Texas and Texoma Wine--Billion Dollar Industry - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

Texas and Texoma Wine--Billion Dollar Industry

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WHITEWRIGHT, TX -- It's generating billions of dollars and it's right here in Texoma. The Texas wine industry is having a huge impact on the state and it is only expected to grow.

Texas wine is generating more than 1.3 billion dollars a year in Texas and employing thousands.

It's the pop of a cork that is now reverberating a sound worth billions. Most people think of California when they think of grapes on the vine, but it turns out the Texas wine industry has been around longer than the wine industry in California. It may surprise you Texas ranks 5th in the nation for wine production and its grown more than 450% since the 1980s.

Bob White, owner of Texoma Winery remarks on the industry's strong points. "The industry is really growing in the hospitality sector, restaurants and in the hotel industry." He adds wineries are good for the local economy. "Wineries help pull people from big cities like Dallas for an afternoon to rural areas. That means they are spending their money locally on lunches wine, etc".

The industry, is bringing in a lot of visitors. In past years, Texas wine has brought around 1 million tourists to the State. Now add, taxes, production and employment and you can see Texoma wineries have a huge economic impact on our area and around the State.

"Turns out grapes maybe the single biggest agricultural crop in terms of value", says Paul Wagner, a Napa Valley instructor.

But the popularity of the wine industry is about more than just a drink. "It's growing because of the natural mystic of the wine industry itself", says Bob White and Paul Wagner adds, "It's an expression of culture".

Wine tasting is more than sipping the glass, it's an art. "You take your time, you look at the overall body and color of the wine.  They you swirl it, you look at the legs (how long it stays on the sides of the glass) that can tell you about the quality and alcohol level.  Then you eventually taste the wine," says White.

It's an interesting process that is catching Americans attention making Texas wine a huge industry. There are a number of local wineries in Texoma, below are links to wineries in Texas and Oklahoma.

Http://www.gotexanwine.org/findwinesandwineries/

http://www.nuyakacreek.com/oklahoma_wineries.htm

Christina Lusby, Reports.