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   February 2016                        Common Ground; Innovative Research                  NGWI.ORG

In This Issue

Calendar of Events

Texas Wine & Grape Growers Association Annual Conference
February 18-20, 2016
Frisco, Texas

Oregon Wine Symposium
February 23-24, 2016
Portland, OR

Michigan Grape & Wine Conference
February 24-26, 2016
Kalamazoo, MI

March 1-3, 2016
Winchester, VA

Eastern Winery Exposition
March 9-11, 2016
Lancaster, PA

2016 ASEV National Conference
June 27 - July 1, 2016
Monterey, CA

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The National Grape and Wine Initiative focuses on research and extension to strengthen the US grape and grape product industries in partnership with academics and government. Grapes are the nation's leading specialty crop and all industry segments including raisin, juice, fresh grape and wine created the NGWI coalition to drive research for maximum productivity, sustainability and competitiveness. NGWI aims to lead the world in consumer value and quality.  

NGWI Elects 2016 Officers to the Board of Directors  

The National Grape & Wine Initiative (NGWI) announced its new leadership team for 2016 at the its annual meeting held January 25th. By unanimous vote of NGWI members, John Aguirre, President of the California Association of Winegrape Growers (CAWG), was re-elected as chair of NGWI. NGWI also announced the following elected officers for 2016: Craig Bardwell of the National Grape Cooperative/Welch's as vice chair, Peter Hofherr of Missouri's St. James Winery as secretary-treasurer and Rick Stark of Sun-Maid Growers of California as past chair. In addition to the election of Board members, a new NGWI member, Jason Smith (Paraiso Vineyards) was elected to fill a vacant At Large position on the board of directors.

NGWI Chair John Aguirre stated, "I'm excited about the future of NGWI. Last year USDA committed $6 million in funding for a high priority research project to develop sensor and mechanization technology to measure crop load and assess vine canopy with real time imaging. Led by Drs. Terry Bates of Cornell University and Stephen Nuske of Carnegie Mellon University, the research promises to deliver precision agriculture tools to grape growers across the country."

Aguirre continued, "In addition, we are in the midst of a search for a new NGWI president which I expect will result in the hire of very capable and energetic leadership."
National Viticulture and Enology Extension Leadership Conference 2016 
The National Viticulture and Enology Extension Leadership Conference (NVEELC) is a professional development gathering of wine, table, and raisin grape extensionists working within and outside of Cooperative Extension. Convened every year, one purpose of NVEELC is to help viticulture and enology extension professionals stay apprised of industry challenges in other regions and states. The 2016 conference for Extension Viticulturists and Enologists will be held March 1 - 3, 2016 in Winchester, Virginia.
If you are planning on attending please RSVP to Tremain Hatch ( and include your travel plans. Note: Dulles Airport (IAD) is the closest major airport (~1 hour away). A Google group will aid in organizing transportation to and from the airport. Below are meeting details.   
Meeting location:
Alson H Smith, Agricultural Research and Extension Center (AREC)
595 Laurel Grove Road
George Washington Hotel
Downtown Winchester ~20 minutes from AREC
103 E. Piccadilly St.
Winchester VA 22601
Reservations: Call 540-678-4700 Room block is listed under NVEELC (rate $89 per night)
Cutoff for the room block is 16 February 2016
$200 - Please submit a check payable to the Virginia Tech Foundation and send to:
Tremain Hatch
595 Laurel Grove Rd.
Winchester VA 22602

Meeting Agenda:
Tuesday, March 1st
Program begins at 1:00 pm
   SCRI project reports
   New Extension ASEV Journal

Wednesday, March 2nd
Program begins at 8:30 am
   State Reports
   Professional development training

Thursday, March 3rd
   Vineyard tour of Northern Virginia
   Ends at Dulles airport 4:00 pm