Governor Kemp signs SB 358 making the muscadine the official grape of Georgia.
Every August, you can visit South Georgia and there will be a scent in the air that most familiarize with their southern childhood. It’s the smell of ripe muscadines growing in their native environment. You may find it surprising to know that Georgia leads the nation in its production of muscadines, and the University of Georgia also has the oldest muscadine breeding program in the United States.
Recognizing his district and the State of Georgia as a leader in muscadine production, State Senator Tyler Harper introduced SB 358 on February 3, 2020. The bill was signed by Governor Kemp on August 5, 2020 making the muscadine the official grape of Georgia effective January 1, 2021.
Muscadines are harvested in Georgia for wine and fresh fruit. Muscadine ingredients may be used as the primary ingredients in products such as functional foods, dietary supplements, super fruit products, ready to drink beverages, beverage powders, tablets and capsules, cosmetic and skin care products, natural antioxidant for stabilizing foods, natural food coloring, and jams and jellies.
Now is a great time to head to South Georgia and enjoy fresh Georgia muscadines. Mark your calendar to attend the Georgia Muscadine Festival on September 4, 5 & 7th at Paulk Vineyards in Wray, GA. Admission to the festival is free. You can purchase fresh fruit, grape stomp, wine tastings, artisan market, food vendors, live music and more. For more information on the event, visit www.georgiamuscadinefestival.com.
If you are interested in learning more about muscadines, save the date for the Georgia Muscadine Conference to be held virtually on November 2 and hosted by the Georgia Wine Producers and the Georgia Muscadine Association, for more information on this event, visit www.georgiawineproducers.org.