Network continues the fight for Europe's vineyards
An EU-funded network that helps winegrowers protect grapevines from deadly diseases continues to expand its influence. Ongoing interest in the network's knowledge database as well as new projects and collaborations are helping farmers, trainers and advisors keep Europe's wine industry in good health.
© IFV Sud-ouest, 2017
Updated on 27 January 2020
Wine growers and researchers are sharing information from the WINETWORK project on how to prevent and limit two threats to grapevines grapevine trunk disease (GTD) and flavescence dorée.
Information is found in the project websites knowledge reservoir as research documents and factsheets for advisors, researchers and trainers and as short videos aimed at farmers.
The material is provided in Croatian, English, French, German, Hungarian, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish, so that it reaches users in major wine-growing regions in Europe. There has been a lot of interest in our results, says project coordinator Eric Serrano from the Institut Français de la Vigne et du Vin in France.
In June 2018 alone there were more than 75 000 views of the videos, with the most popular being those on GTD, according to Serrano. Meanwhile in 2017, the year the project ended, the knowledge reservoir averaged 600 users a month, mostly from Italy, Spain and Croatia. That is a great result for a site without a lot of new content, he says.
Speeding up solutions
Networking is another important legacy. To fight these diseases efficiently, you need organisation on the ground, Serrano explains.
Regional, national and international channels, such as Frances Action Plan Against Declining Vineyards and the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV), continue to disseminate WINETWORKs results. WINETWORK participants have also taken part in national and regional events and awards such as the EU Rural Innovation Contest. At the EU level, the agricultural European Innovation Partnership (EIP-AGRI) is extending the projects research, for example in EVID, an EIP-AGRI Operational Group in Spain.
WINETWORK continues to influence training and research, too. Our documents are being used in agricultural schools and lectures in Germany, Serrano says. The Rhineland-Palatinate region, home of the wine-producing Moselle Valley, and the Volkswagen Foundation are funding projects such as NanoProtect to build on WINETWORKs results,. Finally, in Southwest France, winegrowers are testing GTD-control methods from the knowledge reservoir.
We are giving countries knowledge so that they can go faster to solutions, Serrano says.