The travel grant provided University of Adelaide PhD student, Lieke van der Hulst, the opportunity to attend and present at (i) the 11th Wartburg Symposium on Flavor Chemistry and Biology in Eisenach, Germany (June 21–24) and (ii) the Macrowine 2016 Symposium in Nyon, Switzerland (June 27–30). The focus of these symposia are flavour chemistry and biology, and grape and wine macromolecules and secondary metabolites, respectively.
Lieke van der Hulst presented research findings from her PhD at each conference, outlining the impact of smoke exposure by grapevines on the chemical composition of fruit, in particular grapes of different cultivars. Feedback from conference delegates was favourable and, together with networking opportunities and the knowledge gained from other presentation, which spanned flavour chemistry, analytical chemistry, biochemistry, sensory science and wine science fields, was immensely valuable.
This Bursary enabled me to participate in the Annual Conference of the American Association of Wine Economists (AAWE), held at the University of Bordeaux during 21-25 June 2016, and to co-convene and present at a pre-conference workshop at the same venue (20-21 June), on Wine’s Evolving Globalization. Several outputs are already available, others will become available by end-February 2017, and one other (a revision, update, and major backdate of our eBook Global Wine Markets: A Statistical Compendium) could be a further output should Wine Australia wish to fund its compilation during fiscal year 2016-17.
The principal activity of the travel was to attend the international congress Macrowine 2016. The opportunity to have an oral presentation gave us the chance to present at the scientific community part of our results related with the project NWG 1401, funded by AGWA. The exposure of the data opened a discussion with experts of the field of wine macromolecules. The discussion focussed mainly on the option for further experimentation. Moreover, the attendance to the Macrowine 2016 gave the opportunity to get in contact with potential collaborators all over the world. Several presented interest on the work that was presented at the congress and for future collaborations. Finally, the participation at the Macrowine 2016 was a good opportunity to keep up to date with the lastest discoveries in the field of wine macromolecules.
The principal aim of this travel was to attend the 10thGPB and present a poster entitled “Does vine age influence vine performance and grape quality?” in the poster session Topic 2: Yield, berry ripening, grape and wine quality.
Further to the above aim while travelling to Europe the opportunity was taken to broaden my knowledge and understanding of viticulture practices and production systems in different environments via a self-funded brief study tour including:
Technical visits in Italy in the Langhe region of Piemonte, specifically in and around the world famous areas of Barolo and Barbaresco. Meeting with scientists, researchers and wine producers.
Technical visits to the Emporda region in North East Spain to observe vineyard practices and production in a hot dry climate, especially to observe ‘old’ vines over 100 years in age.
The activity of yeasts in wine fermentations directly contributes to wine quality, but the source and movement of these yeasts in vineyard and winery environments has not been resolved. This study investigates the yeast species associated with a insect vector to help understand yeast dispersal and persistence. Drosophila are commonly found in vineyards and Drosophila and yeasts have a known mutualistic relationship in other ecosystems. Drosophilids were collected from vineyards, marc piles and wineries during the grape harvest. Captured flies were identified morphologically to and their associated yeasts were identified. Of the 296 Drosophila flies captured in this study the species identified were Drosophila melanogaster, Drosophila simulans, Drosophila hydei, and Scaptodrosophila lativittata. These flies were associated with the yeasts Metschnikowia pulcherrima, Hanseniaspora uvarum, Torulaspora delbrueckii and Hanseniaspora valbyensis. The diversity of yeasts and Drosophila species differed between collection locations (vineyard and marc; R=0.588 for Drosophila and R= 0.644 for yeasts). Surprisingly, the primary wine fermentation yeast, Saccharomyces cerevisiae was not isolated in this study. Drosophila flies are preferentially associated with different species of yeasts in the vineyard and winery environment and this association may help movement and dispersal of yeast species in the vineyard and winery ecosystem.
