Senator Cantwell’s Statement on Lewis-Clark Valley AVA Designation

WASHINGTON, D.C.  – Today, U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell released the following statement after the U.S. Department of Treasury approved Lewis-Clark Valley’s designation as an American Viticulture Area (AVA). The AVA designation recognizes a wine-grape growing and production area that is distinguished for its unique geography and climate. 

“Eastern Washington wine is recognized as some of the best in the world.  This announcement marks a clear win for the local economies of the Lewis-Clark Valley and indicates a strong future for our winemakers and grape growers in the region.  We know that unique geographic and environmental factors make the Lewis-Clark Valley a top wine-growing region and now the Federal Government does as well.”

Earlier this month, Senator Cantwell, along with Senator Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), urged the Treasury Department’s Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) to move quickly in approving the Lewis-Clark Valley’s designation as an AVA.

Since 2009, the Lewis-Clark Valley Wine Alliance, a group of wine grape growers, wineries, and economic development and tourism organizations, has worked with community stakeholders and the TTB to secure an AVA designation for the area. 

The Lewis-Clark AVA would consist of parts of Asotin, Garfield and Whitman County in Washington, as well as Nez Perce, Clearwater, Latah and Lewis County in Idaho. Washington’s wine economy supports 25,000 jobs.