Vineyard August 2022

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The word is Exton

INSIDE Budding fertility A changing, challenging landscape Stick to your guns informs Matthew Jukes


• Vineyard sales & acquisition • Planning applications • Business plans • Environmental schemes • Grants •

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For viticulturists in Great Britain

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23rd November 2022 Kent Event Centre, Detling, Maidstone, Kent ME14 3JF





The Vineyard & Winery Show is an unmissable event for anyone working in viticulture in the UK and abroad. The Vineyard & Winery Show will provide vineyard owners, winemakers and growers with a fantastic opportunity to keep up to date with the latest technology, meet with suppliers & allied trades that are supporting the industry as well as having the chance to network with key players in the UK wine marketplace.


You will be able to meet with industry experts, learn about new technology and view demonstrations of the latest machinery. Come and taste some of the UK’s best wines – up to 100 different UK producers are making their wines available for tasting on the day.


Giving you the chance to learn from industry leaders and hear about how they built their businesses. Expert speakers will cover viticulture, winemaking and marketing topics.

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PDO status granted for Sussex wine


London Wine Fair delivers


Are you carbon farming in your vineyard? VINEYARD Kelsey Media, The Granary, Downs Court Yalding Hill, Yalding, Maidstone, Kent, ME18 6AL 01959 541444 EDITORIAL Editor: Christian Davis DipWSET GRAPHIC DESIGN Jo Legg Flair Creative Design ADVERTISEMENT SALES Jamie McGrorty 01303 233883 PHOTOGRAPHER Martin Apps MANAGEMENT CHIEF EXECUTIVE: Steve Wright CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER: Phil Weeden MANAGING DIRECTOR: Kevin McCormick PUBLISHER: Jamie McGrorty RETAIL DIRECTOR: Steve Brown RENEWALS AND PROJECTS MANAGER: Andy Cotton SENIOR SUBSCRIPTION MARKETING MANAGER: Nick McIntosh SUBSCRIPTION MARKETING DIRECTOR: Gill Lambert SUBSCRIPTION MARKETING MANAGER: Kate Chamberlain SENIOR PRINT PRINT PRODUCTION MANAGER: Georgina Harris PRINT PRODUCTION CONTROLLER: Kelly Orriss DISTRIBUTION Distribution in Great Britain: Marketforce (UK) 3rd Floor, 161 Marsh Wall, London, E14 9AP Tel: 0330 390 6555 PRINTING Precision Colour Print Kelsey Media 2022 © all rights reserved. Kelsey Media is a trading name of Kelsey Publishing Ltd. Reproduction in whole or in part is forbidden except with permission in writing from the publishers. Note to contributors: articles submitted for consideration by the editor must be the original work of the author and not previously published. Where photographs are included, which are not the property of the contributor, permission to reproduce them must have been obtained from the owner of the copyright. The editor cannot guarantee a personal response to all letters and emails received. The views expressed in the magazine are not necessarily those of the Editor or the Publisher. Kelsey Publishing Ltd accepts no liability for products and services offered by third parties. Kelsey Media takes your personal data very seriously. For more information of our privacy policy, please visit Kelsey Media takes your personal data very seriously. For more information of our privacy policy, please visit . If at any point you have any queries regarding Kelsey’s data policy you can email our Data Protection Officer at

18 Study predicts growth in

UK wine production due to climate change

REGULARS 22 In conversation...

‘Legend’ is not a term that should be used lightly but Steve Daniel is a legend in terms of the UK licensed retail wine sector. This is the man, who through Oddbins, broke the mould of wine buying and wine drinking in the UK.

24 Matthew Jukes Stick to your guns.

41 The vine post

Foliage clips – securing your canopy.

50 The agronomy diary

Flower formation is a two-year cycle.


New additions available to winemakers

54 Representing you Trade tasting.



Measuring up to knapsack calibration.

Features 21 Vineyard & Winery Show Branded glass for every visitor.

Front cover image: Exton Park © Martin Apps, Countrywide Photographic

globe-asia twitter facebook @VineyardMagGB VineyardMagGB

CONTENTS Features A library of wines


Exton Park is a Hampshire sparkling wine producer with a 60-acre single vineyard planted on a southfacing slope in the South Downs National Park.

A viticulturist's diary


A recent trip to England by Sam allowed a few, spontaneous wine encounters for producers to evaluate Piwi wines. He is hoping to plan more tastings in the future.

Budding fertility


One of the major components of yield is bud fertility. Jo Cowderoy asks the experts how understanding bud fruitfulness can steer management practices to maximise quality and yield.

A changing, challenging landscape


Vitifruit Equipment has been providing machinery solutions and customer service to the vineyard and fruit industries in the UK for more than 25 years.



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From the editor

Sussex rules…OK?

The Vineyard


n Davis

So, the Sussex Wineries Group has possibly ruffled a few feathers by gaining a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) for its wine under the new UK Geographical Indication (GI) scheme. The group says Sussex wine is only the second product to be granted protection under the new ‘UK GI’ scheme, that guarantees a product’s characteristics, authenticity and origin. Apparently, the UK government protects the product name from misuse or imitation - that is assuming it has the time, inclination and resources, bearing in mind all the things the Government, continually, has to sort out. Sussex Wineries state wines labelled as ‘Sussex’ must pass a tough analytical test and qualitative analysis, by an independent tasting panel. The wines are assessed for their clarity, aroma, taste and the characteristics of their bubbles. Sussex sparkling wines must have been aged in the bottle for at least 15 months, before release (see news story and open letter). Putting aside neighbouring rivalries, possible noses out of joint, looking at it dispassionately, you have to regard the move as positive. Anything that puts an English wineproducing region alongside the likes of Champagne (particularly), Burgundy, Bordeaux and Rioja, has to be a major plus. Hopefully, consumers will take on board the significance and the importance of this new designation. For so long English wine was regarded as a bit of joke. Not any more. The European producers may pooh-pooh the PDO, as we are no longer in the European Union the designation therefore lacks any EU credibility or force of law. Nevertheless, the Sussex PDO, does help put English wine on the vinous map. In an ideal world a person wanting a glass of fizz would be asked, as Mark Driver, co-founder of Rathfinny Wine Estate envisages: “Would you like a glass of Champagne or a delicious glass of Sussex?” In the immortal words of The Beach Boys: “Wouldn’t It Be Nice?”


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PDO status granted for Sussex wine


The Sussex Wineries Group has announced that the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) has approved the registration of ‘Sussex’ as a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) for wine under the new UK Geographical Indication (GI) scheme. It means the name ‘Sussex' is protected for quality wines that are made in East and West Sussex. Sussex wine is only the second product to be granted protection under the newly created UK GI scheme and joins a list of products granted protection by the GI scheme, that guarantees a product’s characteristics or reputation, authenticity and origin. The UK government protects the product name from misuse or imitation. Wines labelled as ‘Sussex’ must pass a stringent analytical test and qualitative analysis, by an independent tasting panel. In the case of Sussex sparkling wines this means that the wine must have been aged in the bottle for a minimum of 15 months, before release, and the wines are assessed for their clarity, aroma, taste and the characteristics of their bubbles. The English wine industry has undergone considerable growth in recent years, with the total planted vineyard area in the UK quadrupling since 2000, now standing at more than 8,750 acres (3,500 hectares). Sussex accounts for over a quarter of all the wine produced in the UK. The establishment of this PDO brings Sussex in line with other wellknown winemaking regions around the world, including Burgundy, Champagne, Rioja and Tuscany. The original application for PDO status was granted temporary protection by DEFRA in 2015 and submitted to the EU in 2016 for approval under the EU GI scheme. After the UK’s withdrawal from the European Union, it fell upon the UK government to approve it under the newly created UK GI scheme which supersedes the EU GI scheme. Only those winemakers based in East and West Sussex, meeting a set of quality standards will be able to use the name Sussex on their wine labels. As the county’s reputation for producing top quality wines has grown, Sussex sparkling wines should have the same appeal as a top-quality Champagne.

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> Mark Driver, co-founder Rathfinny Mark Driver, co-founder of Rathfinny Wine Estate (see open letter), said: “We believe that the name Sussex will become synonymous with high quality sparkling and still wine, so when you go into a bar in London, New York, Beijing, or Tokyo you will be asked – Would you like a glass of Champagne or a delicious glass of Sussex?” Wine and Spirit Trade Association chief executive, Miles Beale said: “Not only does the PDO recognise the particular growing conditions found in Sussex, but it also shows the commitment of wine makers in this region to produce high quality still and sparkling wines under strict production criteria. The PDO scheme will enhance English wine's established reputation as a high-quality product to rival the best and boost its vast export potential.” Art Tukker, the owner of Tinwood Estate

said: "The Sussex PDO will cement the bond between the unique soils and climate of the Sussex countryside with our truly remarkable sparkling wines, giving them a sense of place and purpose on the world stage amongst Champagne and our other great rivals.” Mark Driver added: “We believe that Sussex will become a quality marque, reflecting what winemakers call terroir; the soils, influenced by the South Downs, the climate and people who make Sussex wines. The new Sussex PDO will limit the grape varieties that can be used to make ‘Sussex’ wines. It will insist upon hand harvesting and restrict yields in the vineyards, ensuring that only the best grapes are used to make Sussex wines. These stricter winemaking rules also include a qualitative assessment and longer bottle ageing for Sussex sparkling wine.

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“Champagne is so synonymous with quality sparkling wine, that you would think it has been around forever. The old French province, from which it derives its name, dates back more than 600 years, and its winemaking back even further than that – but the association with excellent sparkling wines is comparatively recent. It wasn’t until the early to middle part of the 20th century that Champagne started to achieve the worldwide cache and the success that we know today, and I would argue that this is the result of the establishment of an Appellation d’Origine Contrôlée (AOC) in 1936. Introducing a set of quality standards to the winemaking in the region, to do with yields, minimum potential alcohol content of the grapes, press yields and minimum bottle ageing. Much to the dismay of some of our neighbours in Kent, the government has awarded Sussex wine the prestigious status of a Protected Designation of Origin (PDO), putting the word ‘Sussex’ on the world map as a wine growing region, like Burgundy, Tuscany, Bordeaux and, yes, Champagne. You can forgive the winemakers of Hampshire and Kent for their peevishness, after all the South Downs, that influence the wines made in much of Sussex also extend into Hampshire, and the North Downs which are part of the same band of chalk, runs through Kent and Surrey. There is no difference, they say, but the same could be said for Champagne – one yard over the southern AOC boundary into the old province of Burgundy and you can’t call your wine by the celebrated name – instead you have to describe it as Crémant, resulting in a drop in prestige – and importantly, for winemakers, price. Contrary to some commentators' thoughts, the Sussex PDO is not designed to get one over on our neighbours. Using Champagne, our greatest rival, again as an example, the main reason its winemakers wanted an AOC of their own was because of competition from Burgundy and Bordeaux. Burgundy and Bordeaux wines were prestigious premium wines before sparkling Champagne and they were forming their own AOCs. Champagne wanted a piece of the action. It worked spectacularly for Champagne, but, as we know, it didn't harm Bordeaux and Burgundy either, creating "friendly-ish" competition, that not only increased standards, but made France undeniably the top producer of fine wines in the world today, supporting thousands of jobs and livelihoods. This is why we pushed for the Sussex PDO, or Global Indicator (GI) if you prefer the official name, introducing a set of standards for winemaking that are not restrictive, but ensure a minimum quality level. We were driven by the belief that English sparkling wine has the opportunity to be THE premium sparkling wine on the planet, but like the Champenois we needed to establish a PDO to enable this to happen. In 2021 the South Downs National Park estimated that some 30,000ha of farmed land in Sussex was suitable for viticulture. It was therefore important to establish the quality standards now rather than quibble about them in fifty years’ time. I would encourage other up-and-coming winemaking regions of England and Wales to do the same – and create their own GIs, as Sussex has done, for the greater good of the whole industry as well as its individual parts. There is plenty of room. It is a challenge and an ambition I hope others will take up.”


An open letter from Mark Driver, co-founder Rathfinny Estate


“Ec olo

A coming of age

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Bollinger launches its Pinot Noir exclusive, PN


The Champagne house, Bollinger, has launched a new cure: PN TX17, made exclusively from Pinot Noir. The company said: “It has been crafted by the house to express its vision of this specific grape variety.” The PN TX17 edition is said to explore the unique interpretation of Pinot Noir from Tauxières 2017. A predominant grape across the range, Pinot Noir is said to be the ‘pillar of the Bollinger style’, and the house has forged its reputation by showcasing this variety. Bollinger PN is said to embody the “ambition to bring to light the variety of expressions of Pinot Noir by selecting the best varietal from several terroirs, each contributing a ‘unique component’ to the overall taste.” The third edition, the PN TX17 Champagne is described as a blend, showcasing the features of wines from the Tauxières terroir, which make up the majority of the blend. The significant proportion of Tauxières in this edition’s blend expresses the characteristics of the Pinot Noir from this terroir: tension, precision and complexity. Reserve wines, aged in magnums, are added to bring a sense of aromatic harmony and further complexity to the blend. Due to unfavourable weather, 2017 was a particularly difficult year for Pinot Noir grown in Montagne de Reims, reports Bollinger. The grapes from this harvest are reported to be well-balanced, with a natural alcohol content of 10.1% and an acidity of 7 g/L. The reserve wines contribute to the wine’s aromatic intensity, especially the Pinot Noir aged in magnums for almost 11 years. The aroma of this edition of TX17 is first characterised by notes of dried flowers, joined by aromas of tobacco and mocha. The nose is said to be “sophisticated, subtle and complex, rounding off with notes of liquorice and dried fruit. The palate is fruity and highly refreshing, with notes of apricot, peach and exotic fruit, followed by flavours of acacia honey and spices. A lively, linear wine with great clarity.” Champagne Bollinger general manager, Charles-Armand de Belenet, said: “This cuvée made entirely of Pinot Noir is ingrained in what ha become the very essence, the DNA of our house – an inimitable vision of an iconic grape variety and uncompromising efforts to fulfil the mission we started in 1829 as creators of taste.” Bollinger says PN TX17 is: “A wine to be enjoyed by enthusiasts interested in the expression of Pinot Noir from across the Champagne region.” The RSP for this wine is £85 and it will be available from fine wine merchants.

