Niagara wineries in for banner year, says St Catharines university research

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Published August 30, 2021 at 5:04 pm

Niagara Region’s 60-plus wineries are in for an excellent season, says a program head at Brock University in St Catharines.

At the university’s Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute (CCOVI), they annually conduct a  reharvest Monitoring Program to support Niagara’s grape growers and winemakers as they prepare for the upcoming vintage.

“The weather from the beginning of grape maturation to harvest is going to be really important to determine the quality of the vintage, but I think we have a high potential for this year,” Jim Willwerth, the head of the program, told the on campus newspaper, the Brock News.

He added sparkling wine grapes and some of the early red hybrids should be ready for harvest toward the end of this week, with early data pointing to this being another excellent year for Niagara wines.

“Based on the historical data and what we’re already seeing with respect to the amount of heat units and growing degree days, and if we have the same wonderful weather in September and October as we did in 2020, we’re right on track to have another banner year.”

The program has been tracking the progress of Niagara’s grapes at four sites across the Niagara Peninsula every year since 2010.

(Photo of CCOVI student Lisa Dowling courtesy of Brock University)

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