Identifying Clean Nursery Stocks for a Sustainable New York Viticulture

Viruses can be major threats to a profitable and sustainable viticulture by reducing vine growth, fruit yield and quality, as well as by limiting the productive lifespan of vineyards. Viruses are primarily transmitted by vegetative propagation and grafting, although some of them can secondarily be transmitted by insect vectors in vineyard settings. The proposed project is designed to collaborate with local nurserymen on the production of virus-tested, clean grapevine stocks in support of a NY grape certification program.

Project Summary Impact Statement: Indexing of vine stocks at three local nurseries revealed that only 0.2% (69 of 28,021) of the leaf samples collected from vine stocks and tested for nine viruses in 2021 were infected. This is a salient milestone, as the number of vines infected with a detrimental virus in increase vineyard blocks managed by the three New York nurseries is extremely low. Infected vines were culled. This work is a salient and encouraging milestone for the production and adoption of clean vines derived from virus tested vine stocks, and the reinstatement of a grape certification program in New York that is anticipated to provide a competitive edge to the thriving New York grape, juice, and wine industries. I am extremely gratefully to the New York Wine and Grape Foundation for its patronage of this program.

Click below to read progress reports from each phase of this project.

Marc Fuchs

About the Researcher

Marc Fuchs
Professor, Plant Pathology, Cornell Agritech at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station

Marc was born and raised in the grape growing region of Alsace in France. His research and extension program at Cornell University focuses on virus diseases of fruit and vegetable crops. Marc has worked on grapevine viruses over the past 35 years, developing rapid detection techniques, understanding their dissemination, and investigating effective management strategies. 

About our Research Program

Since its creation in 1985, NYWGF has sponsored an ambitious and comprehensive program in close coordination with the industry and academia. As with the promotion program, private sector funding is required to leverage the state matching funds. NYWGF’s annual research budget is normally between $350,000-$500,000 to support dozens of individual projects, mostly conducted by Cornell University’s New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva. Click here to view a list of funded research projects for the 2021-2022 fiscal year.

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New York Wine & Grape Foundation

The mission of the New York Wine & Grape Foundation is to promote the world-class image of New York grapes and wines from our diverse regions to responsibly benefit farmers, producers and consumers through innovative marketing, research, communication, and advocacy.