Precision Viticulture Takes Center Stage

By Donnell Brown Under crisp, wind-swept blue skies on April 13, 2022, 150 people boarded three buses for a daylong tour of precision viticulture applications in California’s Salinas Valley. The sold-out event—the ASEV-NGRA Precision Viticulture Demo Day—offered insight into what’s possible today in precision grape-growing and what’s just around the corner. Here’s a snapshot of […]

Read More

Happy Accidents

Who doesn’t love a happy ending…especially when, at the beginning of the story, things are going all wrong? One of my favorite such stories involves cheese. Years ago, when I lived on Long Island, NY, I was tasting with cheesemaker Art Ludlow at his family’s artisanal Mecox Bay Dairy in Bridgehampton. As I gushed over […]

Read More

Time for Research

Time is a hot topic in March, when dark-weary Americans spring our clocks forward. The longer days yield more time for productivity, feeding our inclination to DO, to amass results in shorter spans. Four-day work-weeks, anyone? Some things, though, can’t be rushed. Research takes time. But some research calls for more than most. For example: […]

Read More

Building up the PV Evidence Base

In June 2021, with our colleagues at the American Society for Enology and Viticulture, we hosted the ASEV-NGRA Precision Viticulture (PV) Symposium. Kicking off the full day of Zoom-based conference proceedings, Rob Bramley, Senior Principal Research Scientist at CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation) in Australia, teed up the value proposition for precision farming. […]

Read More

Twenty-Twenty, Too

At the outset of 2021, I heard a quip I found as humorous as it was hopeful: that the new year would be pronounced “twenty-twenty won.” To me, it signaled that, as rotten as the previous year—the start of the pandemic—had been, we’d move forward collectively, maybe even return to relative normalcy. And yet… As […]

Read More

Rich Smith Award Presented to Tom Davenport

SACRAMENTO, CA, January 26, 2022 – The sixth-annual Rich Smith Award of Excellence for outstanding contributions to the American grape and wine industry was presented today to Thomas (Tom) Davenport, a retired executive from National Grape Cooperative who has been a leader in fostering and coordinating research on state and national levels. The prestigious award […]

Read More

Maybe It’s You…

As it does every December 21, this month brought the shortest, darkest day of the year. With the Omicron variant circulating, there’s a lot of uncertainty and anxiety out there. Around this Winter Solstice, it’s been easy to focus on the darkness. At NGRA’s End-of-Year Board Meeting, held via Zoom on November 18, 2021, we […]

Read More

A Slice of Heaven

NGRA holds three Board meetings each year, and we plan all three a year in advance. Normally, the mid-year (June/July) and end-of-year (November) meetings take place in different grape-growing regions around the country, while our first-of-year (January) meeting is always held in Sacramento, CA, where NGRA is based, the week of the Unified Wine and […]

Read More

Don’t Be a Stranger

Yesterday, the USDA issued a press release, announcing the appointment of 14 people from across the agricultural landscape to the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics (NAREEE) Advisory Board. All 14 were selected and appointed by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack. Six members were re-appointed, and eight are new. I am one of […]

Read More