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NEW EDITION: PN TX17 ◆ 100% Pinot Noir ◆ Main origin: Tauxières ◆ Other villages: Verzenay, Avenay ◆ Base vintage: 2017 ◆ Oldest reserve wine: 2006 ◆ Dosage: very low, 4 grams per litre

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London Wine Fair delivers The 40th live London Wine Fair took place at Olympia last month. Three years on from the last live event in 2019, the show has had a turbulent few months of planning. Emerging from a two-year Pandemic; the shock decision of Prowein to move their dates to directly clash, upsetting numerous exhibitors and visitors; the subsequent move to a June date; visa and travel restrictions for international visitors and exhibitors; and then a tube strike hanging over into day one, made preparations challenging. Despite these challenges, the organisers have reported very positive visitor figures, for the fair’s ‘bounce back year’. The organisers were expecting a reduction in visitor figures in line with the events sector as a whole, while anticipating that the quality of the visitor audience would remain high. 8,822 (total net) visitors attended this year, a 34% decrease on the last – pre-Pandemic – show in 2019 (13,260 visitors attended in 2019). A detailed visitor breakdown will be released to exhibitors later, but initial signs are that levels of seniority and buying power of the visitors are higher than in previous years, claims the organiser. Head of London Wine Fair, Hannah Tovey said: “In 15 years as an event organiser, I have never experienced a show quite like this


one. There have been many highs and lows, but crucially, the London Wine Fair team and its exhibitors have pulled off something very special; a show which has brought the industry back together after a period of incredible uncertainty. The buzz at the show was palpable as the trade returned to face-to-face business, tastings, networking and discovery. Feedback from exhibitors has been overwhelmingly

positive – many have already re-booked their stands for 2023 – with reports of seriously high-quality visitors from the buying sectors, and key decision makers were in abundance. We rigidly pursued the policy of charging attendees introduced in 2019, despite knowing it would negatively affect the overall number of attendees. We remain completely committed to delivering quality attendees over quantity.”

The 2023 London Wine Fair will return to its normal May dates, resuming with its usual Monday opening: London Wine Fair 2023: 15-17 May.


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Encouraging signs New IWSR Data reinforces alcohol’s resilience and status as an ‘affordable luxury’, as value growth significantly outpaces volume growth. Global beverage alcohol value grew by +12% last year to reach US$1.17 trillion, making up for Covid-19 driven value losses of -4% in 2020, according to new data from London-based IWSR Drinks Market Analysis, the leading authority of data and analysis on the global beverage alcohol market. Total alcohol volume grew by +3% in 2021, after losses of -6% the year prior. Examining the industry from across 160 countries throughout the world, IWSR forecasts compound annual volume growth of just above +1% for total beverage alcohol over the next five years, as Covid-19 restrictions continue to ease. “Our latest data shows encouraging signs for the continued recovery of beverage alcohol,” said Mark Meek, CEO at IWSR Drinks Market Analysis. “The market rebounded far more quickly than expected and, in value terms, 2021 is now above 2019. Premiumisation continues unabated; beverage alcohol e-commerce also continues to grow, although at a more moderate rate; and the trend towards moderation continues, with no/low-alcohol products seeing ongoing growth from a relatively low base. Despite the industry’s current and future challenges – ongoing supply-chain disruptions, inflation, war in Ukraine, travel retail’s slow return to pre-2019 levels, and China’s zeroCovid policy – beverage alcohol is in a strong position.”

Has the beverage alcohol market fully recovered from the pandemic? The global beverage alcohol market is expected to surpass 2019 volumes within the next two years. While beer, cider and international spirits have not yet reached 2019 volumes, they have all met or surpassed 2019 levels in value terms. Wine has also surpassed 2019 value levels, though overall global category volumes are expected to continue on a downward trajectory.

What is driving growth in the wine category?


Global still wine volumes were down -2% last year, but value was up by +5%, as the ‘less but better’ trend continues to underlie the trajectory of the still wine category. Noteworthy gains in wine were seen in the sparkling category as consumers returned to celebratory occasions in full force with the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions. Champagne posted volume growth of +24% last year, and other sparkling wines were up +7.5%. Over the next five years, the global wine category is forecast to continue on its trajectory of long-term volume decline (-1%, 2021–2026), but will see value gains of +5%.

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Will premiumisation continue?

Premiumisation continues unabated for spirits and wines in the premium and above price tier. Premium-plus spirits (priced at US$22.50 or above) are forecast to grow by more than +50% in value in the Americas between 2021–2026; over +40% in Africa and the Middle East; over +20% in Europe, and just under +20% in Asia-Pacific. In fact, the single largest driver of beverage alcohol value over the next five years will be the growth of premium-and-above national spirits in Asia-Pacific. Globally, wine in the premium-and-above price band (US$10 or above) grew by +12% in value last year, and is forecast to increase in value by +16% between 2021–2026.

How will the RTD market evolve post-pandemic?

RTDs have been a stand-out category during the pandemic, increasing in volume by +14% in 2021 – on top of +26% growth in 2020. By volume, the category is now about a third of the size of the global spirits category, as well as the global wine category. Globally, RTD products are expected to grow by +44% in volume and +51% in value over the next five years. Category growth will continue in the world’s largest RTD markets, the US and Japan. In Japan, the RTD category is expected to expand in volume by more than +30% over the next five years, driven particularly by flavoured alcoholic beverages (FABs). In the US, propelled by the popularity of hard seltzers, the RTD category saw continued volume growth at +15% last year; RTD value growth (+22% last year) will begin to outpace volume growth in the US, as the category matures and higher priced spirit-based RTDs gain traction in the market. At a lower growth rate than in previous years, hard seltzer volumes in the US are expected to overtake those of still wine within the next two years.


“Challenges remain, including whether bars and restaurants will continue to attract consumers who have grown comfortable with e-commerce and at-home consumption and whether consumers will accept price increases on their preferred brands,” said Mark Meek. “We’re living in an age of uncertainty, and these are uncharted waters for the industry. However, as we have seen in previous crises, this is a very resilient industry sector.” Note: All value growth figures in this article are given at variable currency rates. At constant currency, the value growth rates show that global beverage alcohol value grew by +9% last year to reach about US$1.17 trillion, making up for Covid-19 impacted value losses of -2% in 2020.


The Gusbourne Run NFU Mutual Ashford, Tenterden & Whitfield recently announced their intention to sponsor The Gusbourne Run this July, an event organised by Sporting Events UK. The Gusbourne Run is a unique, picturesque event for Kent taking place within the vineyards themselves. The day is the perfect opportunity for local runners, sightseers and wine drinkers to come together to experience a 10k and 5k. NFU Mutual Ashford, Tenterden & Whitfield partners Doug Jackson, George Ashby & Darren Smith also recognised The Gusbourne Run as the perfect event to help fundraise for one of their affiliated charities; Dandelion Time. Located near West Farleigh, Dandelion Time gives children and families time and space to love and trust again, as well as time to heal from emotional trauma and abuse, rebuild confidence and strengthen relationships. The charity recognises the importance of being in a peaceful natural environment, absorbing children in calming hands on activities. Therapists guide To book your place on either the 10k or 5k or to learn more: families to harness the healing powers of the natural world. They do this by using wood, wool and clay, caring for animals and growing and eating healthy food thus laying down new positive memories. NFU Mutual Ashford, Tenterden & Whitfield have been supporting Dandelion Time since last year following the NFU Mutual’s Agency Giving Fund, and have continued to volunteer and fundraise for them since. The agency has managed to secure thirteen runners from across their three offices to participate in the Gusbourne Run and fundraise for Dandelion Time in the build up to the event. Amongst the runners are partners Doug Jackson, George Ashby and Darren Smith. On the donation from NFU Mutual Ashford, Tenterden & Whitfield, Dandelion Time’s Fundraising Coordinator Jo Challis said: “Dandelion Time  Office 01273 492404 are grateful for the support from NFU Mutual Ashford, Tenterden & Whitfield. � As a small charity, having this support will make such a huge difference in  transforming the lives of abused and neglected children in Kent. Since the pandemic incidents of domestic violence have increased by 50% and this donation will directly transform the lives of vulnerable children.” NFU Mutual Ashford, Tenterden & Whitfield Senior Partner and Gusbourne Runner Doug Jackson said of the sponsorship: “Our team will We specialise in the supply and be fundraising for Dandelion Time, an incredible charity that offers help construction of steel framed 100% to children with challenging emotional issues. We’re really pleased to be buildings. We have a wealth of knowledge and experience in the supporting a variety of great local organisations within one event as we British designed wine and fruit production sector to & built continue to be an advocate for supporting our community.” complete your new facility NFU Mutual Ashford, Tenterden and Whitfield have also donated their Over Based in the heart of Sussex, events stand to Dandelion Time so that they can have a prominent position 35 covering the South East. in the mini event village on the day of the run, in order to build awareness Sussex builders Years experience for the charity. A JustGiving page was recently launched to help the since at least 1605. thirteen runners fundraise in the leadup to the event: Forma offer all aspects of steel Site visits framed construction and cladding The Gusbourne Run takes place on the Sunday 24 July and is open to all together with groundworks and Call to arrange a entries above 18. Every finisher will get a great medal to mark the occasion site survey electrical fit out if required. and with wine tasting stops throughout the run, this will be an event that appeals to many. � �  @info_forma


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Are you carbon farming in your vineyard? Scientists at the Natural Resources Institute (NRI), of the University of Greenwich are undertaking a study to understand the uptake and perception of Carbon farming practices amongst the UK wine industry. Carbon farming refers to a variety of agricultural methods aimed at sequestering atmospheric carbon into soil, improving overall soil health and mitigating climate change. While carbon sequestration has been widely studied in sectors such as arable farming this is not the case for the fastgrowing wine industry in the UK. The University is seeking growers, vineyard managers and owners to take part in an anonymous survey to aid this research. The survey takes no more than 10 minutes to complete. This project is led by Dr Marcos Paradelo Perez. This initiative is just one of a suite of projects being undertaken by the Institute to support UK vineyards. NRI has recently set up a stateof-the-art laboratory focused on monitoring soil health, with capability to measure water infiltration in field and lab, soil moisture curves and soil compaction, as well as microbial assessments. Using these techniques it is possible to monitor and optimise the impact of new soil management strategies adopted as farmers and growers move towards more sustainable practices. Other projects focus on crop protection. Virus infections severely shorten the economic productive lifespan of a vineyard and reduce wine quality but very little is known about the

prevalence of viruses in UK vineyards. Dr Gonçalo Silva is developing on-site diagnostic tools that will contribute to more efficient control strategies and guarantee the full lifespan of a vineyard by

rapidly identifying infected vines in established vineyards while also testing planting material imported from nurseries to limit the introduction and spread of new viral diseases.

◆ For information on soil management contact Dr Paradelo Perez: ◆ For information on diagnostic tests for viruses contact Dr Gonçalo Silva: ◆ To access the survey visit:

Limited-edition Riesling NFT


A limited release of Riesling-themed NFTs has been launched to celebrate the digital-forward, 11th edition of ’31 Days of German Riesling’. Now in its 11th year, the award-winning campaign ’31 Days of German Riesling’ has taken wine bars, restaurants and independent retailers by storm each July for the past decade. In 2022, it launches into the Metaverse for the first time with the creation of 31 German Riesling NFTs, one to celebrate each day of the promotion. A German Riesling-themed NFT has been created for wine lovers and NFT-afficionados alike to add to their collection. Each of the 31 copies available will also act as a token for a prize draw, in which all UK entrants are guaranteed to receive at least one bottle of German Riesling, with one lucky purchaser receiving a case of six. All proceeds from the sale of the limited-edition NFTs will be donated to The Drinks Trust, supporting those in need in the drinks industry.

Over 130 sites across the country have signed up to this year’s 31 Days of German Riesling campaign, with plans ranging from virtual tastings and wine flights, to walk around tastings and Enomatic machine takeovers. This year, the newly-appointed Riesling Ambassador, Tom Surgey, will also be hosting sessions for a select group of participants. “German Riesling has a place on every wine list and wine rack, so why not a place in the Metaverse, too? We’ve been thrilled to see how the campaign has grown as the UK has re-discovered German Riesling,” said Wines of Germany UK Director Nicky Forrest In addition to the NFT release, Wines of Germany has developed a new consumer hub to educate consumers about Germany’s star variety and show how they can make the most of 31 Days of German Riesling this July. Visitors to the new website will be able to search for retailers, wine bars, restaurants and events near them and discover more about the variety in an interactive arcade.


