Yep- it is game on for harvest 2013 from the sights and stories around here in Napa County. Mostly the "early" varietals so far, your lower alcohol wines. I've been hearing from several folks with random crush related questions around their compliance. Nothing like waiting til the last minute! If you haven't seen it already- take a look at my last post with some suggestions for preparing your harvest compliance tasks. The questions I'm getting are mostly around the topic of weigh tags. Those (regulated) documents used for tracking (& buying & selling) loads of grapes. Do you know whether your weigh tags meet federal, state & county requirements?
A weigh tag, or the official state term weighmaster certificate is required for documenting a load of grapes that is being bought or sold. Chances are if you have a scale at your winery you also have a weighmaster license from the CDFA/DMS and complete weighmaster certificates for all your grape loads. But how do you know if you are completing them correctly to meet TTB, CDFA and county requirements? Two out of three of these agencies will view them in the event of an audit.
It's not too late to get your weigh tags dialed in! I've put together a training course specific to harvest compliance topics, namely weigh tags, harvest work orders and tracking wine "production" for TTB reporting purposes. Right now- because it is THE season it is on SALE.
There are very specific items and details that are either required to be part of or filled in on your harvest records. This course explains what those are on each of the different types of documents and also shows specific examples of what they look like in a "real world" style.
You can take a look at full course info and purchase here: Crash Course for Crush
Harvest is a crazy enough time without adding to it in your recordkeeping. A little training can go a long way towards saving your sanity in these next few months. And peace of mind down the road should any government officials come a calling.