This travel grant assisted in funding Dr Leigh Schmidtke to travel to attend two international conferences and visit collaborators in Paris and Italy. The X International Symposium on Grapevine Physiology and Biotechnology was held at Palazzo della Gran Guardia Verona from June 13th to 18th 2016. This symposium focussed on: Plant and Fruit Development; Yield, Berry Ripening, Grape and Wine Quality; Environmental Interactions and Climate Change; Soil, Water Relations and Mineral Nutrition; Grapevine-Pathogen Interactions and Disease Resistance; Advances in phenotypes, -omic Technologies and Postharvest Physiology. Recent Wine Australia funded research outputs were presented in the form of an oral presentation titled ‘Grapes to Wine: The Nexus Between berry Ripening, Composition and Wine Style’, and a poster titled ‘Study of Berry heterogeneity, Spatial Distribution and Ripening Within a Bunch: Potential Role of the Seed Content’. The XVI Chemometrics in Analytical Chemistry (CAC) conference was held in Barcelona from June 6th to 10th. This international conference is the leading scientific symposium for chemometrics and focused on: Theory and Method Development; Large Data; Multiblock data Analysis; Design of Experiments; Statistical process Control; Hyperspectral image Analysis; Food and Sensory Analysis and Data Fusion. Research outputs were presented in poster format titled ‘Grapes to Wine: Finding Contributors to Wine Style with Multiblock Analysis’.
Both conferences were well attended with approximately 250 delegates at each venue that allowed excellent opportunities for network with existing and potential collaborators. The travel grant also enabled an opportunity to liaise with Professor Douglas Rutledge from AgroParisTech on applications of several novel chemometric data methods for grape and wine composition and discussions with Fulvio Mattivi and Urska Vrhovsek from Fondazione Edmund Mach, San Michele, Italy on continuing collaborations.
The Adelaide Hills Wine Region is home to 52 cellar doors, most of which are owned and operated by family companies offering a range of experiences for visitors. Developing and providing resources that will enhance the visitor experience and promote the region to encourage greater visitation and maximise business opportunities is a priority.
The IWINETC is a leading international conference that provides a forum for information sharing, networking, product selling and direct interaction with the host region's wine tourism offerings. As a speaker, I can provide an international audience (comprising media, travel agents and industry) with information about South Australia's wine tourism offering, while concurrently learning about other region's wine tourism development to enhance by own knowledge.
Viticultural production systems in California and Australia share many similarities. Sustainability in its broadest sense is a core focus in both production environments, and lessons learned are regularly traded between the countries. Dr Glenn McGourty, an extension specialist with the University of California (Davis), has broad-ranging viticultural expertise as a winegrape grower and researcher. His recent visit to Australia, funded by industry through Wine Australia, acted as a catalyst for several regional groups to access his expertise in conjunction with workshops and field days. Over his three week visit, about 280 industry personnel and students heard Glenn speak on topics such as Organic and Regenerative Viticulture and Frost Mitigation. Feedback from attendees was very positive, and the potential for changes in management practice, as a result of the forums is strong. Strong bilateral research links have also been forged, with the intention of ongoing information exchange between investigators undertaking similar programs in the two countries.
Simonit and Sirch is an Italian company that has developed a method of soft pruning, based on the methods developed in France by Guyot and Poussard. They focus on training vineyard staff to prune according to their method. Their work has been widely recognised and they are now working with major vineyards across Italy and France, and broadly across Europe, South Africa and in the U.S.A.
The project was designed as a pilot to introduce soft pruning techniques to selected vineyards and to create broader awareness across four of Australia’s cool climate wine producing regions.
Mrs Barbara Hall, Senior Research Scientist, Plant Health and Biosecurity, SARDI, attended the 18th Reinhardsbrunn Symposium on Modern Fungicides and Antifungal Compounds, held in Friedrichroda, Germany, April 24-28, 2016. This symposium, held every three years, draws together fungicide scientists from academia, research institutes and industry. It is the main forum for scientists to present, listen to and discuss the latest research and information on all aspects of fungicide use, from development to efficacy and resistance management. This was preceded by a visit to the global headquarters of the Bayer Crop Protection division at Monheim, where discussions were held on new compounds and resistance testing in viticulture.