Ever wondered about the utilisation of valuable remnants from the wine industry to revolutionise ceramics? A groundbreaking study published recently has opened the door to a new era in ceramic production, exploring the wine industry surplus in an unexpected and astonishing way! In this exciting study, researchers investigated the potential of incorporating grape skins into red ceramics to assess their impact on the physical and mechanical properties of the clayey body. Five different compositions were prepared, each with varying percentages of biomass incorporation:0, 2.5, 5, 7.5, and 10%. The specimens, crafted through vacuum extrusion in a laboratory extruder, were subjected to meticulous tests and analyses encompassing chemical, mineralogical, thermal, physical, morphological, and microscopic examinations of the clayey raw materials. This innovative approach not only contributes to sustainable practices by recycling wine industry by-products but also holds the promise of reshaping the future of ceramic production. By harnessing the potential of grape skins, we are not just creating ceramics; we are crafting greener, more sustainable tomorrow. Cheers to a future where the art of winemaking and ceramic craftsmanship intertwine, paving the way for a more eco-friendly and innovative world.
In the vineyard, yeast communities impact the ripening and fermentation of grapes and are influenced by geographical location, climate, and soil characteristics. Despite the great advancement in our knowledge of the vineyard mycobiota, a key step of the process leading to the definition of the vineyard yeast community is still poorly understood: if geography, climate, and soil influence the mycobiota, potentially through selection, where do the yeast originate from, and how can they reach the vineyard? In this perspective, it is currently acknowledged that forests host several yeast species and that insects, particularly social wasps, can vector and maintain the yeasts known to populate the vineyard. Alas, the conveyance, fostered by insects, of yeasts from the forest to the vineyard has not been proven yet. In this study, we aimed to assess the existence of links between a potential natural source of yeasts (woods), the vectors (social wasps), and the composition of the vineyard mycobiota.
It is now widely accepted that climate change is having a profound impact on the weather systems around the world. These, in turn, have a considerable effect on two important elements of the Tuscan economy: wine production and tourism. This case study sought to explore the relationship between the perception of Tuscan wine-producing agritourism owners of the potentially abstract notion of climate change and their concrete experiences as entrepreneurs. While recognizing the difficulties they face from climate change as viticulturists, as agrotourism owners they welcome the longer seasons which enable them to open in the formerly barren shoulder seasons but struggle with last-minute cancellations due to unpredictable weather in the area.
The present multidisciplinary study aimed at investigating the impact of water deficit, defoliation, and crop thinning on Solaris’ plant and fruit development as well as on the bulk metabolic composition of Solaris must and wines as measured by FT-IR and 1H NMR. Overall, the results show that, from an agronomical point of view, Solaris has a remarkable ability to tolerate and recover from water stress.
The vector-borne bacterium Xylella fastidiosa is responsible for Pierce’s disease (PD), a lethal grapevine disease that originated in the Americas. The international plant trade is expanding the geographic range of this pathogen, posing a new threat to viticulture worldwide. To assess the potential incidence of PD, the authors of this post built a dynamic epidemiological model based on the response of 36 grapevine varieties to the pathogen in inoculation assays and on the vectors’ distribution when this information is available.
Agrobiodiversity is a promising nature-based solution in the pursuit of sustainable agriculture. In wine-growing systems, commercial pressure and varietal regulations have narrowed agrobiodiversity in vineyards despite higher diversity being an important buffer against the effects of climate change. If drivers of grape diversity change are well-understood at national to global scales, little is known about the local, past or anticipated trajectories that drive agrobiodiversity dynamics depending on growers’ cultural values, practices and choices. We combined quantitative agricultural census data and qualitative ethnographic approaches to characterise changes in the diversity of grape varieties from 1960 to 2020 at the communal and vineyard levels in a French wine-growing region, and to decipher the drivers of change
When talking about environmental and sustainability topics, the wine sector plays a fundamental role ensuring that wine remains not only economically but also environmentally sustainable, hence the importance of conducting analyses to measure the impact of food production through Life Cycle Assessment tool.
Fungal diseases of grapevine pose great challenges for global viticulture and require massive plant protection measures. Plant cells are able to sense chitin, a central component of fungal cell walls and respond by activation of basal defence. In this study the authors mapped early defence responses evoked by chitosan, a chitin fragment able to bind to chitin receptors. They found an activation of calcium influx, monitored by extracellular alkalinisation due to a co-transport of protons, remodelling of actin (but not of microtubules), and the activation of transcripts for phytoalexin synthesis, jasmonate-signalling, salicylate signalling, and chitinase. Interestingly, Gadolinium, an inhibitor of calcium influx, can inhibit extracellular alkalinisation in response to chitosan, while the induction of the phytoalexin synthesis transcripts was specifically promoted. In contrast, both DMSO and benzyl alcohol, compounds known to modulate membrane fluidity, partially inhibited the transcript responses to chitosan.
Each year, 20 million tons of wine by-products are generated, corresponding to 30% of the total quantity of vinified grapes. Wine by-products are a source of healthy bioactive molecules, such as polyphenols and other molecules (pigments, fibers, minerals, etc.). The abundance of bioactive compounds assures a promising future for nutritional foodstuff production. Wine by-products can be used to fortify aromatized waters and infusions, bread, pasta, dairy products, alcohol, sugary beverages, and processed foods. These innovative products are part of the Mediterranean Diet and are of great interest to both human and environmental health. Read more that http://science-and-wine.com/
The main aim of the study summarized in this post was to perform a combined life cycle assessment and life cycle costing of the most used wine packaging systems in Italy. Packaging plays a key role in food and beverage production and supply chain, but the increasing volume of packaging used causes many environmental concerns. The wine sector is no exception, especially in Italy that is the largest producer in the world. From both the environmental and economical point of views, aseptic cartons and bag-in-box systems were the most sustainable alternatives, while the glass systems had the worst global performances due to the high weight and consequent huge energy consumption during bottle production. The size of the containers was the key factor that most affected the results both in environmental and economic terms.