Credit: Kate Karson | Mustang News

About fifteen years in the making, Cal Poly’s Wine and Viticulture Center is expected to be completed in the fall of 2021, according to wine and viticulture professor Federico Casassa.

Casassa said that students will be able to produce commercial and research wines at the new center by September, just in time for the fall harvest.

The $22 million center is entirely privately funded and designed to be industry-standard.

According to the center’s official website, the winery will be 15,000 square feet. The current center that students are using is less than 500 square feet, according to Casassa.

The center will be equipped to produce 5,000 cases of wine per harvest, but according to Casassa, students will more likely produce about 2,000 cases.

Cal Poly currently has the largest wine and viticulture program in the country. Casassa said that the current center that Cal Poly has is not up to the level of the students in the major.

“We have very limited facilities, in terms of space and the fact that they are outdated,” Casassa said. “The time is right just for us to upgrade and just to be more at the level of the students that we are trying to produce or to release.”

In addition to the center, funds have also been raised for a social hall for gatherings and meetings.

College of Agriculture Director of Communications and Strategic Initiatives Haley Marconett wrote in an email that she is most excited about Swanson Center of Effort Conference Hall, which will enable people to have large gatherings with the campus and community. 

“Once COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, it will be great to gather together once again,” Marconett wrote.

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