Archive for events

Check out the Vineyard of the Future!

Look into the future!!

The Vineyard of the Future is an exciting project across a number of wine-producing countries with the aim of creating a “fully instrumented vineyard using wireless connectivity and automated data gathering and analysis”.

It will also be a test-bed for new technology and a trial site to investigate potential effects of climate change on viticulture in Australia, Chile, the USA and Spain. Universities from each country are collaborating for this unique project.

In Australia the participants are the University of Adelaide, lead by Wine2030’s Professor Steve Tyerman and Dr Roberta De Bei; and the University of Melbourne, with International VoF Leader Dr Sigfredo Fuentes – based at the University of Adelaide.

Check it out here!

Check out Vineyard of the Future activities and news on the VoF blog page.


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Wine and Astonishment – the new thinkpiece by Andrew Jefford

Let’s make wine strange again! So says Andrew Jefford in this original and well written paper, published as a Working Paper in the University of Adelaide’s Wine Economics Research Centre.

Wine market expert Andrew Jefford gave a rousing and original speech to the Wine Communicators of Australia at the National Wine Centre on 29 May 2012. This article entitled Wine and Astonishment is an edited version of that speech.

Jefford wants us to rethink our attitudes to wine. In recent years he says, wine has become so familiar that we now take it for granted. “There are dangers in that familiarity… The aim is to make wine strange for us again.” Wine he says – “there is no thing like it”.

The worst thing in his eyes is “the failure to be astonished by wine: a wine-worldliness, if you like. This knowingness, this taking –for-granted of the landscape of the wine world, does wine a disservice.”

Jefford delves into the philosophical significance of astonishment, and also examines the ‘being of wine’, as opposed to the existence. Are we so distracted by the ubiquitous existence of wine now, as we are surrounded by it, that we have forgotten the essence of being…

It’s a cracking read, with some delicious philosophical mindbenders, but as Jefford puts it, it is in layman’s terms, clearly explained and leads you through a journey of reflection on the value of wine in our lives.

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University of Adelaide launches Wine Alumni Network

The University of Adelaide’s School of Agriculture, Food and Wine officially launches the new Wine Alumni Network at the city’s historic Urrbrae House on the university’s Waite Campus on Thursday 2 August 2012. The Network Patron is Dr Patrick Iland OAM.

The network has been developed with the specific needs of the wine industry in mind, assisting alumni to continue their connection with each other and with the University of Adelaide community.

For more information see the full media release.

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Prof. Anderson looks at Georgia as an emerging wine-exporting country

On 24 June 2012 Professor Kym Anderson spoke at the AAWEICABR workshop in Avellino, Italy, entitled Technology and Innovation in the Wine Industry.

He talked about the Georgian wine industry in a presentation entitled: ‘Is Georgia the next ‘new’ wine-exporting country? The roles of traditional vs. new technologies and trade alliances’. To see his presentation go to the WERC Events page.

Georgia has been producing and exporting wine for thousands of years, and until the trade embargo in 2006, the lion’s share went to Russia. Advantages include low labour and viticultural land costs by Western standards and recognition of Georgian GIs by the EU. The Ukraine is currently the largest importer of Georgian wine but there is potential in the rest of the CIS countries and Europe as well as Asia.

Professor Anderson’s presentation offers great insights into Georgia’s place in the global history of wine markets and its potential. Yet another wine-producing country to watch with interest!

Professor Anderson is Executive Director of the Wine Economics Research Centre of the University of Adelaide.

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Read about current Wine2030 research projects

The Wine2030 research network provides funding for a wide range of wine-related research. This article summarises two very different and ground-breaking research projects.

Addressing wine industry challenges: Fine-tuning irrigation scheduling using Near Infrared (NIR) spectroscopy

Dr Roberta De Bei and Dr Sigfredo Fuentes

Water scarcity will continue to be an issue in Australia in a future climate change scenario. Improving water use efficiency by grapevines by developing new irrigation techniques and by improving irrigation scheduling will help the wine industry to face the issues of water shortage and climactic anomalies (heat waves). Near infrared (NIR) spectroscopy has proven to be effective in obtaining stem water potential (Ψs) measurements for grapevines, which is regarded as one of the most integrative measures of the whole-plant water status according to soil-plant-atmosphere conditions (De Bei et al. 2011). In this project Dr De Bei and Dr Fuentes will implement this technique to generate and make available site-specific calibration curves of NIR / Ψs to be used by the wine industry for precision irrigation. Furthermore, critical thresholds to fine tune irrigation scheduling will be obtained relying on vine physiology (water potential and NIR) rather than indirect methods, such as soil moisture or weather data.

Testing of this new technique will be implemented as part of the Vineyard of the Future initiative from the University of Adelaide, which will be a fully integrated monitored and logged vineyard dedicated as a test-bed for innovations in climate change adaptation.

