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Wine, Water and California

In San Joaquin Valley, California, researchers are investigating the benefits of using machines to manage growth and production of wine grape vines.

Kaan Kurtural, a University of California Cooperative Extension viticulture specialist, reports mechanized practices account for about 45 percent of the pre-pruning and 17 percent of the precision pruning done in valley vineyards, while 45 percent of the leaf removal work and 7 percent of shoot thinning is done mechanically.

The study identifies ways to reduce costs in wine grape production in a region that sees relatively small profit margins. The research trial, which ran from 2013 through 2015, was conducted in an 80-acre section of a commercial Zinfandel vineyard in Kern County.

Read more about California wine and water.

Want to read about more impacts like this? Check out Fresh from the Field, a weekly bulletin showcasing transformative impacts made by grantees funded by NIFA.

Farm Bill Priority Areas
Plant health, production, and products;
Agriculture systems and technology;
Agriculture economics and rural communities
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