Scandinavia to Host Grapegrowing Conference

Triennial VitiNord event will focus on cool/cold-climate viticulture and winemaking

by Linda Jones McKee
wine vineyard grapes cool climate conference cold
Denmark and Sweden have seen the grapegrowing sector explode in recent years.

Copenhagen, Denmark/Malmö, Sweden—Scandinavia is not a place where images of vineyards and wineries come to mind. That is not surprising, as commercial viticulture has only been allowed in both Denmark and Sweden since the year 2000. By 2015 there were 100 commercial grapegrowers in Denmark, with wineries located primarily in the fruit-growing areas along the coastlines and the islands. Sweden now has approximately 50 commercial vineyards, most of which are in the coastal areas of southern Sweden and on the Baltic islands of Öland and Gotland.

This summer, the fledgling grape and wine industry in Denmark and Sweden will host the fifth VitiNord International Viticulture and Enology Conference from July 30 to Aug. 3 in Malmö, Sweden, and Copenhagen, Denmark. The joint conference is possible because the Øresund Bridge, opened in 2000, now connects Malmö and Copenhagen across the Øresund strait of the Baltic Sea.

The goal of the VitiNord conference is to promote the advancement of viticulture and enology in northern environments characterized by cool or short summers and/or cold winters. The program focuses on research and practices being used in northern winegrowing regions and features sessions on new technologies and innovative winemaking techniques for grapes grown in cool and cold climates.

The conference will begin July 30 with welcome ceremonies and a tasting of Swedish wines at the Clarion Hotel & Congress Malmö Live, the conference hotel in Malmö, Sweden. The keynote speaker on the first full conference day, July 31, will be Dr. Gregory Jones, director of the Center for Wine Education and professor of environmental studies at Linfield College in McMinnville, Ore. As a research climatologist who specializes in the climatology of viticulture, Jones will discuss how climate variation influences vine growth, wine production and the quality of wine produced.

Jones’ address on climate and climate change will be followed by two tracks of talks focusing on cultivars and rootstocks, cultivation management, pest management, weed control, application technology, business models and wine tourism. The day will conclude with a banquet at Malmö Rådhus. The Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences in Alnarp will be the hosts for this conference day.

On Aug. 1, attendees will visit vineyards in Sweden as guests of the Swedish Wine Association. The conference will then move across the Øresund Bridge to Copenhagen, Denmark, and relocate in the Comfort Hotel (Vesterbro). A tasting of Danish wines at Copenhagen University Taastrup will conclude the day’s events.

Conference sessions on Aug. 2 will be hosted by the Copenhagen University in Frederiksberg. The main themes will include analytical methods, fermentation strategies for cold-climate wines, yeast types and bacteria, sensory aspects and wine styles in cold climate and in Nordic countries. The final conference day will feature a vineyard excursion in Denmark, hosted by the Danish Wine Association.

For more conference information and to register, go to vitinord2018.org. Hotel rooms have been pre-booked in Malmö for July 27-31 and in Copenhagen for Aug. 1-5. Information on conference and hotel rates is available, including a site for calculating currency exchange rates. Questions about the program may be sent to info@vitinord2018.org, and queries about registration and accommodations to registration@vitinord2018.org. The conference registration fee increases May 15, and both conference rate and hotel rooms will be available until June 25, 2018 (hotel rooms are on a first-come, first-served basis).

Founded by the International Association of Northern Viticulture, the first VitiNord conference was held in Riga, Latvia, in 2006. Alternating between European and North American locations, subsequent conferences were held in Saint-Hyacinthe (near Montreal), Quebec, in 2009; Neubrandenburg, Germany, and Szczecin, Poland, in 2012; and Nebraska City, Neb., in 2015. Previous VitiNord conferences have had participants from 16 countries including Poland, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, England, Russia, Ukraine, China, Canada and the United States.


Posted on 01.11.2018 - 03:01:04 PST
I think the viticulturists should try and get it right ... this is not cool-climate grape growing. It's actually cold-climate growing. There's a big difference.
Cool-climate grape regions can exist either because of cool-moderate days and moderate nights, or the combination of moderate-warm days plus cold nights.
Regions such as vineyards in Scandinavia, England and even southern Tasmania have none of these features - they have the general combination of cold days and cold nights.
Sylv Aggy