Developing a novel method for RNA and DNA extraction from wines and its application to the wine industry

Dr Nuredin Habili

Reports on the detection of DNA in bottled wines have been emerging since 2000. However, those on the detection of virus RNA [RNA is the same as DNA with an extra oxygen in its structure and is mostly present in viruses (makes up the genes of viruses)] and viroids in wines were lacking. Our preliminary research showed that DNA molecules of up to 5000 bp could be detected in wine nucleic acid extracts using an extraction method developed in our laboratory. A segment of the coat protein gene of a grapevine virus and partial sequences of two viroids were also detected. One of these viroids is quarantined in Australia and it may cause biosecurity concern by certain countries which import our wines. This is only when/if the viroid RNA in the wine proves to be infectious.

DNA extracted from wines has the potential to address the following:

  • Variety identification, either as single or as blend using DNA fingerprinting.
  • Detection of micro organisms associated with spoilage. This includes detecting diffuse powdery mildew, which adversely affects wine quality.
  • Detecting GMO wines/yeasts.

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Wine2030 supports the debate @ the Waite

The University of Adelaide’s Waite Research Institute is hosting the next round in its Debate @ the Waite series on 15 March 2012 on the following hypothesis: ‘The future of the Australian wine industry will be based on technology, not tradition’.

What do you think about the future of Australia’s wine industry? Undoubtedly a major success story to date but facing challenges as are all of the world’s wine producers. We are at a fork in the road – which direction do we take? What are we doing right? What are we doing wrong? What should we do to change for the better? This is a fun and engaging approach to addressing some serious issues which we hope will give you food for thought!

Six experts in all areas of the wine industry will debate its future, how to overcome challenges facing the industry, and the best approaches to prosper in the long term.

Hurry! Seats are filling quickly!!!

Follow on Twitter at @WaiteResearch or #agchatoz

The team speakers for the affirmative are:

Professor Steve Tyerman, School of Agriculture, Food & Wine and Wine2030 committee, The University of Adelaide

Dr Dan Johnson, Managing Director, Australian Wine Research Institute (AWRI)

Professor Vlad Jiranek, School of Agriculture, Food & Wine and Wine2030 committee, The University of Adelaide

The team speakers for the negative are:

Mr Brian Croser, Tapanappa winemaker and Wine2030 committee

Professor Barbara Santich, School of History & Politics and Wine2030, The University of Adelaide

Dr Sue Bastian, School of Agriculture, Food and Wine and Wine2030, The University of Adelaide

The University of Adelaide’s Wine2030 is pleased to support this event and five of the six speakers are members of Wine2030! A short bio on each is given below.

With this diverse, informed and revered line-up there will be some informative and lively debate. So come along and get involved!

When? 6:00pm – 8:30pm, Thursday 15 March 2012

Where? Lirra Lirra Cafe, Waite Road, Waite Campus, Urrbrae

Admission is free! Prior registration is essential as seats are limited. Go to

Free wine tasting and finger food provided

Bitesize bios of the speakers:

  • Professor Steve Tyerman has expertise in nutrition, salinity and water use in plants and has been teaching viticulture at the University of Adelaide for many years. His current research is driven by the implications of climate change for viticulture.
  • Dr Dan Johnson – the AWRI is a research, development and extension organisation owned and governed by the Australian wine industry. As well being the MD of the AWRI, Dan is Chairman of the Australian Wine Industry Technical Conference.
  • Professor Vlad Jiranek is a microbiologist with experience in the US and NZ. He researches the characterisation of microorganisms used in fermentation – and the findings have led to changes in selection, optimisation and management of wine yeasts by the wine industry. Recently he has been looking at the genetic basis for the preferred attributes of wine yeast.
  • Brian Croser is one of Australia’s most revered winemakers and leading exponents of terroir-driven wines. He was the founder and chief winemaker for Petaluma for 27 years, and later established Tapanappa Wines as well as a vineyard in Oregon, USA. He is an Officer of the Order of Australia for his contribution to research, education and services to the Australian wine industry.
  • Professor Barbara Santich is an internationally acknowledged expert on food history. She teaches courses on food culture and history at the University of Adelaide. She has published several awarded texts; the forthcoming book is Bold Palates: Australia’s Gastronomic Heritage.
  • Dr Sue Bastian is a researcher and senior lecturer in oenology and sensory studies. She also conducts industry sensory training, is an associate judge for several Australian wine shows, and has a small winemaking business in the Adelaide Hills.

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We want your views on new technologies in wine!

Understanding public and industry views on the use of new technologies in wine

Do you consume wine?

Are you willing to participate in our project by completing an anonymous survey?

This project at the University of Adelaide aims to understand the views of the general public and those working within the wine industry on the use of new technologies in winemaking in Australia. It is suggested that increased global competition, shifts in consumer demands and expectations especially regarding wine quality, and concerns about the need for more environmentally-friendly production practices are driving some in the industry to support consideration of these technologies. The research phase of this project will be conducted during the second half of 2011 and is supported by Wine2030.

Enter our survey here: Survey on public views of the use of new technologies in wine.

Would you be willing to participate in a focus group in Adelaide on public views of the use of technology in the wine industry?

Yes? Focus group: Answer a few short questions and register your interest here.

This project is lead by Associate Professor Rachel Ankeny.

More information on current projects within the Food Ethics group may be found here.

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