Research Priorities

Originally set in 2017, the NGRA Research Committee refreshed our industry research priorities in 2023. From big, broad ideas to more granular “streams and themes,” these priorities guide our thinking around projects to initiate and support.


Support extension education and outreach efforts for the U.S. grape industry   

  • Improve the visibility and promote the value of extension, education and outreach professionals
  • Broaden professional development and industry interaction opportunities for extension personnel
  • Ensure the integration of extension, education and outreach efforts in research projects


Advance grape genetics and germplasm improvement, and ensure the availability of healthy plant material for the U.S. grape and wine industry

  • Guide germplasm improvement by elucidating genotype to phenotype relationships for key traits, including yield, fruit quality, pest and disease resistance, and tolerance to environmental stress
  • Develop molecular markers and high-throughput phenotyping systems to improve the efficiency and speed of new variety development
  • Build research capabilities for systems biology and genome editing in grape
  • Identify, establish and maintain healthy plant material


Build improved production systems to ensure the long-term economic resilience of the U.S. grape and wine industry

  • Develop and deploy mechanization and automation systems that enhance production efficiency
  • Advance integrated farm management systems and real-time monitoring, modeling and management of canopy growth and health, fruit development and composition, yield estimation, pests and diseases, and water, nutrients and other production inputs
  • Advance practices that maintain fruit quality during postharvest transport, processing and storage


Safeguard the long-term environmental sustainability and adaptability of U.S. grape and wine production to the changing environment 

  • Develop and deploy cultural practices that ensure the long-term sustainability of the natural resources required for grape production
  • Elucidate vine physiological responses, adaptations and management strategies for extreme climatic events such as heat, cold and drought
  • Advance vineyard management practices that optimize soil health, including soil physical properties, soil chemistry and the soil microbiome, for improved vine performance
  • Characterize and mitigate the impact of environmental or airborne contaminants on vine productivity and fruit quality

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