When the destructive bushfires raged through South Australia in late 2019 into early 2020, we did not even contemplate that we would soon be facing a global health pandemic. Front of mind was protecting South Australian lives, livelihoods, pets and possessions.
When the dust settled, there was survival to be thankful for and loss to reflect on. For the wine industry, some vineyards were lost to fire, while others had grapes tainted by smoke, leading to significant losses for producers.
Due to world-leading research from Business SA member the University of Adelaide, all has not been lost for smoke-affected grapes. Researchers have transformed smoke-tainted wine into a new player in the ever-fashionable gin market. This research offers grape and wine producers a unique opportunity to save crops from waste and recover financial losses. It is this tenacity to find solutions that businesses can benefit from through university collaboration.
Attending the launch, Business SA Policy Advisor Jordan Smith said that this research shows the pivotal role universities can play in reducing costs and increasing productivity for business.
“For technical issues, businesses should definitely consider bringing a university on board for out-of-the-box or ingenious solutions.”
Business SA Director of Policy and Advocacy Kendall Crowe was fascinated to learn the innovative ways the wine sector and university are working together to find ways to work best with South Australia’s climate and thrive in changing conditions.
University of Adelaide Professor of Oenology Kerry Wilkinson says that this research demonstrates the potential for the industry to transform smoke-tainted wine into spirits, such as gin.
“Australian grape growers and winemakers face drought and heatwaves alongside the impacts of bushfires.”
“When researchers collaborate on industry challenges, incredible commercial solutions can be found.”
Original post on Business SA Website here.