Advanced viticulture and enology training workshop slated May 7Mon, 28 Apr 2014 09:50:21 CDT
By Trisha Gedon
For more than a dozen years, Oklahoma State University has offered a Grape Management Course to those individuals who have an established vineyard, or to those who are just getting into the industry.
Due to the popularity of the course, grape growers in the area now have a chance to expand their knowledge by attending the first in a series of educational opportunities called the Advanced Viticulture and Enology Training Workshops.
Slated May 7 from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Cimarron Valley Research Station near Perkins, the workshop will feature Keith Striegler of Flintridge Wine Growing Services. He will give an overview of new virus problems and availability of clean grapevine planting materials, as well as discuss vine balance and balanced cropping of grapevines.
The workshop is free, but participants are asked to register by calling Stephanie Larimer at 405-744-5404
Becky Carroll, OSU Cooperative Extension assistant specialist, fruit crops and pecans, said the grape industry has seen some ups and downs over the last several years.
"There are various issues and concerns in the grape industry, including the economy and even the weather," Carroll said. "Although we aren't seeing the rapid growth in wineries and acreage of grapes planted compared to a number of years ago, we're seeing steady improvements in grape growing and wine making expertise. Oklahoma currently has about 600 acres dedicated to the grape industry."
Because of these improvements, Carroll said she is excited to see these advanced workshops available to grape growers. She said this new workshop will pick up where the Grape Management Course ended.
"We don't have a great many advanced training opportunities in the state, but thanks to a grant from the Department of Commerce Viticulture and Enology Fund, we are now able to offer grape growers an opportunity to enhance their knowledge. We have been able to network with specialists from other institutions and industry professionals who will share new and up-to-date educational programs for these more advanced growers," she said. "In addition, the workshop will provide them with better tools to manage their business, and thereby help to ensure the industry's sustained profitability and enhance the consistence and quality of Oklahoma wines."
Other advanced workshops will take place at a later date.
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