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Study predicts growth in UK wine production due to climate change > Dr Alistair Nesbitt


New research reveals how climate change is likely to increase the potential for wine production in the UK – with conditions projected to resemble those in famous growing regions of France and Germany. Over the last 20 years, climate change has contributed to a growth in UK vineyard area – with more than 800 vineyards now – and awardwinning wine production, as well as a transition in wine style towards sparkling wines. Now a team of researchers from the University of East Anglia (UEA), the London School of Economics, Vinescapes and Weatherquest have charted the potential for the sector over the next 20 years. Drawing on the latest detailed climate projections, they have developed cutting-edge capability to model and map the best opportunities for grape growing and winemaking in the UK. Their findings, published in the journal OENO One, show how the climate of a larger area of England and Wales is projected to become suitable for reliably growing sparkling wine grape varieties, and how the potential for high quality still wine production is rapidly emerging. Lead UEA researcher Prof Steve Dorling, of the School of Environmental Sciences and forecasting company Weatherquest Ltd, said: “We’ve seen viticulture in the UK expand nearly 400% from 761 to 3800 hectares between 2004 and 2021. “Over that period the warming climate has supported more reliable yield and quality of the Pinot Noir and Chardonnay grape varieties – these varieties are blended in the production of champagne-style sparkling wine. “Warm, dry UK growing seasons like 2018, with lower than average disease problems in the vines, led to production of a record-breaking 15.6 million bottles and these growing conditions have already become and are projected to become more common.” The Climate Resilience in the UK Wine Sector (CREWS-UK) project was funded by the Natural Environment Research Council as part of the UK Climate Resilience Programme. The researchers considered how often growing conditions in the UK are projected to climatically resemble those seen, most recently, in the famous sparkling and still wine producing regions of Champagne and Burgundy; and in Baden in Germany. Their results highlight that since the 1980’s there

NEWS has already been a warming of over 1°C during the growing season in much of south east and eastern England, a shift which has been one of the key enablers for growth and variety change in the UK viticulture sector over this time. The study’s lead author Dr Alistair Nesbitt, of vineyard and winery consultancy Vinescapes, said: “This work is a UK first, a unique combination of climate change science, viticulture and wine expertise. “We found that significant areas within England and Wales are projected to become warmer by 2040 by up to a further 1.4°C during the growing season. This expands the area of suitability for Pinot Noir for sparkling wine production, but also new areas will open up within the growing season temperature suitability range for still Pinot Noir production and for growing varieties such as Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Semillon and more disease-resistant varieties, which are hardly grown in the UK at present. “Furthermore, anyone thinking of investing in a vineyard in the UK can now benefit from this knowledge through advice on the best locations, both now and under future climate change conditions.” The team used UK Climate Projections 2018 scenarios to assess future variety and wine style suitability in the UK, and potential for viticulture investments, sector adaptation and resilience over

the period 2021-2040. Areas in East Anglia, Lincolnshire, south central England, north east Wales and coastal areas in south west England and southern Wales are projected to have 2018 ‘conditions’ during 20212040 in 60%-75% of years, meaning the exceptional 2018 vintage will become more common. Meanwhile large areas in south eastern and eastern England are projected to come into a suitable range for still red Pinot Noir production. While Pinot Noir for sparkling wine is already successfully grown in the UK, the projected growing season temperature increases now indicate the new and increasing opportunity for still Pinot Noir production in some areas. Nesbitt said: “We have shown that in some areas of the UK the bumper vintage of 2018 will become the norm, and that Champagne region grape growing temperatures from 1999-2018 are projected to occur across an expanding area of England during 2021-2040. In certain years, a few areas of the UK may see growing season climates similar to those that contributed to the very best recent vintages of Champagne, as well as support increased potential for Burgundy and Baden-style still red wines.” However, the researchers warn significant challenges remain, arguing that the rapidly changing UK climate requires the industry to remain agile and not ‘lock-in’ to production which


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cannot adapt to the changing growing conditions. Steve Dorling said: “There are exciting times ahead for the UK wine sector, but our results have emphasised the challenge of establishing wine identities and brands, in particular those tightly associated with varieties and wine styles, in a rapidly changing climate.” In addition, British weather can still be unpredictable, as the 2012 vintage demonstrated when much UK grape production was lost due to the cool and very wet flowering period. Year to year climatic variability will remain, including early season frost risk, even if the longer-term trends are good ones. Sustainable vineyard and winery investment decisions will also still require careful analysis of all the associated growing environment and market risks. Dr Alistair Nesbitt said: “Through our advisory services our teams at Vinescapes and Weatherquest are enjoying supporting the sustainable growth of the UK wine sector and we’re immensely grateful to WineGB, the industry body, for facilitating all the engagement we’ve had with viticulture and wine production people throughout the CREWS-UK project.” ‘Climate change projections for UK viticulture to 2040: a focus on improving suitability for Pinot Noir’, Alistair Nesbitt et al, was published in OENO One on 8 July.

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Premium prices being paid The boom in UK wine is fuelling land prices.

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A rare and exciting opportunity to establish a vineyard at the heart of the English wine region. The Glyndebourne Estate is seeking expressions of interest for approximately 22.3ha of land suitable for viticulture near Lewes. We would be interested to hear from parties who might consider a long term rental, joint venture, profit share arrangement, or similar. The land is not available for sale. James Harvey 01273 407021 /struttandparker


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The growth of the UK wine sector is translating to strong demand for land suitable for vines and wine producers are also exploring options to grow their businesses by buying or renting established vineyards. Nick Watson, head of Strutt & Parker’s viticulture group, said the boom in UK wine is leading to premium prices being paid for land suitable for planting vines and there is no sign of this letting up. “We continue to get enquiries from people who are keen to start a new venture – some looking for just a couple of acres so they can start winemaking as a hobby, but other operators with a strong commercial focus looking for sites of 20-30 acres or more. “Only a small proportion of the land which comes to the open market each year is suitable for planting with vines, so most vineyard land must be proactively sought out and purchased privately. As such, any potential buyer tends to need to offer a premium to persuade a reluctant vendor to sell. This means that, while most arable land in the UK sells for between £8,000 and £10,000/acre, ground suitable for vineyard planting often sells for £15,000-25,000/acre.” Mr Watson said the number of existing vineyards sold each year is small and again most transactions are off-market. But the best vineyards are reaching £30,000-35,000/planted acre, if well-planted, on the right site and with the right vines. A more recent market development is evidence that there is a strong lettings market for good quality, proven and established vineyards. “We have just completed the letting of a small, established, champagne trio vineyard in the prime of its production for approximately £1,850/acre. Demand was strong and the successful applicant is an established producer with a great reputation. We believe this is the first market letting of an established and productive vineyard.”


Branded glass for every visitor The Vineyard & Winery show is proud to announce Urban Bar are once again the show’s glassware sponsor for 2022, providing an exclusive branded glass for every visitor. Urban Bar have been designing market leading bar and glassware for the hospitality and drinks industry for 40 years. “Our aim is to produce shapes that enhance the pleasure and enjoyment of the drinking experience – matching the beverage to it’s perfect glass. “We offer machine and handmade glasses that can also be branded such as we have done for The Vineyard & Winery Show, as well as providing a comprehensive range of our own barware. All of our items have been designed with purpose, practicality and longevity in mind. We believe that the effort put into producing or making a drink should be reflected in what it is served in,” commented Nick Andrews, Director. “We work with the world’s leading spirits and drinks brands to develop glass and barware to suit their brand characteristics, decoration requirements, budget, route to market and ultimate use. We offer a complete design service so suppliers can develop their own style of glass, working with them through to production to develop a bespoke design which perfectly matches the demands of their brand,” he added. Jamie McGrorty, Kelsey Publisher, commented: “Providing every visitor to the show with a complimentary branded glass in a box is a really nice touch by Urban Bar – and each glass is a gift for the visitor to keep, a wonderful memento of the 2022 show. “During these Covid-19 sensitive times it will also ensure that everyone will feel safe with their own personal glass, which is important. We are absolutely delighted that Urban Bar are keen to continue their support of The Vineyard & Winery Show.”


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In conversation...

Steve Danie


‘Legend’ is not a term that should be used lightly but Steve Daniel is a legend in terms of the UK licensed retail wine sector. This is the man, who through Oddbins, broke the mould of wine buying and wine drinking in the UK. Your background

◆ Oddbins: 1987 to 2003 ◆ Novum Wines: 2003 to 2010 ◆ Hallgarten & Novum Wines: 2010 to present.

How did you become a wine buyer? I applied for a job as trainee buyer with Oddbins and the rest is history.

What style, type, country’s wine, do you personally enjoy? Wines that reflect their origin and the vineyard’s terroir. Predominantly Greek wines.


Hallgarten & Novum Wines is one of the UK’s leading specialist wine merchants, with more than 89 years’ experience importing wines from producers around the world. Hallgarten were named both On-Trade Supporter of the Year by the International Wine Challenge and On-Trade Supplier of the Year by The Drinks Business in 2021, thanks to the focus on service and support for customers. Its experienced buying team includes some of the UK’s most respected palates in Steve Daniel, and master of wine Beverly Tabbron, who have together constructed a diverse and award-winning portfolio of over 1,000 wines, blending some of the world’s greatest producers from the classic wine growing regions together with innovative, up-andcoming wineries and winemakers from the emerging winemaking world.

What is the profile of your customers? We work closely with partners across the on and off trade, from premium restaurants, hotels and pub groups to independent wine merchants and high street retailers.

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Henry Jeffreys wrote on the Master of Malt blog: “Before Oddbins, wine was stuffy, class-ridden and largely French. Afterwards, wine became normal: it could be enjoyed in front of the telly, it might not be French, it might not even come in a bottle! The chain, still existing but now in a much diminished form, dates back to the 1960s but had its heyday in the 1980s and ‘90s. Steve Daniel, who joined the firm as a trainee buyer in 1987, was there for the glory years. By contrast, Oddbins shops were scruffy, unpretentious and stacked full of interesting

wine, especially from the New World. “It was a chance to bring in Australian wines in a big way for the first time,” Daniel said. Latterly Daniel championed Greek wines, hitherto unknown in the UK. Steve Daniel is now head of wine buying at Hallgarten & Novum Wines, one of the UK’s leading specialist wine merchants, with more than 89 years’ experience importing wines from producers around the world and supplying the premium on-trade and off-trade. Family-owned and renowned for supplying premium wines to the finest restaurants, hotels, pubs and bars throughout the country.

So, does H&N list English and/ or Welsh Wines?

Broadly, what do you think of English/Welsh wines?

Yes, we currently have 25 English wines in our portfolio from across the south of the country.

I think the English wine sector has moved from a hobbyist industry to a professional one. I still believe that in many cases the quality of some wines needs to improve in order to justify the price points demanded.

If yes, which ones?

We list the wines from Sugrue South Downs, Simpsons Wine Estate, New Hall Wine Estate, Blackbook Winery and the Goring label from Wiston Estate.

What are you looking for when considering new wines to list? We are looking across the UK at various regions and what grape varieties they can offer. We are also looking for wines that represent value for money – customers don’t mind spending a premium price, as long as they feel they are getting value for money.

What do you expect a supplier/producer to supply to you in advance? We expect a clear outline of pricing, current distribution and volumes available, and a willingness to grant exclusivity of supply to Hallgarten.

Do you have a minimum drop for a listing?

What are English and Welsh producers doing well? Making better wines and improving their packaging.

Conversely, what aren’t they doing well – what should they be considering/thinking/ doing? Producers need to be more regimented in their approach to their market, and need better managed marketing and sales strategies.

Customers don’t mind spending a premium price, as long as they feel they are getting value for money.

What trends do you discern in wine sales and is there anything that English and Welsh viticulturists, and vinifers should be addressing, going forward? There is a move to lower alcohol, fresher wines, and this is exactly the style UK vintners can produce. Consumers are also looking more at food and wine miles, and UK wineries are perfectly poised to embrace this movement.

Is there anything you would like to say to English and Welsh winemakers and producers? Keep up the good work and keep improving wine quality! Watch the rest of Europe when setting prices – UK wines are pitched well above average consumer spending levels, and above some classic French wines, so are in danger of pricing themselves out of the market. There will be a squeeze on wine spending in the next year, and there are a lot of vineyards in the ground in the UK and in the pipeline now.

> Hallgarten & Novum Wines: Mulberry House

No. It is all dealt with on a case-by-case basis.



Mat h e w

Stick to your guns

es Juk


Our business is full of inspirational people. It’s always nice to hear from readers and moments after my column was published last month, my Twitter feed sputtered into life and then within the hour an email landed in my inbox. It turns out that there is an English wine with ‘White from White’ written proudly on its label and so the premise of my July column was somewhat flawed. I argued that French wine terminology always sounds better than the English translation, but the author of said email, Will Boscawen, felt strongly that we should only be using English terminology on our English wines. We set up a call and I must admit, he is not wrong. Will has trademarked the terms ‘White from White’ and ‘White from Black’, which I must say is incredibly prescient. He is clearly a passionate chap and he has a great sense of humour, too. While mulling over what his next move might be with these two precious terms in his pocket, he noted, “Obviously, I could keep it for our wines only, but I’m not sure I want to be in a 'category of one'. And I’m half minded to say, in light of the new 'Sussex PDO' nonsense, that we should let this term be used by any English wine maker outside of the Sussex PDO!” I enjoyed a fabulous conversation with Will and we need many more characters in our business with his passion and foresight and also his healthy desire to challenge convention.

