WAM, a 501(c)6 trade association, began in 2020 to help steer the future of the wine industry in Montana. It is made up entirely of Montana wineries which produce (crush, ferment, age) and bottle wine in Montana, in order to support those wineries and celebrate wines grown and produced in Montana.
Montana vineyards and orchards can produce grapes and other fruit that can stand the rugged cold winters and moderate summers we have in Montana. The grapes are mostly hybrids from the University of Minnesota, and hybrids from private breeders like Tom Plocher in Minnesota and the late, great Elmer Swenson of Wisconsin. We're also hopeful about some new super hardy cultivars being developed by North Dakota State University.
Montana wineries make sweet and dry wines from grapes, and from a wide assortment of other fruits like apples, pears, plums, cherries, currants, chokecherries, rhubarb, haskaps (edible honeysuckle) and more. WAM strongly encourages its member wineries to take advantage of Montana grown fruit to increase the agricultural base of small-fruit and orchard fruit growing in Montana and to enlarge our wine industry here.