Common Wealth Plans Waynesboro, Virginia, Custom Crush Winery
The company will create a new custom crush winery incubator and multi-producer tasting room at the historic Metalcrafters building. Over the next three years, Common Wealth Crush committed to add value to more than $1.1 million of Virginia-grown grapes while helping numerous new grape growers and winemakers refine their craft and eventually found their own wineries.
"We've called Virginia home for much of our lives and have spent the majority of our professional wine careers exploring all that our beautiful state has to offer viticulturally. As small producers ourselves, we founded Common Wealth Crush to help grow the next generation of fellow Virginia winemakers and brands, bringing these minds together under one roof where collaboration and creativity can flow,” said Common Wealth Crush Co-Founder Patt Eagan. “We are passionate believers in the continued winegrowing potential of Virginia, and by leveraging strength in numbers and community we strive to generate ‘common wealth’ for all those involved in our program, and by extension, Virginia Wine as a whole.”
The Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services worked with the city of Waynesboro and the Waynesboro Economic Development Authority to secure the project. The Governor's office approved a $25,000 grant from the Agriculture and Forestry Industries Development Fund, which the city of Waynesboro will match with local funds.
“During October, we celebrate Virginia Wine Month and the many positive impacts that our world-class vineyards and wineries bring to the Commonwealth. From the more than 10,000 jobs the industry has created to the more than 2.64 million tourists visiting our wineries each year, Virginia’s wine industry contributes so much to our economy and quality of life,” noted Governor Glenn Youngkin. “I am delighted to see continued investment in the industry and congratulate the owners of Common Wealth Crush for their commitment to bring even more great wines and wineries to the state.”
Traditionally, custom crush wineries process grapes from independently owned vineyards into wine that the grape owners then sell under their own label, according to state officials. Many newly established wineries also rely on custom crush operations for wine as they develop a brand and customer-base while waiting for their newly planted vineyards to mature.
“I am so pleased that the Commonwealth could partner with city of Waynesboro through the AFID program to support this important new addition to Virginia’s thriving wine industry,” added Secretary of Agriculture and Forestry Matthew Lohr. “In addition to creating new markets for Virginia’s grape producers, Common Wealth Crush will support new wineries and winemakers by reducing the high start-up costs that are a common barrier to market entry. I applaud the company’s owners for this unique business model and wish them much success.”
Common Wealth Crush has taken this traditional model a step further by incorporating elements of West Coast and European winery cooperatives with business-focused support offerings of start-up incubators.
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