I could not fault anything he said, in fact, I asked him to send me his fabled ‘White from White’ wine without delay and it, accordingly, informs the theme of this month’s column – stick to your guns! Our business is full of inspirational people and none more so than Mr Boscawen. This month I celebrate a couple of other wineries who have done nothing other than sticking to their own guns with remarkable results.

2019 Mereworth, White from White £36.50

Here it is, the wine that might turn English vinous nomenclature on its head and, by golly, it is a beauty. Will Boscawen’s sparkling Chardonnay is resplendent in its chic livery, and the flavour lives up to its chestthumping message. This is a luminous, luxurious and lively wine with a faint orchard blossom nose, a buoyant, silky mid-palate and a succulent, chalky finish that teases the taste buds sending you back for more. I detect quiet patriotism and a confident sense of place in every molecule, and, in time, this wine might be remembered as a wine that stuck to its guns and was also the first to go over the top.

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2021 New Hall Wine Estate, Barons Lane White, Crouch Valley, England £12.50

2021 Oastbrook, Pinot Blanc £21.00

I am unerringly drawn to and inevitably fascinated by the wines from Oastbrook. Winemaker America Brewer has stuck to her guns from day one, and you can taste the effort and determination in every wine she makes. My bottle of 2021 PB was number 102/600, and so there is a ‘rare edition’ feeling about these wines with their smart new labels and lovingly handwritten ‘number plates’. This Pinot Blanc is nothing short of spellbinding, with smooth, luxurious and layered fruit notes. It is superbly weighted, long and honed, and while it is impactful and breathtakingly impressive, it cleverly stops short of being as pulpy and viscous as Alsatian versions of this grape. In addition, 2021 Oastbrook Pinot Meunier is another astoundingly astute wine. With a textbook Meunier perfume and a lip-smacking, pliable mid-palate, this is another head-turner from Oastbrook and, because I know you love the detail, it was number 43/500.

There is no doubting the tenacity and longevity of Bill and Sheila Greenwood’s tenure at New Hall. Founded in 1969, this was one of the very first serious English wine labels, and in 2021 it received a crisp, new makeover that I find very pleasing to the eye. I tasted the entire portfolio of new vintage still wines, and it is thrilling to report that Signature, Single Estate Bacchus, Pinot Noir Rosé and also the Barons Lane Red are all wines that could have made the headline spot here. As it turned out, my chosen bottle is this bargain-priced, citrusy and pin-sharp Barons Lane White. Chapel Down’s Flint Dry used to own the ‘best value white in the country’ tagline, but not so this year with this new volley of beautifully expressive wines from New Hall.

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Exton Park is a Hampshire sparkling wine producer with a 60-acre single vineyard planted on a south-facing slope in the South Downs National Park. Its first vines were planted in 2003, including Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier, and its state-of-theart winery was built in 2011.


an vis Editor Da

A library of wines

C h risti

Exton founder, Malcolm Isaac MBE, is a Hampshire-born farmer and entrepreneur who made his fortune introducing packaged salad and watercress to the UK. He turned his eye to the vineyard in 2009 when he bought Exton Park after seeing the potential of the chalky soil. The vineyard was planted with four hectares of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier in 2003. It was later expanded with the help of vineyard director, Fred Langdale. In 2011, a winery was designed and built by wine director, Corinne Seely, and Exton Park’s first bottle of wine was produced in 2015. Corinne Seely’s vision was/is to create Photos: ©Martin Apps, Countrywide Photographic consistent, premium quality sparkling wine, irrespective of the year’s weather or yield. She began building a library of reserve wines in 2011 which would enable her to have an archive of wines to use in her blends. In 2021, Exton Park launched it’s signature Reserve Blend range – RB32 Brut, RB28 Blanc de Noirs, RB23 Rosé and RB45 Blanc de Blancs. Corinne has developed these wines using her 10-year library of reserves using between 80-100% of reserve wines in each bottle. This offers a level of consistency rarely seen in the industry and guarantees premium quality taste every year. A single vineyard producer, Reserve Blend is Exton’s signature style. The RB range draws on the 10-year library of reserve wines that has been curated and stored in the winery at Exton Park since 2011. Corinne, composes the blends from a variety of flavours captured from the 60 acre single vineyard each year. Corinne believes Exton’s chalky soil sets its 60 acres of Hampshire apart. The single vineyard has nine plots, nurtured by Fred Langdale and his team, each planted at a different altitude and aspect, offering flavour variation in the grapes. <<

Vineyard: 60 acres/24.3 hectares Grape varieties: ◆ Chardonnay ◆ Pinot Noir ◆ Pinot Meunier Soils: Sub soil, chalk Alkaline Ph 8. Aspect: South, south-east and East.

> Corinne Seely

VINEYARD FACT SHEET Treatments: Trapping and monitoring. Encouraging bats to the vineyard. Trellising: Single and double Guyot, VSP, Chablis. Canopy management: Shoot removal, leaf thinning.

Diseases experienced: Grapevine trunk disease (GTD).

Green harvest: Depending on the growing season, and size of the yield on the vines.

Pests: Light brown apple moth larvae.

Harvesting: Hand harvest.

Timings… ◆ 2008 to 2015 harvest start date, second week of October ◆ 2016 to 2021 harvest start date, last week of September What’s new? We have started to mechanise more in the vineyard, but it is important to us not to mechanise any work that could compromise the quality of the crop. Cover crops in the vineyard are playing a key role in improving Exton’s soil health and soil microbiology. The understanding of working with the land instead of making the land work for the team is complicated but essential to a sustainable vineyard. No weed killers are used on the vineyard.


EDITOR'S IN THE VISIT WINERY FACT SHEET What happens in the winery: There is no crushing. We always press whole bunches.

Processing/Equipment: If there is one supplier to be named, it should be Bucher from whom we bought our Inertys Presses.


By Hand, generally at the beginning of October. Plot by plot. Each trial in the vineyard is pressed separately. Everything is kept separate.


Long Pressings at low pressure under nitrogen that enables us to use less sulfites as well. Unique method to make our Rosé by direct pressurage for extra long hours until we have got the right colour.

Fermentation: Most of it is done in stainless steel vats but some wines are fermenting in secondhand barrels, notably for the RB45 100% Chardonnay.


It would be a de-acidification. However we do not do it. We try not to chaptalise and we are not afraid to have low alcohol content in our final product (between 11% and 11.5%)

Bottling: Every year, done by a French team who come especially for us.


As much as possible, in vats, in barrels, on lees before and after bottling. For us, time and patience are the keys to bring complexity and maturity into the wines.


The more you age a Chardonnay, you can build those brioche flavours but you still have a level of acidity that is integrated and balanced, and keeps the wine fresh.

> Fred Langdale, Vineyard Director

<< “We nourish and nurture our vineyard using the most natural methods possible, by planting wildflowers, grasses and cover crops and meticulously hand-pruning our 120,000 vines. Come harvest time, only the ripest fruit is selected and swiftly transported to our purpose-built winery at the top of vineyard,” said Corinne. Corinne even designed the small-batch tanks. “We don’t use a base vintage, relying instead on our library to offer a complexity rarely seen in English sparkling wine,” claimed Corinne. “This guarantees the quality of every bottle, irrespective of the year’s weather or yield. It also provides exceptional consistency of flavour, ensuring that every sip is the purest possible reflection of our Hampshire vineyard.” Once a Reserve Blend has been crafted, it is bottled and laid to rest in the wine cellars for at least three years. Corinne moved to England two months before Brexit. She studied oenology at the Université de Bordeaux’s Institute of Vine and Wine Science and worked at Bordeaux giants, Château Lynch-Bages and Domaine de Chevalier. She travelled extensively, doing consultancy work. “After a few years, I wanted to understand more about terroir,” she said. She met Exton’s founder, Malcolm Isaac (see panel). “He ‘stole’ my life! I was living in France, working in Portugal everywhere! Now, I am permanently in England. “English people are not like the French. I am more Latin. I lived in a pub for many years. People here are warm, friendly and welcoming. The people in the pub became more family. People in England like to drink a lot,” she quipped. With English wines just about 11%…” Corinne stated: “We do not follow any recipe. We work together closely. I spend a lot of time in the vineyard together with Fred. We discuss which rows of Chardonnay we are going to pick.” Whereas at Hambledon they encourage some contact with oxygen (see June issue), at Exton Park, it is nitrogen that is used to retain “primary freshness” and reduce the use of sulphites. They press whole bunches under pressure and then the subsequent vacuum is replaced with nitrogen. “The big key is, by doing this, it enables us to use fewer sulphites to otherwise stop oxidation. That is the only technical thing. We try to express the terroir of Exton Park. I think this is a very special place. I have vinified in Dorset, Kent, Sussex and, obviously, Hampshire. I think Exton Park has such a concentration of flavours. I believe the chalk has such an impact. It helps provide the backbone, the intensity, the vibrance. It (the flavours) remains in the mouth for a long time.” Fred Langdale is the man in the vineyard, endlessly experimenting, seeking something approaching viticultural perfection - if there is ever such a thing with the vagaries of climate and everything else that goes on in and around a vineyard. Last year Downey Mildew was an issue

to be dealt with. The health of the vineyard is paramount. They do not, use weedkillers; insects, pollinators are key. He said: “I started planting cover crops in similar rows so we had a control. Similarly we also try different pruning so we are able to compare. The plants benefit the vines. We want to work with what is going on in the field, not against it.” Fred has become a worm counter. He started counting the worms in the soil as a way of gauging the health of the soil…simply, the more worms, the more nutrients in the soil. He acknowledges the importance of equipment, particularly with the seemingly increasing lack of experienced trained staff, but

as he said: “Careful, not too much. Machines can cause damage.” Corinne believes the wines of Champagne are changing, perhaps getting heavier in style, possibly due to global warming, she opines. “The minerality, the purity of the fruit. There is an intensity. The bubbles are very fine. That is why I am here. “I like to have fun. We have fantastic terroir and working as a team makes it very creative. We have this library of reserve wines. Not many can afford to do that. It is not cheap, a special investment, but the founder believes in this project. It is not a question of cashflow,” she concluded. <<

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The Exton Park board Malcom Isaac Founder Malcolm Isaac MBE is described as Exton Park’s visionary and inspiration. Part of the pioneering cohort of post-war entrepreneurs, Malcolm and his brother were largely responsible for the resurrection of the flagging watercress industry. Following a Nuffield farming scholarship to the US, he introduced baby leaf salads to the UK market and modernised the UK salad industry. Farms in Portugal, Spain, Kenya and the US soon followed – creating a successful and profitable business, Vitacress Salads Ltd.

Rupert Younger Non-Executive Chairman Rupert works at the University of Oxford where he is a leading thinker and bestselling author on reputation, activism and trust. He lives in the Meon Valley, close to the vineyard, and is a former High Sheriff of Hampshire (2013-14). Rupert is a Trustee of the international mine clearance and humanitarian charity The HALO Trust, and is a member of the Royal Company of Archers, the Queen’s Bodyguard in Scotland. He was appointed Non-Executive Chairman in 2018.

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Lucy Stanforde Non-Executive Board Member

After many years at Christie’s Auction House, Lucy started working for the founder of Exton Park, Malcolm Isaac, in 2008 shortly before he purchased the vineyard. She acts as liaison between Malcolm and the vineyard and is integral to the day-to-day running of the business.

Nicola Arcedeckne-Butler MW Non-Executive Board Member Nicola is a Master of Wine who is currently Director of Buying for Private Cellar, a personalised luxury wine business. She passed the prestigious Master of Wine exam in 1996 and joined the board in 2021.

David Phelps Non-Executive Board Member David is the co-founder and CEO of Mahiki. He is an entertainments and luxury lifestyle entrepreneur who has dominated the London and UK night life scene for the past three decades, having owned over 75 venues (bars, restaurants and clubs) as well as operating outdoor high end events. He joined the Exton Park board in 2021.

Guy Lawrence Non-Executive Board Member Guy is Managing Director of Brockmans Gin and chair of La Hechicera, an ultra premium rum brand. He was UK CEO of Jaegermeister from 2013-2020, overseeing the repositioning of this now iconic brand and its phenomenal commercial success.

