Grape and wine research and development reached a tipping point in the late 1990s – faults and taints had been systematically researched, understood and often eliminated through better practices and mitigation strategies.
The new paradigm is to find ways to add value to wine quality, rather than aiming to eliminate factors that subtract value.
This project builds on existing grapevine genome sequencing studies to enable informed decisions on clonal breeding programs and in-the-field vineyard management such as matching clones to site.
Rather than considering a range of different cultivars and conducting comparative genome studies (as is the case for all active grapevine sequencing projects), this project targets a single cultivar, Chardonnay, and will sequence the 10 most common clones to allow a comparative genome study.
The project will provide a comprehensive dataset for one common cultivar that will allow breeders and practitioners to understand the genetic basis for the observed phenotypic differences between clones.
The project is led by Dr Daniel Johnson from the Australian Wine Research Institute (AWRI) in partnership with its Canadian counterparts at Genome British Columbia (GBC). The project is being jointly funded by GBC and will provide significant industry benefits to both Australia and Canada given the importance of chardonnay crops for both countries.