon’s latest American Viticultural Area after receiving approval from the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau this week.
Some how it’s hard to imagine anyone from the nation’s capitol could find Elkton on a map, much less see its potential impact in the wine world.
The Elkton Oregon or Elkton OR — not Elkton, Ore. — AVA is contained within the Umpqua Valley AVA, whichl entirely within the greater Southern Oregon AVA. It becomes Oregon’s 17th AVA.
By gaining AVA status, winegrowers and winemakers within the Elkton Oregon AVA have a new marketing advantage in describing the origin of their wines. Likewise, consumers can pinpoint where the wine comes from. The federal ruling is effective March 7.
According to the Oregon Wine Board, the newest AVA fulfills wine pioneer Ken Thomason’s dream of growing world class cool climate Pinot noir and white grapes where the Umpqua makes a distinct westward surge, not far from the town’s eight-man football field.
Thomason began planting grapes in 1972 on a west facing bench two miles east of Elkton at a site now owned by Mike and Vonnie Landt of Rivers Edge Winery. Micro climates are common in the coast range and the Elkton climate is quite different from the prevailing perceptions of the surrounding areas. The community is 36 miles from the Pacific Ocean and subject to a strong marine influence with daily sea breezes and fog penetrating into the Umpqua River Valley. As a result, Elkton remains cool, maritime and temperate, which the which turns out ideal for the varieties that Thomason originally planted.
The effort to obtain the Elkton Oregon AVA was aided by Greg Jones of Southern Oregon University, who prepared and submitted the petition.

From Salem, this morning, Secretary of State Kate Brown warns Oregon companies to be alert for a mailing deceptively looking like an official state notice.
Businesses have reported receiving an official-looking invoice entitled, “Compliance Filings Center — Annual Minutes Compliance Notice.” The mailing requests detailed information about the business and a $150 “Certificate of Minutes” preparation fee. The invoice lists a return address of 4676 Commercial Street SE, #169, Salem, OR 97302.
However, it’s not from the Oregon Corporation Division
An example of the scam is can be seen here.
While the invoice contains references to Oregon business law, businesses receiving this mailing are advised that they can prepare annual minutes and corporate records themselves without paying this fee.

From the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency, we hear new and beginning farmers and ranchers in Oregon have an agricultural microloan option.
As of Jan. 15, the Farm Service Agency will offer a microloan to farmers and ranchers with credit needs of $35,000 or less. The loan’s advantage is a streamlined application and simplified qualification process.
In 2012, the Farm Service Agency provided $54.3 million in farm loan assistance to agricultural producers of all sizes in Oregon. The interest rate for microloans is 1.25 percent.
The Jackson County Farm Service Agency office telephone number is 541-776-4270 .

This is from U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley ‘s press secretary Jamal Raad:

Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley announced he has been awarded the chairmanship of a subcommittee of the Senate Banking Committee, the Subcommittee on Economic Policy. This subcommittee has jurisdiction over issues related to economic growth, employment and price stability, as well as monetary policy and small business lending. It also has oversight of the new Financial Stability Oversight Council, an important new coordinating body charged by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act with advancing financial sector reforms.
“We need an economy that creates opportunities and good jobs for everyone who’s willing to work hard,” Merkley said. “Too many Oregonians are still out of work, and too many who work are scrimping and scraping just to tread water. I look forward to using my new role as subcommittee chairman to push for pro-growth policies that give working families and small businesses across Oregon the chance to get ahead.”

Other issues the subcommittee has jurisdiction over are money and credit, including currency, coinage and notes; prices of commodities, rents and services; economic stabilization; financial aid to commerce and industry; loan guarantees; flood insurance; and disaster assistance.

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    Greg Stiles

    Covering the Southern Oregon business and economy since 2001. Read Full
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