Making waves in innovation Hampshire sparkling wine producer Exton Park previews its 2014 vintage sea-aged Blanc de Blanc, ‘60 Below’, which has spent 12 months ageing under the sea off the coast of Brest in Brittany, France, still in its pre-disgorgement form. Under French law, Champagne can only leave their maisons’ cellar door after disgorgement has taken place; but Exton Park has been able to conduct its own experiment to see what happens when its wine remains on its lees completely sealed off from outside air at 60 metres under the water. Exton Park wine director Corinne Seely said: “Key here is the fact that there is a perpetual movement on the bottles while they are resting on their lees under the water – darkness and temperature are already replicated in the cellar, but what is going to be so interesting is to see the effect that the constant and gentle movement of the sea has on the ageing of the wines, as well as the similar pressure outside and inside the bottle.” Exton Park plans to release 180 of these very limited-edition wines later this year, when they will have had seven years of lees-ageing in total - of which one was under the sea. Corinne said: “We have spent the last 10 years experimenting and innovating in our winery. The English wine industry is still a relatively young one, but we are not constrained by the same regulations that the Champagne Houses are. The ‘under-the-sea’ project is an opportunity for us to really push the boundaries and test how our wines respond to ageing in

different conditions.” To immerse the wine in the best possible location, Exton Park worked with Amphoris, a team of marine project specialists. Their ‘underwater cellar’ offers a safe and secure location away from fishing and military activity, as well as complete darkness, a constant temperature and specific sea bed, current and swell characteristics. Amphoris’s Denis Drouin said: “Amphoris has designed an innovative underwater ageing service, specifically for wine professionals, that offers a more scientific approach. Our underwater cellars (-60m and -20m water depth) hold tens of thousands of bottles of Champagne, sparkling wine, still wine and spirits in patented caissons. They are located at the heart of the Molène archipelago, near the island of Ouessant (Ushant), off the coast of Brittany, in the Atlantic Ocean which we believe is the best possible location to meet our strict, scientific criteria.” 60 Below, will be released in October so it will be available initially through 'The Vault' before it goes into general release


















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Time to try Piwi varieties A recent trip to England by Sam allowed a few, spontaneous wine encounters for producers to evaluate Piwi wines. He is hoping to plan more tastings in the future. Here are his musings… The outdoor Piwi wine tasting, Bockenheim, Pfalz, has been and gone, all in glorious weather. The first time that this event has been held, so it was a pleasure to find a modest range of around 25 wineries attending. A broad number of people, wine styles, varieties, and blends made for an interesting afternoon. Sadly a few more attendees could have given the occasion a touch more vitality, but at least we could get to the wines that we wanted to try, and to meet the makers. Some of the wines presented were being poured by another industry colleague, so it was not always possible to ask a technical question to the right person. It was noticeable that a few of the local high profile Piwi wine producers were not showing their wines, from which I can only presume that demand for their wines is such that there is little


call to attend such an event. (In the hope of picking up sales contacts.) This is very believable as certainly good wines get talked about, and as such sell out quickly. The wines were all Piwi, that is to say that there were no wines that were made as a blend, from both Piwi and Vitis Vinifera together. Certainly there were many inter-Piwi blends, but (elsewhere) I have noticed an increase of interesting wines recently based on Piwi and V. vinifera together. It appears significant to me that some good winemakers are seeking new wine styles by putting these two together; it works. On the day, at Bockenheim, there were about a hundred wines to try, that were made from about 20 differing varieties. A few of these varieties were from breeding programmes worked on many years ago, Regent, Bronner and Johanniter for example, but there were also newer varieties, Sauvitage, Donauriesling, Blutenmuskateller.

Surprisingly there were about 15 examples of Cabernet Blanc, and a large number of Sauvignac as well. I shouldn't be surprised by the number of Cabernet Blanc wines available, as it is very widely planted. Indeed there are over 125 families and wine companies in this region alone that grow it. It was good to see a couple of examples of 'Orange' wine from this variety, and they worked well; a nice touch. The red wines wavered between a previously fairly common style of wine locally; probably a little high crop loading, but still very dark wines with lots of 'fruit forward' character. Sometimes a little high in acid so the tannin seems a bit raw. However there were obviously some talented cool climate winemakers there, and those who had influence in the vineyard. With a few wines ripened into the 13%, 14% or even 15% alcohol levels, a more balanced approach to skin extraction rates and a touch of

mellowing oak…the wines were a delight. Perhaps this is increasingly possible with resistant vines still retaining healthy and well functioning leaves until late in the autumn. Perhaps the clusters have a longer 'hang time' compared to some alarmingly tight clustered Vitis Vinifera examples. I have noticed over the years that it can take a while for people to come to terms with the Piwi characters that differ from V. Vinifera, but it was obvious from this occasion that there are many people who now know how to bring out the best. A lot of the white wines being almost indistinguishable from V. vinifera, or at least you might simply presume that the variety is new to you, perhaps a relatively obscure old variety.

However in terms of Piwi progress there are a lot of new varieties becoming increasingly available. Here, at the Freytag nursery, we have put out into the field nursery umpteen hundred thousand vines, and from about 200 differing combinations of variety, clone, and rootstock. Included in this are about two dozen new varieties, as selected for their unusually high sugars this previous autumn. A thought being that they may, one day, be suitable for the UK. Ongoing field trials and micro-vinification comes next. But the ever busy breeders are not sitting on their laurels yet. It is an unusually warm and early summer, so they have been here to the new variety 'Mutter Garten' in which this year’s

crossings are already forming on the vines. Starting in Spain they move northwards as the vine flowers are just opening out, and they now have moved onto the cooler airs of home town Swiss mountain vineyards. An unusually large nursery programme meant that I have been unable to assist this year in the breeding work, but I hope to visit Switzerland soon to try some of the latest new variety micro-vinifications. There is always much to talk about, and many ideas to share. Later in the summer I am hoping to return to Moravia in the Czech Republic, Velke Bilovice is the home town of the Nestarec family. Milan and Milan, father and son, have had a long standing friendship with the Freytag's <<

Sam Doncaster works for Volker and Marion Freytag, of Rebschule Freytag, Lachen-Speyerdorf, Neustadt an der Weinstrasse, Pfalz. ENVELOPE 33 A U G U S T 2 0 2 2 | V I N E YA R D

A VITICULTURIST 'S DIARY << for many years. It was through this contact that I worked a harvest there whilst Covid-19 was putting the brakes on other activity, elsewhere. Not so with the unstoppable Czechs. Just over 250 tonnes, hand harvest, something of a break in the middle...grim weather, but more varieties than I have fingers to count with. And they are to be part of a wine festival, a festival of 'Authentic' wines; wines true to their ideals, no compromise. Absolutely minimal chemical intervention in the wine making, natural ferments…naturally. Lots of skin macerating and blending whites and reds, all akin to the regional traditions of field blends, and with little more 'finishing' of a wine in the cellar... other than to let it settle. Bold, and if not that, brazen. There is a long history there of getting a sound winemaking training, with an old wine school and research station close by. There are amazing table grapes too and a creditable approach to vine breeding, with some people. All together an interesting combination of tradition, yet innovation, a sound knowledge of vines and wine, yet people are seeking to express their uniqueness whilst also creating a new wave of wine styles. Stimulating. I've just gotta go. "With the final field planting of this year’s young and grafted vines, I tidied up my corner of the workshop and drove back to the UK.


This was to be a combined holiday break, but also an opportunity to see what is happening in the UK, and to engage with some growers and wine makers. To facilitate this numerous sample wines were also packed to travel with. For any prospective tastings I always favour commercial examples of new varieties, because they accurately demonstrate both varieties and styles that are already being put to good use. As such there were Cabernet Jura Rose sparkling wines, and a similar Cabernet Blanc, with a 'Secco' from Scheurebe and Cabernet Blanc. There were also still whites from Rinot, Donaureisling, several Sauvignac wines, and a few Cabernet Blanc, one being a barrel ferment. In reds, only ones selected from known early ripening varieties seemed suitable; Pinotin, Cabaret Noir, and some differing Cabertin. I had written to Martin Vickers of Halfpenny Green Wines, a very central location and a company with many connections. Martin was happy that a Piwi tasting was to be held at his place; Thank you Martin! He contacted some people and I wrote to numerous others. Come the day however turnout was subdued. I don't know why it is that good new wines are so difficult to present to the UK wine industry, but that was the way it was. His team both enjoyed and learnt from the wines, as did a few others who had made the travelling effort. However, sadly, it was decided to

cancel a further tasting over Essex way as so little positive feedback was received. Travelling through or around the UK makes for a rather 'hit or miss' series of events to occur. Positively I was pleased to stumble upon a second year vineyard, just west of Stamford, in Lincolnshire. This was The Rutland Vineyard, (being just over the county line,) and they have ambitiously planted quite a sizeable block of Cabaret Noir. I will be watching this company closely now as I feel that this is going to be very interesting in years ahead. I heard that they wished that they had planted more Piwi; good people! We swapped a few differing wines and perhaps I might be able to hold a tasting there in times ahead, I hope so. Sadly the run down south to the ferry was during the weekend, so it was not possible to cross paths with Defined Wines, Canterbury. I've always found that Henry (Sugden) keeps an open mind and is quietly supportive of new ideas. So then the ferry was caught, and I went back to completely different thinking; on the other side of the road. Back in the UK later, another Essex based Piwi tasting... I hope. Perhaps a cellar team members position during harvest. Then the Vineyard & Winery Show in November. A busy, busy year in progressive times for "Whats new, what’s different and what is better!" Exciting times in viticulture.



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oy er

Budding fertility

Jo Cow d

Is this year’s potential yield already set – no matter how good conditions are during the growing season? One of the major components of yield is bud fertility and this is highly influenced by sunlight and temperature during formation in the previous growing season. Jo Cowderoy asks the experts how understanding bud fruitfulness can steer management practices to maximise quality and yield. Like many perennial plants, grapevine bud formation is a two-year process. Buds are initiated on the shoots in the first season, and these then produce shoots, and hopefully flowers, the next. Berries are a result of fruit set after flowering, so the number of flowers, or inflorescences, is key to vineyard crop yield. The bud, known as a compound bud, forms in the leaf axils. Photos: ©Vinescapes Ltd


The cells within the bud can develop into a tendril or inflorescence, in a process known as tissue differentiation and this is influenced by factors such as temperature and light, as well as availability of nutrients. There are three ‘buds’ within the compound bud – primary, secondary, and tertiary – but the primary and secondary are considered fruitful.

Yield components

Crop yield is a factor of flower number, berry number and berry size – but most importantly bud fruitfulness and this is already determined before the season gets underway. “Bud fruitfulness is a measure of the underlying cropping potential of the vineyard. In the absence of reasonable fruitfulness, all the other components contributing to yield amount

to very little impact,” explained Peter Hayes, Australia-based Viticulturist and Global Wine Industry Strategist, who has advised many UK vineyards over the years. “It’s generally considered that fruitfulness, that is the number of fruitful buds, contributes around 60% to variation in the final yield, with berry number 30% and berry size approximately 10%. “Understanding fruitfulness and how it can vary season to season is important for growers,” explained Joel Jorgensen, viticulturist, and Managing Director at Vinescapes. “If the previous season was cool or if the renewal zone was shaded, then bud fruitfulness is likely to be low – so already potential yields are restricted before the season starts,” he added. “In the case of low fruitfulness, achieving good crop yields is extremely difficult as the only way to then target good crops is to retain more shoots thus leading to poor canopy attributes such as shoot crowding and elevated disease risk,” commented Peter. “Poor fruitfulness, even with good fruit-set conditions shall often leave the vine ‘undercropped’ and likely to express considerable vigour in the absence of an adequate crop load; this can lead to further canopy shading, excessively long internodes, and continuing problems in generating good crop potential,” he added.

Shoot apex

Inflorescence (bunch) primordia

Leaf primordia ©Samantha Williams

> Dissected Vitis vinifera (L.) cv. Chardonnay bud (magnification x40) One way of assessing bud fruitfulness is by dissection of the dormant bud to reveal its potential number of clusters. “Provided that there is a number of years of data and the bud dissections are conducted properly, an assessment of bud fruitfulness, also known as bud fertility, will allow growers to see if bunch numbers and yield are likely to be higher or

lower than normal,” explained Dr Greg Dunn, Head of Wine at Plumpton College, a leading expert on yield and its components as this was his area of research when Associate Professor at the University of Melbourne, Australia. “Also, it can tell you which buds along the cane are less fertile and, hence, whether you may be able to get away with the cheaper option of spur-pruning without too much yield loss. Bud dissections will also allow you to detect bud eating mites and primary bud necrosis – a physiological disorder that can reduce grapevine yields. “Understanding which yield components are affecting yield the most – bunch number, berry numbers per bunch, berry size – will allow you to target the measures you collect to estimate yield and help you to understand how you might be able to manage yield,” added Greg.

Bud formation

The number of clusters for the year is set during the previous growing season and this is influenced by sunlight and heat, as well as the vines general health and nutrient status. “Cluster numbers vary from zero to about three, and buds that are developing in cool shady areas will have low cluster numbers,” commented Joel. “The development of clusters in the bud takes place around flowering, so it’s important to keep the renewal zone, the area for next year’s cane selection, open for maximum light and warmth – but making <<

Understanding fruitfulness and how it can vary season to season is important for growers 37 A U G U S T 2 0 2 2 | V I N E YA R D

BUDS << sure there is still enough leaf area for photosynthesis to provide the energy needed! Of course, events after bud burst, such as poor weather at flowering will affect yield, but an open renewal zone the previous year will at least help potential fruitfulness,” Joel added. “Key factors influencing fruitfulness are temperature and sunlight incidence on the newly forming node areas of shoots in the previous spring and summer,” explained Peter. “Vine function including adequate supply of carbohydrate from an effective canopy, along with a balanced allocation of sugars from the canopy to the newly forming buds is also important; in very vigorous vines, new buds can suffer as the rapidly growing shoots demand such supplies of energy,” he added.

