OAKLAND, Calif. — The American Cider Association – formerly known as the United States Association of Cider Makers (USACM) – is excited to announce registration is now open for CiderCon 2020, taking place January 28-31 at Oakland Convention Center in sunny California! Home to more than 115 cider producers, the renowned Gravenstein apple, and orchardist legend Albert Etter, California’s cider community is ripe to play host to the growing U.S. cider industry.
Following the largest attendance on record for the annual multi-day conference in 2019, CiderCon® 2020 is expected to draw attendees from across the United States, Canada, Europe, Asia and South America to downtown Oakland. CiderCon® – the largest and most diverse gathering for cider in the US – provides industry professionals and cider enthusiasts alike a space to gather, share ideas, collaborate and learn, while sampling and celebrating ciders from around the world.
“Each time, this conference acts as a foundation for the coming year, providing cidermakers from across the country with the chance to meet their industry colleagues, exchange ideas, and learn about best practices, innovations and trends from some of the best in their field,” says Michelle McGrath, the executive director of the American Cider Association. “In addition, with this being our first time hosting CiderCon® in California, we’re excited to showcase and give our members access to this exciting cider region, as well as a little warm weather and sun!”
With four full days of programming, including a day of cidery tours throughout central California, highlights for CiderCon® 2020 include:
- Keynote speaker Jill Giacomini Basch, owner of Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese Company, on how she transformed the family dairy farm into a thriving value-added agricultural business. Sip cider and sample cheese during her address.
- Return of the popular Wednesday Orcharding Seminar, this year focusing on dry orcharding and other topics relevant to orcharding in the west, including carbon farming, regulated deficit irrigation, cover crops, and hardy apple heirloom varieties. This session includes a scion exchange.
- Tour, tours and more tours! Visit one of three great California cider regions: Parajo Valley/San Jose, Sonoma County or East Bay (with food pairings!). Or, take a special look inside the historic Filoli Gardens, and enjoy an in-depth panel discussion about the history and importance of apple production in California.
- Ireland as the featured country for 2020. Sample alongside and hear from some of Ireland’s top cider makers and learn about their unique challenges and opportunities.
- More than 110 trade show vendors (up from 100 in 2019) gathered with information on cidery equipment, point of sale, sales tools and more! Cider samples will be available throughout the trade show floor.
- An enhanced cider making track, with curated workshops coordinated in partnership with the Cider Institute of North America (CINA). These sessions cover a range of topics from fault evaluation and prevention to aging ciders.
- An exciting array of tasting seminars, covering everything from Pét-Nats to varietal specifics and terroir spotlights (this year featuring: Franklin County, Massachusetts, the home of one of the oldest cideries in the country
- A seminar with Dr. J Jackson-Beckham on why ‘being friendly isn’t enough’ during her important session Strategies and Tactics for Being Inclusive and Building Diversity
As an added bonus, the annual conference will be taking place during the first Bay Area Cider Week, happening January 26 – Feb 2. Join us in exploring the delicious universe of Central California cider by exploring local orchards, indulging in local cider pairing dinners, and sampling all the region has to offer with tap-takeovers and more. Visit bayareaciderweek.com for more information or to submit your event.
CiderCon® 2020 is open only to current Cider Association members, including cideries, cider enthusiasts, supporting businesses and more. Those interested can learn more about the Cider Association member benefits and sign up for membership on the American Cider Association website.
About the American Cider Association
The American Cider Association is an organization of cider and perry producers in the United States. It gathers and shares information about cider production, regulations and cider apply growing to help members improve their operations, raise awareness and advance cider in the market. The organization was founded in February 2013 at “CiderCon,” the third annual gathering of cider makers from across the United States. For more information, please visit www.ciderassociation.org.