State of the Industry
General Session

Welcome & Introductions

John Aguirre, President, California Association of Winegrape Growers

State of the Industry

The State of the Industry session provides a comprehensive look at every aspect of the wine industry, from what’s being planted to what’s selling. This 2½-hour session features highly regarded speakers and delivers incredible value for attendees who need to understand the market dynamics of the past year and are seeking insight into the market trends that will define the year ahead.

*Session receives 2.5 Hours of Certified Crop Adviser CEU’s for Global Supply and Demand Forecasts

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Mike Veseth
The Wine Economist, Washington

Mike Veseth (pronounced VEE-seth) is editor of The Wine Economist newsletter ( and author of more than a dozen books including Wine Wars (2011), Extreme Wine (2013), Money, Taste & Wine: It’s Complicated! (2015), and Around the World in Eighty Wines (2018). He is a sought-after speaker at wine industry meetings both in the United States and around the world.

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Jeff Bitter
Allied Grape Growers, California

Jeff Bitter is a life-long resident of California. Born into a family vineyard operation in Madera County, Jeff has always had a passion for agriculture and specifically grape growing. Jeff is the President of Allied Grape Growers (AGG), a 500-member grape grower’s cooperative marketing association. AGG sells nearly $100,000,000 worth of grapes annually to wineries, shippers, packers and dehydrators. In addition to managing AGG, Jeff is a fourth-generation winegrape grower and lives on his vineyard property in Madera County.


Danny Brager
Brager Beverage Alcohol Consulting, California

Danny Brager has a wealth of experience in the Beverage Alcohol industry, analyzing trends over many years. He formerly led Nielsen’s Beverage Alcohol Practice Area in the U.S, where he led teams that supported Nielsen’s clients as well as key industry groups and the media. In that role, Danny succinctly provided data driven analysis and insights, focused on the U.S. marketplace environment and consumer/shopper.


Steve Fredricks
Turrentine Brokerage, California

Steve Fredricks joined Turrentine Brokerage in 1991 as a bulk wine broker. Over the years he has established himself as an expert in the sales of bulk wine and grapes, understanding market cycles, and building long term relationships. Steve is currently managing all Turrentine Brokerage operations and directly responsible for Turrentine’s international relationships and strategic alliances in France, Italy, Spain, Australia, Chile and Argentina.


Mario Zepponi
Zepponi & Company, California

Mario Zepponi, principal of Zepponi & Company, has extensive experience performing valuations and negotiating and structuring purchase, sale and lease transactions. He has served as a transaction advisor to several companies, including beverage alcohol brands, winery estates and parties seeking to create strategic alliances. Prior to forming Zepponi & Company, Mario practiced law as a corporate, real estate and food and beverage attorney.

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