Bud dissection

“I have long advocated the use of bud dissection to establish bud fruitfulness level and in the case of cane pruning, to define where buds are most fruitful,” commented Peter. “Bud dissection is a good way of getting an

early estimate of potential fruitfulness, to see the number of clusters forming,” agreed Joel. “You need to collect a representative sample of buds from the vineyard during the dormant season and the dissection process is tricky – it requires practice to identify the various structures, and the right equipment, but Vinescapes are looking at offering this service,” he added. “It’s a specialised skill and can be labour intensive. I would only advise it if the grower were committed to doing it properly and building up a reliable data set over a number of seasons. Many big companies in other wine regions around the world routinely dissect buds,” commented Greg.

Adapting vineyard management

With an understanding of bud fruitfulness and its influence on potential yield, management practices in the vineyard can be adapted. According to Peter Hayes: “Growers can apply a deal of targeted management effort to influence fruitfulness."

> Recording data using Sectormentor for assessing yield

Well exposed shoots, and adequate leaf area and vigour on replacement canes are essential; this is achieved by utilising suitable trellis and applying canopy management practices such as: ◆ Shoot thinning poorly placed and poorly fruitful shoots, allowing retained shoots better exposure and access to seasonal energy supply ◆ Leaf removal in the event of excessive shading; be wary in the event of hotter seasons or where row orientation or site aspect delivers excessive incoming radiation in the fruit zone ◆ Constrain vine vigour if excessive. This may entail reduction or elimination of Nitrogen fertilisation, use of devigorating, intervine or even undervine sward, use of extra ‘sacrificial’ canes early season to dissipate vigour, then remove in early-mid spring. These are some of the points highlighted by Peter Hayes.


“As long as grapevines are not severely water stressed or suffering from a nutrient disorder, temperature and light around flowering affect the initiation and differentiation of ‘bunches’ inside buds. In the UK these things will be optimised by leaf plucking in the bunch zone and judicious hedging. Care must be taken around flowering, however, as removing actively photosynthesizing leaves can reduce fruit set,” commented Greg. “Good light penetration into the bunch zone will increase the light and temperature that buds are exposed to. This will also reduce disease risk. However, it’s important to consider timing so as not to encourage secondary crop or reduce fruit set,” he added. “A knowledge of potential fruitfulness would suggest that pruning strategy should change according to, primarily, seasonal drivers from the previous year – and not simply follow a routine approach,” explained Peter. “For cane pruning, the conditions experienced along the shoot can vary widely as the cane and its buds are laid down in the previous season; for example, cool cloudy early season conditions can lead to the lower 5-8 buds being poorly fruitful, so short pruning will already be severely limiting of crop potential. If it was known that maybe buds 8-10 were more fruitful because of a warmer period in late spring/early summer, effort could be made to prune longer – maybe a longer unilateral cane, rather than short bilateral, retain extra buds via an arched cane or even to simply leave extra canes,” he added. Joel agreed: “If this was the case, I would leave more buds than usual during winter pruning and be mindful to select the best canes, as these are going to be more fruitful. It may be worth considering double guyot rather than single. However, if the previous year was good for bud development, then reducing the bud number at pruning may be necessary. “If excess buds are left at winter pruning, then shoot thinning can always be carried out if needed to avoid excess shading, or cluster thinning later in the season to avoid overcropping. “If there is a late spring frost and the primary shoots are damaged, then there is a possibility << of a small crop from the secondary buds.

One way of assessing bud fruitfulness is by dissection of buds collected during the dormant season 39

> Selection of well-matured and well-placed fruiting canes << Robust frost protection really helps, but as an insurance, I like to keep sacrificial canes where appropriate to retain a higher number of primary buds. This can deplete reserve energy so careful consideration must be given to nutrient status and the timing of sacrificial cane removal/tying down,” added Joel.

Cool and cloudy 2021

“Given that conditions across most of 2021 were cool and cloudy, it is inevitable that fruitfulness would be low,” commented Peter. “Nothing can really be done to recover yield potential at this stage as pruning decisions, overlaid on the low potential, have set the stage.

“However, for future management, such conditions should induce: ◆ a greater focus on canopy management ◆ targeted placement and selection of fruiting canes which were well exposed to heat and light in the previous season ◆ consideration of bud-dissection if a service is available ◆ at pruning, judicious selection of wellmatured and well-placed fruiting canes “I use the Sectormentor app to collect data and information for vineyard management and have linked it to our granular weather data from Sencrop or Trak365 to overlay real time growing degree days with grapevine phenology,” explained Joel. “I noticed that last

year’s accumulated growing degree days at flowering were lower than average – it was indeed a cool season. Observing the vineyards that we manage it is noticeable that there are fewer clusters per shoot than usual this year so yields would have been lower than average due to this reduced fruitfulness per bud left at pruning – thankfully we were forearmed and left extra buds to make up for it and have since thinned back the unfruitful shoots.” “We can manage some of the factors influencing fruitfulness such as keeping vines healthy, ensuring a good nutrient status, well managed healthy soil, adjusting crop levels, and also timing and extent of leaf removal - but sadly we can't control the weather!” Joel concluded.

> Care must be taken around flowering as removing actively photosynthesizing leaves can reduce fruit set



e tabl

In the UK, the majority of growers train their vines using the vertical shoot positioning, (VSP) system with most trellis systems having two or three pairs of moveable foliage wires. This method of training your canopy creates a designated fruit zone and encourages the vines to produce more fruit. As the growing season progresses, canopy management is required to keep the vines at optimum efficiency. The art of canopy management is best begun in winter whilst pruning. At Vine-Works, our preferred method is to drop the lower two pairs of wires to the lowest post tag, (or hook nail on wooden posts) and keep the third pair raised to the top tag. This allows you to catch shoots in a single action when you lift the lower pairs of wires. Wire lifting should take place when at least 80% of shoots are at the desired height. The third, (top) pair of wires are slackened and rotated down towards the shoots, tucking in all shoots before being hand-tensioned on moveable chains. In essence, tucking in/wire lifting is a simple, but crucial process: simply lift up all the shoots and catch them between the foliage wires to create a hedge shape. The fruit will grow around the fourth and fifth buds so when you raise your first wire, lift it above the fruiting zone. Tuck in and lift as necessary throughout the season. Once your wires have been lifted, there will still be a little slack in the system which means your shoots may hang out and snag on passing machinery. This is counteracted by the use of ‘c’ shape foliage clips. This will help with a consistent canopy and more uniform ripening of fruit whilst also ensuring that no foliage wires get wrapped around your trimmer blades. Foliage clips are particularly helpful in the third year of growth when vines ordinarily only have a few shoots coming from the crown area, not a full cane on the wire. With only a few shoots there is often a lot of slack in the foliage wires; clips tighten this slack. We recommend that foliage clips are placed centrally between the vines in the trellis bay, but not adjacent to the end post. Some growers use two clips per bay on lower wires and three per bay on top wires. Allow a minimum of one

Co ns

Foliage clips – securing your canopy

C her r y


clip per vine. As always, it is important to strike a balance between supporting the canopy, but not compacting it/restricting airflow. Placing too many foliage clips can lead to compaction of the canopy, making airflow more difficult and the risk of disease penetration higher. There are plenty of different manufacturers of foliage clips with reusable or biodegradable options available. The reusable versions require the collection of clips at pruning which is an additional pass through the vineyard. By our cost analysis, it’s more cost effective to use the biodegradable version. There are other versions that stay attached to wires, though these do get lost.

The wooden fibre clips, (pressed with pine resin) are easier to remove at pruning and are broken down with the following season. We recommend that these biodegradable clips are cut in half during pruning and allowed to degrade; a more efficient use of time than collecting reusable versions. At the same time, your wires can be lowered to their winter resting positions, setting you up for the following season. The aim of canopy management is to ensure your vines operate at optimum efficiency with a uniform and homogenous canopy. Raising your foliage wires, tucking in and securing the canopy with foliage clips is the way to achieve the best results.

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A changing, challenging landscape The changing landscape of English and Welsh wine.


The machinery range sold by Vitifruit Equipment, with most also available for hire: Vitifruit Equipment has been providing machinery solutions and customer service to the vineyard and fruit industries in the UK for more than 25 years. Started in 1995 by David Sayell who was joined by Richard Witt in 2010, their activity has expanded in line with the growth in the UK wine sector. Richard and David aim to help the customer to reduce production costs while increasing quality, yield and profitability with equipment that best suits their budget and specific location requirements. “We are always sourcing new technology and products appropriate << for viticulture and aim to provide a range of new machinery offering

> Left to right: David Sayell, Richard Witt and Han Rushanov

Tunnel recirculation sprayers

Traditional air assisted sprayers

Electrostatic sprayers

Weed strip herbicide sprayers

Under vine soil and weed cultivators, rollhacke, strimmers and mowers

PROVITIS Trimmers, De Leafers, Multi brush strimmer/ bud rubber, canopy liſting and tying in tool, pre pruner and cane pulling out machine

Trimmers and De Leafers Rotary mowers, flail mowers, prunings mulchers from Sauerburger, Fehrenbach and Voxx

Subsoilers, rotavators and power harrows with seed drill combination options Compost and manure spreaders; various makes

Battery powered cane tying down tools & secateurs

Manual tying down tool.

Fertiliser spreaders.


<< cutting edge technology for growers, so please look out for updates from us via email, on our website, on Facebook and Twitter,” said Richard. “In the early days I worked with a few vineyards in Kent and could see that they weren’t using appropriate equipment,” said David Sayell.“My local vineyard at Penshurst was using small farm or amenity equipment in the vines, and I could see that it was inefficient having seen what vineyards were doing in the Photos: ©Martin Apps, Countrywide Photographic


Mosel, Alsace and Champagne.” Growing up on the family farm, studying agriculture at Cirencester and Plumpton College then working as a farm contractor for a number of years David retains a practical outdoor work life and has also managed a small local vineyard for over 20 years. His experience and understanding of working with machinery in the field coupled with extensive research, visiting manufacturers on the continent, attending trade shows and building up strong

relationships with suppliers has helped David to provide specialist vineyard equipment, concentrating on reliability and usability. David said: “I wanted to find quality, reliable equipment which would do the job asked of it and wasn’t going to cause after sales problems with breakdowns and disgruntled customers.” While the viticulture machinery market has changed a lot since David started in equipment sales in 1995, his key principles remain the same and in 2010, David joined forces with <<


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VITIFRUIT EQUIPMENT << Richard Witt to establish Vitifruit Equipment and further expand the provision of quality equipment. The transition to Vitifruit Equipment helped to focus the business and with Richard looking after the day-to-day running of the company, David is able to concentrate on advising customers and identifying the right machinery for their needs. “We give a very personal touch with David dedicated to looking after customers,” said Richard Witt. “It is not just about selling, because ill-advised choices can actually make a job harder. If a machine doesn’t do the job it is needed for, you are back to square one. We provide meaningful advice and part of our service is to identify and supply the exact machine for the job in hand.” Taking specialist requirements and budgets into consideration, David has tried to find at least two suppliers for most machines at varying price points and always encourages customers to try the machines before they buy. David said: “We don’t sell tractors as we don’t have a big workshop, however if a vineyard asks which tractor is right for them I will talk through their requirements, the size of the vineyard and the budget. As modern equipment relies so much on oil power it often comes down to the hydraulics of the tractor and finding a model which is comfortable and usable.”



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spray - recycle - reuse 46 A U G U S T 2 0 2 2 | V I N E YA R D

SINCE 1836

Richard said: “We live in changing times and that affects vineyard operations. We have to alleviate labour issues. With the advent of Brexit, there are fewer workers from eastern Europe coming here. It has become a real issue finding the right people who have the know-how and practical experience and then retaining them! David said that the sector is seriously lacking experienced tractor drivers and this puts us at a real disadvantage compared to other tooled up vineyards abroad who can produce a bottle of wine so much cheaper due to their efficiency. If we are to compete on price we have to train people who are competent machine operators and pay them accordingly. Vitifruit Equipment has recently taken on Elihan ‘Han’ Rushanov who was with Chapel Down for five years as a principal tractor and machine operator and we have David Wood who looks after servicing, maintenance and repairs.” With so many new players coming into English and Welsh wine, Richard and David are conscious that many will not have the knowledge, let alone the experience of, agricultural machinery. So, there are the twin challenges of: getting the necessary equipment and then, arguably even more crucial these days, finding someone with the relevant experience to operate it. “These people are like gold dust!” << Said Richard.

Tomorrow’s tradition

Designer, manufacturer of viticultural equipement, arboricultural ...


