The Truth Is Out There

This month, the NGRA Research Theme Committees began their brainstorming and prioritization process, each with the goal of coming up with one or two ideas that can be progressed into actual research projects. As we dig into the exercise, generating input on industry-needed research, one theme has become bracingly clear. As a community, collectively, we know very little about what grape research is being done across the country.

We thought maybe we could shed some light on the subject.

We started compiling a spreadsheet that captures all the funded grape research we can find. From state and federal grant programs to intramural funding sources (e.g., research coded to grape for USDA scientists annually) across the US, we’re seeking to create a comprehensive snapshot into the ways scientists are working to improve viticulture in America. Our spreadsheet starts with 2020 funding and will continue from here. And it includes only projects that are directly related to grape–e.g., grapes are specifically referenced in the title or objectives of each project. There are a lot of studies going on in water, soil, insect pests, sustainability and/or organics, and more that may impact grape, but don’t have grapes as their focus. These projects are absolutely valuable contributions to grape research! But for the purposes of our spreadsheet, they are not included.

We hope our spreadsheet is useful, not just for our Research Committees in their work to initiate new research, but for the grape and wine community at large. It’s a vehicle to understand the science that’s underway to advance our industry, and to see the names of the people and organizations doing and funding it. We’re grateful to all who are listed.
The spreadsheet is available to download right now! And it will be updated ongoingly, just as soon as we get wind of funded grape research. (Note: If you administer or are aware of other grant programs that fund grape research not represented in our spreadsheet, hit reply and let us know!) Finding this information takes a bit of legwork, but it’s certainly less difficult than understanding whether or not we’re being visited by aliens. The truth (about funded grape research) is out there–and we aspire to share it with you.