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Wine and Grape Appreciation Month

September is Wine and Grape Appreciation Month in the Tarheel State. North Carolina is home to 350 vineyards and more than 70 wineries. Duplin Winery started in 1972. A teacher looking to make some extra money wanted to grow the most profitable crop that wasn't tobacco. The facility can now hold a million gallons of wine, but the cork didn't really pop until the mid 90's. Duplin Winery president, David Fussell Jr., said “Back in 1996 they came out with the best news any wine maker could ever here. Drink a glass of red wine it's good for you. And we were all tickled to death and fortunately for us, we've been able to sell every single bottle of wine that we've made since 1996.” Fussell said the Muscadine grapes have more of the heart healthy compound than other types of grapes. That compound also helps the grapes survive a fungal bacteria during the summer heat. The North Carolina Department of Commerce said wine and grape industries account for nearly 6,000 jobs. September is when vineyards in North Carolina harvest their grapes, making it the perfect month for appreciating the final product.

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