This document defines the strategic plan to carry forward the world-leading viticulture and enology research program for Washington’s wine industry from fiscal year 2020 (beginning July 2019) through fiscal year 2023 (ending June 2023). It replaces and builds upon the accomplishments of the Strategic Research Plan for the Washington Wine Industry approved by the Washington State Wine Commission Board in June 2015.
Washington’s wine research program was born nearly 60 years ago when Washington State University scientists Drs. Walter Clore and Chas Nagel saw potential for the state to become a premium wine region. Clore collaborated with growers to plant wine grape trials throughout the state and Nagel took the fruit to make research wines. This long-standing research partnership between the industry and WSU has resulted in game-changing research that has helped the industry conserve water, reduce pesticide use and improve wine quality. Today, research remains the backbone of a more than $6 billion industry made up of 58,000 acres of wine grapes and 970 wineries. The Washington wine industry provided $7.4 million and partnered with numerous contributors to build the $24 million Wine Science Center at WSU’s Tri-Cities campus, which opened in 2015. The Center is one of the most technologically advanced teaching and wine research facilities in the world and supports Washington’s entire wine industry as it continues to grow at a breakneck pace.
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