Trefethen’s Latest Move Aimed at Sustainability

Sustainability-motivated moves have continued at Trefethen Family Vineyards, with the family-owned Napa, California company recently making another environmentally conscious announcement.

The company announced it was among the first to acquire two Monarch MK-V fully-electric, driver-optional smart tractors that combine electrification, automation, and data analysis to help farmers reduce their carbon footprint, improve field safety, and streamline farming operations.

“Pairing these Monarch tractors with the solar production on our vineyard will directly and significantly lower our carbon footprint,” said Hailey Trefethen, who leads sustainability efforts for her family’s company. “We couldn’t be more excited about the technology and clean energy these tractors bring to the industry and our property.”

According to Monarch, utilizing an MK-V in place of a comparable diesel tractor is the equivalent emission reduction of removing 14 passenger vehicles from the road. Nearly 25% of global emissions result from agriculture. 

Sustainability has been a core value since Trefethen’s founding in 1968. The Trefethen family installed a system to capture and recycle all winery process water and by providing every employee with healthcare and retirement benefits. 

in 2021, Trefethen was the first winery to install Earthly Labs® CiCi® technology in their cellar, as a pilot study, to capture carbon dioxide from fermentations.

There are many other examples of the winery taking serious thought and care with the land in Napa Valley they cultivate.

In 2022, Trefethen was recognized for its sustainability efforts by earning California Green Medal EnvironmentAward. Through years of work, Trefethen has developed a thriving ecosystem that limits its dependence on outside resources and is resilient in the face of changing energy, climate, and wine-growing challenges.

CEO Jon Ruel drove to be a Certified California Sustainable Vineyard & Winery along with boasting Napa Valley Green Land and Winery.

Ruel said he really brought his ecological thinking forward in that.

“I wasn’t always a vineyard guy and wasn’t always a farmer,” he said in a previous interview with Vintner Magazine, 

For many years, Ruel was a research scientist, specifically in ecology and environmental science.

“What you learn in ecology is that everything is related. Nothing exists in a vacuum,” he said. “So whether it’s a butterfly, a bear, or a cluster of grapes, it depends on other organisms and the natural environment around it. And it’s the interactions between those species and the climate of the soil that determines the outcome of any one species.”

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