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Published:  23 July, 2008

A Californian pension fund has invested $100 million of its members' money in a wine growing joint-venture in the US. The California Public Employees Retirement System (CalPERS) has teamed up with Premier Pacific Vineyards (PPV) - a Napa-based developer of vineyard land - for the venture, which aims to develop vineyard land for the US fine wine industry'. In total, 80% of the fund's cash will be invested in Californian vineyards over the next two years', with the remaining 20% going into the acquisition of sites in Washington and Oregon. Eight sites are expected to be cleared, planted and ready to supply wine producers within five to seven years'. The principals of PPV are experienced developers of vineyards, with a successful history of selling to notable wine producers,' said Michael McCook, CalPERS' senior investment officer. We are excited about PPV's ability to establish a successful venture to develop and then sell producing vineyards in the high-end wine market.'