Americans supporting Israel are urged to take a “Sip for Solidarity” by buying wine produced in the Jewish nation — with 10% of sales from the US’s main distributor going toward humanitarian relief efforts there.
The war broke out during the tail end of the harvest season there, and many operators and workers at the wineries are reservists called up by the Israel Defense Forces, said Joshua Greenstein, vice president of the Israel Wine Producers Association.
Greenstein, an Albany native who now resides in Westchester County, has been the major distributor of Israeli wine in the United States for 15 years.
“Winemaking has its own schedule, unlike other industries where you can pause production or run with limited staff,” Greenstein said. “Grapes grow and ripen when they do; the winemaking process is very hands-on. Without staff, many wineries face an impending crisis.
“Additionally, wine is usually something enjoyed when you go out to eat or to a party, and people in Israel aren’t feeling particularly celebratory these days. It’s catastrophic not just for this years’ sales but for the vintages harvesting now that won’t be ready for sale for years to come.”
Asked what people can do to help, Mr. Greenstein said, “Buy a bottle of Israeli wine.
“Not only will the purchase help the wineries, but we’re donating 10% of every case shipped from Nov. 1, 2023 to Dec. 31, 2023 to Israeli relief efforts. With the wine-consuming public’s support, these challenges are surmountable, and wineries will still craft wines that accurately and deliciously reflect the character of the vintage and of Israel, just as they always have,” he said.