100% Fardeench m Frame with EVO 4 + Valmatic


Distributed in UK. Vitifruit Equipment

Unit 3 Skitts Manor Farm, Moor Ln, Marsh Green TN8 5RA, United Kingdom Phone number +44 1732 866567

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Mission statement: To provide growers with machinery to better their productive potential, both in the quality of their wine but also their profitability << Crucial to Vitifruit’s business is both hiring and selling equipment. David said: ”By hiring, it enables potential purchasers to have a go, a chance to try the equipment in the field. “Much of the equipment we sell is for general vineyard maintenance but with the demand for more precision and record keeping, particularly with chemical use, the sales of higher specification sprayers has increased. Also more attention is being paid to the floor area under the vines in terms of weed control and soil care so we are very pleased with the results achieved over many years with the Boisselet equipment. An increase in activity with application of compost and manure means we now hire and


sell a big range of spreaders, particularly since the recent hike in fertiliser prices. David has been involved with WineGB/ Plumpton roadshows which he believes have been immensely useful in bringing growers together to chat and exchange knowledge and experience. He showed various Vine Trimmers and De Leafers to assist the presentations on canopy management. Discussions ensued on everything from the practicalities of growing vines, dealing with/avoiding frost, disease management, leaf count, cordon styles, bud rubbing, leaf canopy density etc. “The next few years should be seen as a challenge to bring the quality of UK wines up

to world class standards, by investing in top quality people and equipment. We are busier and busier, helping more and more people,” said David. Many vineyards are striving hard to increase their yield, tonnes per hectare, as well as the quality of grapes going into the winery. Attention to detail pays dividends concerning disease control, canopy management and under vine soil treatment. Machines go a long way to helping achieve the desired management objectives and the selection and use has become so much easier over the years as Vitifruit Equipment has listened to what growers want and responded by producing the kit.

Vitifruit Equipment Sales and Hire







 01732 866567 /vitifruitequipment 


Rob S

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Flower formation is a two-year cycle


Preventing sunburn

Hot, sunny summers may not be common in the UK, but when such conditions do occur, we sometimes hear talk of “Bacchus disorder”, where the exposed side of grapes turn brown and shrivel,

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So, for vines that were in full flower at the end of June, the period around late July will be the critical time that determines flower initiation for next year’s crop. Of course, growers have no control over what the weather brings from one month to the next, especially in the UK, where we are already asking a lot by growing vines on the northernmost edge of their geographic range. We can however stack the odds more in our favour, by ensuring canopies do not become overcrowded, thereby allowing good light penetration, and making sure vine nutrition is optimised throughout the season (both macro and micronutrients). Careful cane selection can also help, as cane vigour affects bud fertility - hence the common advice to select canes of pencil-sized diameter to lay down for next season. A strong, healthy plant that can capture and utilise sunlight efficiently is key to a successful crop this season and next.

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With some sites showing reduced flower initiation and bud viability this year, Hutchinsons agronomists Rob Saunders and Chris Cooper examine what’s going on. With flowering mostly complete and fruit now set, we are starting to build a clearer picture of what the coming grape harvest may hold. Data shows growing conditions throughout the June flowering period were measurably sunnier and warmer than last year, but despite this, poor flower initiation and disappointing bud viability has been seen at some vineyards, notably in Chardonnay and Bacchus, although on the whole, bunch sizes look very good. So what’s going on? The flowering process in vines is spread over two seasons, so the reduced flower numbers we are seeing in some situations now, is largely a consequence of the cloudy, wet and dull weather experienced between May and July last year, when parts of the south east recorded an inch of rain per week during that period. Fruitful buds start forming in leaf axils (where the leaf stalk meets the growing shoot) around a year before vines flower, when cells at the tip of developing tissue form primordia - the name given to the organ or tissue when at its first recognisable stage of development. Primordia will eventually develop into either an inflorescence or a tendril, depending on a range of factors, including the weather, the amount of photosynthate available to developing buds, and the vine’s nutritional status. The number of inflorescences within fruitful buds has largely been established once crops have reached véraison. Variations in temperature and light levels around four to six weeks after full flowering are thought to have a particular impact on the balance of the plant hormones gibberellin (GA) and cytokinin, which are the main regulators of flowering and flower initiation. Generally, high temperatures and light levels stimulate the hormones needed to form flowers for the following season, as well as benefitting photosynthesis and carbohydrate availability to the plant.


with no apparent sign of any fungal pathogen. The cause is often attributed to sunburn of young berries by strong ultraviolet light, which could potentially be a risk to any thin-skinned variety given the right conditions. There are differing opinions as to how the risks should be managed, so care is needed and it is worth discussing the options with your agronomist if sunburn is a concern. One strategy is to avoid de-leafing the side most exposed to the strongest midday sunlight until after the August bank holiday, by which time the sun’s energy will be declining. An alternative approach favoured by some, is to de-leaf and expose bunches immediately after flowering, allowing berries to build resistance to high UV levels as they develop. Either option may have its merits, but it is probably best to avoid any ‘halfway house’ as exposing young berries to strong sunlight in early August before skins have hardened will inevitably increase the risk of sunburn. If de-leafing had already started post-flowering, but practical issues delayed the work, it may be better to wait until the end of August to finish the job off, rather than exposing young berries while the sun is still relatively strong.


New laboratory equipment We are pleased to have received two important new pieces of laboratory equipment in the last month, a new High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) set-up and a new Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) machine. Our microbiology lecturer and laboratory manager James Clapham explains why these two pieces of equipment are important for our research and our students. HPLC allows us to separate individual components of wine and juice and accurately quantify them. This will enable students to engage in research with organic acids and polyphenolic compounds, looking at how these substances differ between climates, varietals, age and winery practices. Our new system features a quaternary pump for blending up to four different solvents, a diodearray detector (DAD) for access to spectral data for several wavelengths simultaneously, and an autosampler ensuring consistent sample injection. Our new thermal cycler allows us to differentiate between yeast species and strains at a genetic level using PCR. While this provides rigour to investigations where characterisation of yeasts is the main focus, it also enables us to survey the microflora of vineyards and wineries to understand how this may differ between regions and influence the final wine. This model can run 96 PCR reactions simultaneously for high throughput analysis and temperature gradient technology for reaction optimisation.

> Polymerase Chain Reaction machine

> James Clapham, Laboratory Manager in the Wine Division at Plumpton College


> High-Performance Liquid Chromatography set-up



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New additions


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Wine vinified with ZYMAFLORE® XAROM presents a more intense sensory normally used in the cellar.

This month we use these pages to explore the new additions available to winemakers,SENSORY their PROFILE properties, characteristics and results. Aromatic intensity





Balance on the palate


Aromatic complexity


Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast for wines with very high aromatic intensity. Selected Active Dry Yeast (SADY), non GMO, for oenological use. Suitable for the preparation of products intended for direct human consumption, in the scope of regulated use in oenology. Complies with Commission Regulation (EU) 2019/934.


Saccharomyces cerevisiae; yeast for wines Length SPECIFIC CHARACTERISTICS AND OENOLOGICAL PROPERTIES with veryfromhigh intensity. Strain resulting breedingaromatic allowing intense production of fermentation aromas (yellow fruit, strawberry, pineapple, boiled sweets, etc.). of neutral orActive aromatic grape varieties with ZYMALFORE® production of wines of great aromatic ◆Vinification Selected Dry Yeast (SADY),XAROM nonallows GMO, power that lasts over time. for oenological use. CHARACTERISTICS: AROMATIC CHARACTERISTICS: ◆FERMENTATION Suitable for the preparation of products • Very low production of volatile acidity. • Very intense and clean aromatic profile. Bitterness • High nitrogen requirement. • POF(-) strain: no cinnamate decarboxylase activity, intended for direct human consumption, in responsible for the formation of vinyl phenols that “mask” • Genetic ability to preserve malic acid during AF. aromas or result in heavy “pharmaceutical” or “gouache” • Fermentation temperature (optimum): 14-24°C the scope of regulated use in notes. oenology. (57- 75°F).* ◆* It isComplies with Commission Regulation (EU) possible to inoculate at 8-13°C (46-55°F), after cold settling; acclimatisation of the yeast to the temperature by successive additions of must is essential. 2019/934.

Red fruits

3 2







Specific characteristics and oenological properties


Citrus fruits


Wine vinified with ZYMAFLORE® XAROM presents a more intense sensory profile than a wine vinified with a control strain normally used in the cellar.


Floral Strain resulting from breeding allowing intense production of fermentation aromas Acidity/freshness (yellow fruit, strawberry, pineapple, boiled Sensory profile sweets, etc.). ZYMAFLORE® XarOm ZYMAFLORE® arOm Control Vinification of neutral or aromatic grape > Sensory profile: Tasting results by a Aromatic characteristics: varieties with ZYMAFLORE® XAROM allows the La préservation de la concentration en acide fumarique montre sa stabilité dans le temp panel of trained tasters. production of wines of great ◆ Very intense and clean aromatic profile. La préservation de la concentration en acide fumarique montre saaromatic stabilité dans le tempspower (10 semaines) lors d’une étude sur vin dépourvu d’activité fermentaire de la part de S. cerevisiae. (Rosé - Languedoc-Roussillon, 2021). (10 semaines) lors d’une étude sur vin dépourvu d’activité fermentaire de la part de S. cerev that lasts over time. ◆ POF(-) strain: no cinnamate decarboxylase Fermentation characteristics: activity, responsible for the formation of ◆ Very low production of volatile acidity. vinyl phenols that “mask” aromas or result in Wine vinified with ZYMAFLORE® XAROM ◆ High nitrogen requirement. heavy “pharmaceutical” ZYMAFLORE® OMEGALTor “gouache” notes. presents a more intense sensory profile than ◆ Genetic ability to preserve malic acid during AF. . * It is possible to inoculate at 8-13°C (46-55°F), after cold a wine vinified with a control strain normally ◆ Fermentation temperature (optimum): settling; acclimatisation of the yeast to the temperature used in the cellar. 14-24°C (57- 75°F).* by successive additions of must is essential. SENSORY PROFILE Aromatic intensity

Balance on the palate


Aromatic complexity

5 4


Red fruits

3 2 1




Tasting results by a panel of trained tasters. (Rosé Languedoc-Roussillon, 2021).


Citrus fruits








Experimental results



ZYMAFLORE® XarOm Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast selected for its abili‫﬚‬ to produce high intensi‫﬚‬ fermentation and amyl aromas.



recommended for the production

LT of aromatic wines, to boost the potential of the grapes ZYMAFLORE® OMEGA

or serve as a base for blending. This strain has the

. genetic ability to preserve malic acid during the

alcoholic fermentation. Its low production of volatile acidity and its POF (-) character allow for production LT ZYMAFLORE® OMEGA of wines with a clean, precise and intense aromatic profi le. .

ZYMAFLORE® OMEGALT yeast ZYMAFLORE® XarOm .Non-Saccharomyces of the species Lachancea thermotolerans for the BIOAcidification of wines (red, white and rosé).

Selected for its high capacity to produce L-lactic acid from fermentable sugars, ZYMAFLORE® OMEGALT brings freshness and restores . balance to wines. Its unique metabolism leads to a decrease in the pH and increase in the total acidity of wines accompanied by a slight reduction in alcohol content. trl Enhances the perception of acidity by favouring fresher organoleptic profiles, while facilitating microbiological stabilisation during ageing. To be used in coinoculation (simultaneous yeast additions) or in sequential inoculation with a Saccharomyces cerevisiae strain to complete the alcoholic fermentation. trl



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AROMATIC aSENSORY complex profile.CHARACTERISTICS: Volume and length on the palate complement e PROFILE - ZYMAFLORE® XORIGIN - RIESLING / SLOVENIE • Low production of SO2 and compounds that combine Complex and delicate aromatic profile. Aromatic complexity with SO2. • POF(-) strain: no cinnamate decarboxylase activity,

® ZYMAFLORE XORIGIN Low production of volatile acidity.







responsible for the formation of vinyl phenols that “mask” 5.1 aromas or result in heavy “pharmaceutical” or “gouache” 4.1 3.1 notes.

Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast for the production of well-balanced fine white wines, respecting the typical character of grape varieties and terroirs.

• Alcohol tolerance: up to yeast 15.5% vol.production of well-balanced Saccharomyces cerevisiae; for the Selected Active Dry Yeast (SADY), non GMO, for oenological use. Suitable for the preparation of products intended for direct human consumption, in the scope of regulated use in oenology. Complies with Commission Regulation (EU) 2019/934.

fine white wines, respecting the typical character varieties ZYMAFLORE® XarOm • Fermentation temperature (optimum): 14of-grape 22°C. and terroirs. SPECIFIC CHARACTERISTICS AND OENOLOGICAL PROPERTIES

• Low◆nitrogen requirement. Selected Active Dry Yeast (SADY), non GMO, for oenological use. A yeast resulting from mass selection and breeding, ZYMAFLORE® XORIGIN reveals notes of white-fleshed fruits to produce elegant wines with great aromatic clarity while respecting the typical character of the grape varieties. Wines

• •

with ZYMAFLORE® are characterised by mouthfeel and length, giving them balance.human ◆ produced Suitable for theXORIGIN preparation ofimproved products intended foroverall direct recommended for northern white grape varieties. Short Particularly lag phase. consumption, in the scope of regulated use in oenology. FERMENTATION CHARACTERISTICS: AROMATIC CHARACTERISTICS: Complies with Commissioncapacity. Regulation (EU) 2019/934. Very◆good fermentation • Low production of SO and compounds that combine Complex and delicate aromatic profile.

2.1 Intensity •Aromatic Depending on the grapes and the precursors they contain, persistence 1.1 it has the ability trl to reveal varietal aromas and esters.




with SO2.

• POF(-) strain: no cinnamate decarboxylase activity, responsible for the formation of vinyl phenols that “mask” aromas or result in heavy “pharmaceutical” or “gouache” notes.

Specific characteristics and ZYMAFLORE® OMEGALT oenological properties . • Low production of volatile acidity.

• Alcohol tolerance: up to 15.5% vol.

• Fermentation temperature (optimum): 14 - 22°C. • Low nitrogen requirement.

