The Evolution of Wineries in the PA Farm Show
(From PA Wines Membership Crush January 2016)
With the Farm Show success and 100th year already behind us, the PWA wanted to take a moment to give you a brief synopsis of the evolution of wineries participating in the event…
It has been more than 20 years since PA Wines has had the opportunity to showcase wines in the Farm Show. Prior to, wine was not recognized as an agricultural commodity at the Farm Show. Through vigorous field work and constant communication efforts by our then lobbyist, Fran O’Brien and then PWA Vice President, Bob Mazza, PA Wine was given an opportunity to showcase.
The first year was considered a pilot program, in which all proceeds, meaning the entire gross receipts of Mazza Vineyards wine sold at the show was donated to the Farm Show Scholarship Foundation. Once the Farm Show saw PA Wines as a viable commodity they opened their doors every year since to allowing in 2016, thirty two wineries to participate. What started out as one winery selling wine from a clothed table and donating all of their proceeds to the Farm Show Scholarship Foundation has evolved to thirty two wineries sampling and selling their wines from a tasting counter in a premium location.
Each year, a portion of the registration fee is donated to the Farm Show Scholarship Foundation. This year the PA Wineries contributed $3,185 to the Foundation. Throughout the years, the Pennsylvania wineries have contributed more than $50,000 to the foundation as part of their involvement in the Farm Show.
Having served on the PWA board and currently as a Farm Show Commissioner since the Ridge administration, Bob Mazza has been instrumental in his efforts for advocating for the inclusion of PA Wines at the Farm Show and for garnering recognition for wine and grapes as a distinct sector in agriculture. On behalf of the PWA we would like to show our sincere appreciation and thanks for Bob’s dedication to the industry and hope that our members are able to see the “fruits” of his labor.