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Growing Napa: Grapes & Cannabis

Famous for its grape game, Napa Valley is home to more than 400 wineries. Wine lovers across the country travel to Napa for activities beyond scenic wine tours, such as destination weddings, golf, art shows, culinary tastings, and now, cannabis.

Delicious Duo

Grown from Mother Nature, wine and cannabis may look different, but their similarities outweigh their differences. Both delicious and feel-good blends, wine and cannabis are working in harmony to bring a new source of joy to Napa Valley and vintner Stephanie Honig is leading the charge.

Vintner & Pioneer

Director of communications for Honig Vineyard & Winery, Stephanie Honig lives and breathes wine. Stephanie and her husband, Michael Honig, and their family live on the Honig property in the heart of Napa Valley. Until 2018, Stephanie did not give cannabis much thought. And then her family friend asked Stephanie to cofound the Napa Valley Cannabis Association (NVCA). From there, Stephanie has been a cannabis pioneer in the wine industry.

Growing Together

In an opinion piece for the SevenFifty Daily, Stephanie noted her reasoning for merging these two worlds, “Some may think my current role as NVCA’s president puts me at odds with local vintners, including my husband... However, I strongly believe that developing a thriving cannabis industry is in the best interests of Napa County—including the interests of its winemakers.”

There are several reasons why cultivating cannabis in Napa is beneficial for winemakers and their visitors. For one, cannabis is a high-value crop. Without cannabis, the agriculture in Napa is almost entirely grapes. Cannabis is a beneficial add to the agriculture, fostering biodiversity and an eco-friendlier environment.

On the business and culture side of things, adding cannabis to the Napa ecosystem could also draw a younger crowd, increase jobs, and increase tax dollars for the community. These benefits are helping more vintners hop on board too, including Mondavi. Mondavi told Stephanie, “I can’t fathom cannabis cannibalizing or competing with the Napa Valley wine experience. Napa Valley is a mecca for world-class luxury wines and dining, and cannabis is certain to complement that.”

What’s Next?

Though Stephanie and other vintners like Mondavi were proudly pro cultivating cannabis, Stephanie’s work wasn’t so easy. Stephanie and her team at NVCA hosted a number of community events to help educate the community and destigmatize cannabis. Because of her work, we’re seeing more regions embrace cannabis (I.e., cannabis farm tours and CBD spa treatments) and its role in the wine and dining space.


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