• Depending on the grapes and the precursors they contain, it has the ability to reveal varietal aromas and esters.

Nose-palate Very good resulting fermentation capacity. A• yeast from mass selection and breeding, ZYMAFLORE® XORIGIN Volume intensity balance revealsPROFILE notes of white-fleshed fruits to produce elegant wines with great SENSORY SENSORY PROFILE aromatic clarity while respecting the typical character of the grape varieties. Strain X ZYMAFORE® XORIGIN Tasting carried out by a trained panel under the reproducible conditions of sensory analysis. ® ZYMAFLORE® XORIGIN allows production of aromatic wines while respecting the typical of a grape variety with XORIGIN are character characterised by improved Wines produced with ZYMAFLORE SENSORY PROFILE - ZYMAFLORE XORIGIN - MÜLLER THURGAU / ALLEMAGNE aSENSORY complexPROFILE profile. Volume and length on the palate complement each other, resulting in balanced and elegant wines. ZYMAFLORE XORIGIN RIESLING / SLOVENIE Tastingmouthfeel carriedandout bygiving a trained panel under the reproducible conditions of sensory analysis. length, them overall balance. ZYMAFLORE® XORIGIN allows production of aromatic wines while respecting theZYMAFLORE® typical chara Riesling - Slovenia of a grape vari Particularly XORIGIN recommendedallows for northern white grape varieties. of a grape variety withrespecting a complex profile. and length on the palate complement each o ZYMAFLORE® production of aromatic wines while the Volume typical character of a grape variety with ® SENSORY PROFILE ZYMAFLORE XORIGIN MÜLLER THURGAU / ALLEM Fermentation characteristics: resulting in balanced and elegant wines. trl complement each other, resulting in balanced and elegant wines. aSENSORY complex profile. Volume and length oncombine the palate ® that FUMARIC with SO2./ SLOVENIE ◆ Low production- of SO2 and compounds PROFILE ZYMAFLORE XORIGIN - RIESLING ◆ Low production of volatile acidity. Varietal character Aromatic complexity ◆ Alcohol tolerance: up to 15.5% vol. 5 6.1 ◆ Fermentation temperature (optimum): 14-22°C. 4.5 Riesling - Slovenia Müller Thurgau - Germany 5.1 ◆ Low nitrogen requirement. 4 ◆ Short lag phase. 3.5 4.1 3 ◆ Very good fermentation capacity. 3.1 2.5 Aromatic Aromatic characteristics: 2.1 Length Aromatic 2 Intensity intensity Complex and delicate aromatic profile. persistence 1.5 1.1 ◆ POF(-) strain: no cinnamate decarboxylase activity, responsible for 1 0.1 “mask” aromas or result in heavy the formation of vinyl phenols that “pharmaceutical” or “gouache” notes. ◆ Depending on the grapes and the precursors they contain, it has the ability to reveal varietal aromas and esters. LT • Short lag phase.



Aromatic complexity

Varietal character


5 4.5 4 3.5 3 2.5 2 1.5 1


4.1 3.1 2.1

Aromatic persistence





Nose-palate intensity balance


Nose-palate balance




Aromatic intensity


Strain A

Strain B

XORIGIN allows production of aromatic wines while respecting the typical character ZYMAFLORE® XORIGIN allows production of aromatic wines while respecting theZYMAFLORE® typical character of a grape variety of a grape variety with a complex profile. Volume and length on the palate complement each other,with a complex profile. Volume and length on the palate complement each other, resulting in balanced and elegant wines. resulting in balanced and elegant wines.


Sensory profile . Volume

Nose-palate intensity balance Tasting carried out by a trained panel under the reproducible conditions

Nose-palate balance


of sensory analysis. Strain B Strain A ZYMAFORE® XORIGIN X ZYMAFORE® allowsXORIGIN production of aromatic Strain wines while ZYMAFLORE® XORIGIN ZYMAFLORE® arOm respecting the typical character of a grape variety with a complex profile. XORIGIN allows production of aromatic wines while respecting the typical ch YMAFLORE® XORIGIN allows production of aromatic wines while respecting theZYMAFLORE® typical character Volume and length on the palate complement each other, resulting in of a grape variety with a complexMüller Riesling Slovenia Thurgau Germany profile. Volume and-length on the palate complement eac f a grape variety with a complex profile. Volume and length on the palate complement each other, resulting in balanced and elegant wines. balanced and elegant wines.


resulting in balanced and elegant wines.

DESKTOP phone-alt 07805 081677 ENVELOPE




Pure fumaric acid for controlling the growth and activi‫ ﬚‬of the lactic acid bacteria responsible for malolactic fermentation in wine. Changes in the regulations and the authorisation of fumaric acid in winemaking now provide a new possibility for the control of lactic acid bacteria during post-fermentation phases. Use of FUMARICtrl on wine makes it possible to block the malolactic fermentation. It is also possible to stop an MLF in progress. The result of this practice is the preservation of malic acid as well as increased effectiveness of the SO2. Its ability to block MLF makes it an interesting ally in winemaking processes without added sulphites when MLF is not desired.


sweet Osweet



100% natural preparation of pure mannoproteins and vegetal polysaccharides specifically selected for colloid stabilisation of wines and to add finesse. Suitable for organic winemaking. Thanks to a specific purification process, the mannoproteins extracted from yeast cell walls retain their stabilisation properties. The association with vegetal polysaccharides improves their effectiveness, and helps preserve the organoleptic balance of the wine.

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Representing you Working in partnership with Vineyard magazine for a developing UK wine industry. WineGB is the national trade body representing the vine growers and winemakers of Great Britain from the largest producers to small hobbyists. Our members work together with the organisation to develop strategy, expertise and marketing opportunities for long-term, sustainable success.

facebook-f twitter INSTAGRAM linkedin-in

@winegb @Wine_GB @winegb @winegb

If you are interested in wine production in the UK find out more about WineGB and join us. Visit our website

Trade tasting The annual WineGB Trade and Press tasting will take place on Tuesday 6 September at the RHS Lindley Hall in London. It is the major event for the industry in the GB wine trade calendar, and is attended by top trade buyers, press, writers and influencers. This year, we will also be welcoming visiting buyers from Scandinavia. The tasting will feature individual exhibitor stands, including some producers participating for the first time; stands representing regional vineyard associations, featuring smaller commercial producers and

> The WineGB Trade Tasting will take place on 6 September


Photo: Tom Gold Photography

regional tourism initiatives; free-pour focus tables to highlight some of the styles now produced in Britain, including the trophy winners from the WineGB Awards and a range of SWGB-accredited wines; and focused masterclasses held in a separate room. If you would like to exhibit, but have not yet expressed interest, please contact Angelina Howe on Registration for bona fide members of the wine trade and press is now open. Please visit the dedicated page on the WineGB website to sign up.

> This year’s WineGB Awards judging took place at Exton Park in Hampshire

WineGB Awards The results are in! 2022 saw the highest number of entries to the WineGB Awards; a total of 326 wines (172 still and 154 sparkling) with 11 new producers signing up for the first time. The Innovation category featured many different styles, demonstrating the dynamism of the sector. Three Choirs Vineyard in Gloucestershire was awarded Gold for its newly launched Amber (orange) wine, while two medals were given to newcomer and first-time entrant Ark Wines in Suffolk for its Ripasso method (drying grapes to concentrate the sugars), unfiltered and unfined Bacchus. A Col Fondo wine (which translates from Italian to “with the bottom,” meaning that sediment or lees are present) from Vagabond Wines in London also picked up a medal. All the Gold-medal-winning sparkling wines were from classic varieties (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier), with both large and small wineries being successful. Notable successes among smaller producers included Cobble Hill in Norfolk (a 3.6ha vineyard near Burnham Market); London Cru (an urban winery in Fulham, London), and Artelium, a newcomer to the English wine scene in Sussex.

Chardonnay triumphed in the still wine category, scooping four of the nine Gold medals. Pinot Noir also showed well with 17 medals, two of them Gold. In Wales, two Gold medals were awarded for Chardonnay and one for Pinot Noir. There were also two Gold medals given to wines made from Bacchus. The variety earned the highest proportion of medals overall, with 24% of all the medals awarded in the still wine category. The two Gold medals went to one of the largest producers, Chapel Down in Kent, and to one of the smallest, Lily Farm Vineyard in Devon. Sussex and Kent dominated the medal tables with 61 and 60 medals respectively. Other notable county wins were Hampshire (19 medals) Devon (15), Gloucestershire (15), Somerset (10), Cornwall (9), Surrey (9), Greater London (9), Norfolk (9), Dorset (8), Suffolk (8) and Essex (8). This year’s medal winners were also showcased at the WineGB Awards Lunch, held at the Drapers’ Hall in London, and at the WineGB One Day Wine School, an event targeting the on-trade community, which took place at the WSET School on Bermondsey Street. The full results list is available in PDF format or on a searchable table on the WineGB website.

WineGB members are eligible for a free consultation for producing wine estate habitat maps and conservation reports, as well as an initial discussion on potential natural capital income streams from carbon sequestration and biodiversity net gain, provided by Mapman.


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The most reliable and comfortable sprayers on the market VERMOREL























SAV EN FRANCE For all orders of Laser Industrie products please contact our UK wholesale Spindrift Sprayers Ltd. Tel – 01995 600001 Email –












Measuring up to knapsack calibration Correctly calibrating liquid spray applications is a keystone of effective spraying. Doing it right, whether weeding or feeding, is critical to ensure operators deliver concentrations appropriate for the task in hand. Giving groundscare operators and managers the benefit of his considerable experience and knowledge in July was training company boss Martin Sampson, who revealed the secrets of correct calibration. Approved by leading industry awarding body Lantra, Martin Sampson heads up Grounds Training at a time of soaring demand for spraying qualifications. "Estate managers, local authorities, schools, colleges and companies are more aware of the importance of training now," he said. "If you are spraying, qualifications such as PA1 and PA6 are legal requirements but increasingly we're seeing organisations wanting to upskill staff to give them the flexibility to spray in house, instead of using contractors." Martin's 45-minute fast-track presentation was "a slice through how to calibrate, why we need it, what can go wrong if we don't calibrate regularly and the importance of well-maintained kit". Jointly presenting with colleague Geraint Jenkins, Martin also covered correct choice of sprayer nozzles and revealed his own method of turning calibration from a maths puzzle to just 20 minutes' work. Grounds Training delivers a full suite of Lantraapproved grounds and sports turf management qualifications as well as Lantra customised provision courses that cover line marking, natural and synthetic turf maintenance and maintenance and management of wildflower meadows, ponds and wetlands.

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On knapsack training modules, Martin also focused on ergonomic aspects of spraying to reduce operator body stresses and strains – using a Berthoud Vermorel Pro Comfort 2000 demo unit. "From a training aspect, the sprayer is simple to use and to explain various points about spraying, which include operator comfort. The Vermorel's back frame and straps distribute the weight of the knapsack and contents in a way that balances the forces on the body. The extendable lance is also helpful for illustrating how to spray safely near water; an increasingly popular course." Berthoud knapsack sprayers are a brand within the Hozelock-Exel suite of professional sprayers that also includes Cooper Pegler and Laser Industrie.

> Martin Sampson

Photo: Jake Hilder




*Terms and conditions apply.

In stock now, the Boomer range of tractors from 24hp to 57hp across 6 models Micheldever SO21 3DN Tel: 01962 794100

East Ilsley RG20 7DJ Tel: 01635 281222

Horsham RH12 3PW Tel: 01403 790777

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Avon Works, Cranbrook, TN17 2PT • 01580 712200 • • A U G U S T 2 0 2 2 | V I N E YA R D

vid Sayell & a D

c ha Ri

A clean sweep

rd Witt

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The Provitis Multi Brush SRBH 22 both bud rubs and weed strims. The two rotating brush heads work either side of the canopy overlapping in the centre to provide a clean sweep. The Multi Brush is just another tool which can be fitted to the Provitis mast in the same way as the trimmer, deleafer, pre pruner etc. At the front of each brush is a bar which touches the vine stem and gently pushes the head away with a return spring bringing the head back to the original position. The two heads can be moved laterally away from each other to allow a wider passageway around the vines and also the over row head can be adjusted for height, compared to the tractor side head, should

the ground be uneven. A simple in cab hand control allows the operator to infinitely adjust the rotational speed of the straps as it is necessary to slow down when bud rubbing but speed up when strimming. The bar in front of the straps is adjusted out when strimming so that the straps don't touch the vine stems but is retracted when bud rubbing in order that the straps do touch the stem and knock off the buds. The machine is available for sale or hire from Vitifruit Equipment but the tractor must be 60hp or more and the vines should be at least four years old with sturdy vertical trunks.

Utility vehicles, compact tractors, fertiliser spreaders, sprayers and much more!

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The Finest Equipment & Support Itasca Wines Ltd are delighted to introduce Itasca Technical Services Itasca Technical Services providing the English and Welsh Wine Industry with the product choices and after sales service that our developing market demands. • Top European Manufacturing Partners • Tanks, Processing, Press, Temperature Control, Pumps, Filters, Bottling • Full Winery Fit Outs • Engineering After Sales Service • Sales of Consumables • Laboratory Equipment Supplies

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Contact us & find out more Email: Phone John Simmons 01252 279834 | Mobile 07788 561464 Web:

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