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Sheppard-Sothebys

Judge Lets Cosentino Dodge $1.2 Million In Grower Payment Demands

An administrative law judge has ruled that Yountville’s Cosentino Winery can buy winegrapes this year despite owing previous growers $1,197,442 for fruit from the 2007 and 2008 vintages.

After a hearing in Oakland on August 31, the judge delayed until November a California Department of Food and Agriculture request that would have prevented Cosentino from buying 2009 grapes until it could prove it had settled its accounts.

The name of the judge was not available at publication time nor was the decision.

VIP Subscribers click here to read the complete, un-redacted article.

CDFA ACTION FILED IN MAY

According to CDFA Director of Public Affairs Director Steve Lyle, the Market Enforcement Branch “served an Accusation against Cosentino Signature Enterprises — dba Cosentino Winery — on May 19, May 2009 as a result of a failure to pay wine grape growers for grapes purchased in 2007 and in 2008.

“The amount due to growers,” Lyle said in an email, “is almost $1.2 million. Cosentino Winery submitted a Notice of Defense and on August 31, 2009, the hearing was scheduled at the Office of Administrative Hearing in Oakland.

“The hearing was held.” Lyle said, “However, the matter has been held until November in order for Cosentino Winery to provide documentation to support its claims that it has obtained settlements with the growers.”

According to the CDFA’s Accusation document, the Market Enforcement Branch sought to revoke Cosentino’s license to process wine grapes.

(The full text of this article is available to VIP Premium Subscribers)

Also in this issue:

  • DECISION IS DE FACTO PERMISSION TO BUY 2009 GRAPES
  • 40 GROWER CLAIMS FROM 2007 AND 2008 CRUSH – ONE IS OWED $524k+
  • GROWER LIST
  • HEARING PART OF DUE PROCESS
  • KEY PLAYERS HAVE NO COMMENT

PREVIOUS COSENTINO COVERAGE ON WINE INDUSTRY INSIGHT


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