Nurture the Land and Return What You Take

This philosophy brings with it a dedication to delivering wines that speak to their natural origins. The wines cultivated at The Hess Collection follow the dictates of the Napa Green certified land and winery programs, as well as the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance “Code of Sustainable Winegrowing”, both third-party certification programs with significant oversight.

Taking Action

The wine industry has taken a leadership role in green business practices. Wine industry leaders are working hand-in-hand with industrial, environmental and government agencies and community partners, to develop standards of “green” practices in winemaking. The Hess Collection has been at the forefront of the green movement for many years (see timeline below). Most importantly, the winery actively participates in a number of important programs that are shaping the future for the wine industry.

Hess Collection Sustainable Timeline


The Hess Collection’s American Canyon facility and vineyards are for the first time certified sustainable, while the Mount Veeder winery & vineyards are re-certified sustainable by the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance.


The Hess Collection is among the first 17 wineries to be certified through the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance (CSWA) by third party verification. Established by the Wine Institute and California Association of Winegrape Growers, CSWA requires adherence to a “process of continuous improvement” in the adaptation and implementation of sustainable winegrowing practices. The goals of the new certification program are to enhance transparency, advance the entire California wine industry towards best practices in environmental stewardship, conservation of natural resources and socially equitable business practices.


The Hess Collection is among the first 10 wineries to receive certification for the Napa Green Winery program. In the spring, the winery purchases 24 goats—all of whom turned out to be pregnant—for ground clearing and underbrush management in our Mount Veeder estate vineyards. Now, the more than 150 goats are released into the vineyards prior to bud break to help with weed control, minimizing the use of tractors and tilling.


The Hess Collection sits on Napa Valley Vintners Association steering committee to establish the “Napa Green” program to define best practices for Napa Valley winery facilities.With a seat on the Wine Institute board of directors, Hess actively participated in the organization’s goal of establishing a standardized and certifiable definition of sustainable wine-growing practices.


The Hess Collection helps develop the Wine Institute’s “Code of Sustainable Winegrowing Practices,” a landmark code of best management practices promoting social responsibility and environmental stewardship.


The Hess Collection hosted the first Natural Farming Symposium for vineyards in the United States. Over 100 vintners attended from Napa and Sonoma Valleys and the panel included speakers from Europe, Australia and the United States.


Donald Hess acquires his first land on Mount Veeder, and completed purchase of 900 acres in 1982. Over 600 acres are set aside as undeveloped land to support wildlife corridors, fish friendly farming practices and biodiversity. The vineyards and winegrowing of The Hess Collection Winery utilize sustainable practices as defined by the Wine Institute.