Updated: Sep 21, 2022
Written by John Bradley
Droughts and floods and climate change are on our minds and in the news this summer. This was evident on our tour of the Klocke Estate with co-owners John Frishkopf and Brett Mattingly, whose vineyards and orchards are a clinic in agricultural water management. Before any planting took place, all the fields, both hillsides and flatland, were studied and engineered to capture whatever water was available. They also described the elaborate system of channels to direct runoff, tiles to capture seeped water and the three storage ponds (top, bottom and mid-hill) to store water for irrigation.
Before we started walking the grounds, John and Brett talked through the climate risk for their significant agricultural investment. They discussed the planning and use of advanced farming technologies to manage these risks and bring about the best results from their cultivation. It was fascinating how the co-owners had researched and planned each step of land management, plant selection, cultivation, harvesting and processing the fruit, fermentation, distillation and aging of the product. Applying broad expertise in regenerative farming and attention to every detail, they are confident that they can produce a competitive product, and improve their natural resources.
I am not trained in agriculture but I do understand there are economic and environmental impacts of various farming practices. John and Brett’s discussion was a strong argument that their regenerative farming practices can have a positive environmental and economic impact in our community. We welcome this ecologically and hopefully economically sustainable model to the Hudson Valley's evolving green economy.
For more background on the Klocke Estate Distillery, see their website - https://www.klocke-estate.com/