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$10,000 Tasmanian Viticulture Fellowship announced

The fourth recipient of the $10,000 Don Martin Sustainable Viticulture Award, presented by the Alcorso Foundation, has been announced as James Aubrey from Hill Smith Family Vineyards.

As part of the fellowship, Aubrey will undertake a study tour in Germany’s Mosel region, as well as Burgundy and Champagne in France with a focus on viticultural research and extension specific to cool climates.

He will also have the opportunity to meet with researchers at Geisenheim University, Reims University and the Jules Guyot Institute of Vine and Wine to discuss topics including environmental stress, sustaniable production, grapevine physiology, biocontrol and technology transfer.

He will also attend the 9th International Cool Climate Symposium which will be hosted in Brighton, England, following its successful pitch at the 8th event held in Tasmania in 2012.

Aubrey is a technical officer at the Jansz Parish Vineyard in the Coal River Valley, overseeing a large and expanding vineyard.

Sheralee Davies, Wine Tasmania chief executive officer, welcomed the announcement of Aubrey as the 2014 Don Martin Fellowship recipient and noted the importance of research and extension specific to cool climates.

“The majority of Australia’s wine production is in warmer climates, and our national research has therefore tended to focus on issues impacting on warmer regions," she said.

“Tasmania has a climate and growing conditions that have little in common with mainland wine regions and targeted cool climate research is incredibly important, particularly at a time when we are experiencing strong growth and welcoming new entrants to our sector.

“Through partnerships with the Tasmanian Institute of Agriculture, Australian Wine Research Institute, individual wine producers, suppliers and government, Tasmania has had an impressive research and extension agenda, which has unquestionably benefited the Tasmanian wine sector and contributed to its outstanding global reputation for quality.

“The investigation undertaken by James will assist shape research priorities within Tasmania and support linkages with other cool climate areas.”

The fellowship was initiated to commemorate influential Tasmanian viticulturist Dr Don Martin by the Alcorso Foundation.

Its intent is to provide an individual with the opportunity to undertake national or international travel for study or practical activities that will benefit the Tasmanian wine sector through innovation, sustainability and best practice.

The Alcorso Foundation has partnered with the state’s peak wine body, Wine Tasmania, to deliver the fellowship.

For more information visit www.alcorso.org.

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