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Graphic element Research > Growth > Research projects > Previous projects > Agriculture and Food > Microbially and chemically inactive wine and champagne cork stoppers
Graphic element Microbially and chemically inactive wine and champagne cork stoppers
     
 
A newly developed system uses electromagnetic irradiation to control the development of micro-organisms and to reduce chemical contamination of wine by cork stoppers.
 

There is growing concern within the wine industry about the possible flavour-damaging microbial and chemical properties of cork stoppers. About 1-5% of bottled wine is cork tainted and cork stoppers are increasingly being replaced by synthetic substitutes, most of which are produced in the US. Still, buyers continue to associate natural cork with quality wines and even suppliers of fairly inexpensive wines hesitate to abandon cork for fear of consumer rejection.

This project was aimed at solving the major problems of traditional cork production. A newly developed system uses electromagnetic irradiation to control the development of micro-organisms, to reduce the introduction of potentially contaminating chemicals and for the controlled drying of cork materials.

The new process is now being tested in field trials at a number of internationally known wineries. The co-ordinator is organising the dissemination of the results to wine producers all over the world through a series of visits and presentations and has been invited to act as adviser on the introduction of a new European standard covering the production of cork stoppers.

Cordis RCN: 42908
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