Court of Master Sommeliers
The Court of Master Sommeliers was established to encourage improved standards of beverage knowledge and service in hotels and restaurants. Education was then, and remains today, the Court's charter. The first successful Master Sommelier examination was held in the United Kingdom in 1969. By April 1977, the Court of Master Sommeliers was established as the premier international examining body. It took the Court ten years to perfect its qualifications, which are recognized internationally.

Institute of Master of Wine
The Institute of Masters of Wine (IMW) exists to promote the highest level of educational achievement for the wine industry, culminating in the internationally recognized qualification of Master of Wine (MW). As a corporate entity it organizes all aspects of the Master of Wine examination and education program, runs tastings and other events program, provides membership services to the 264 MWs world-wide, and information and access to specialist advice for the wine industry in general.

The Wine & Spirit Education Trust
The Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) was founded in 1969 to provide high quality education and training in wines and spirits. Since then, WSET has grown into the foremost international body in the field of wines and spirits education, with a suite of sought-after qualifications.
Outstanding maps of wine regions are hard to find, but the best are available from These are the maps we use at our office and for our tasting events. Incredible detail and rich color make these better than all maps we've found.

Demeter Association USA
Demeter is a leader of Biodynamic® certification and awareness, investing in and activating self-sustaining resources that make an impact on farm communities and the consumers they serve.

ECOCERT is a control and certification organisation, whose activities are governed accordingly by the public authorities and legislation. ECOCERT is accredited for structure and procedures by COFRAC (French committee for accreditation), in accordance with guide standard ISO 65 (EN 45011), which requires independence, competence and impartiality.

SIVCBD (Biodyvin)
The Syndicat international des vignerons en culture bio-dynamique is an association of French biodynamic winemakers, most of whom are not Demeter members. Wines carrying their Biodyvin logo must be made from biodynamic grapes and are certified by ECOCERT. The mark is also intended as a guarantee of quality: all Biodyvin wines are tasted and approved by SIVCBD. Biodyvin wines will have to conform to a set of rules on vinification once these have been finalized. They are expected to be more lenient than those for vin Demeter.

LIVE is a non profit organization providing education and certification for vineyards using international standards of sustainable viticulture practices in wine grape production. These practices are based on a score system consisting of basic required practices, prohibited practices and numerous ecological options.

Slow Food
Slow Food is a non-profit, eco-gastronomic member-supported organization that was founded in 1989 to counteract fast food and fast life, the disappearance of local food traditions and people's dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from, how it tastes and how our food choices affect the rest of the world.

Salmon Safe
Salmon Safe certification is an Oregon-bases initiative to help keep dangerous chemicals out of the water supply for migrating and spawning fish.

Biodynamic Calendar
In a more extreme interpretation of the Lunar effects it is thought that the 'life-forces' which give the Earth its vitality are driven by a number of sources. As the Moon orbits it collects energy from the sun, the planets and the stars which it transmits to the Earth. The Biodynamic Calendar sets out how to use these rhythms so that cultivating crops can be timed to best effect. There are 12 constellations and they influence the four elements on different days - three constellations per element which correspond to the four phases of the Moon and affect different parts of a plant.

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