Healthy grapevines (Vitis vinifera) in ecological winery through science, innovation and transfer (VitiFIT)
Project code: 2818OE115
Contract period: 17.06.2019 - 31.05.2022
Budget: 34,813 Euro
Purpose of research: Applied research
Keywords: crop protection, plant health, viticulture (winery), organic farming
The control of downy mildew, caused by Plasmopara viticola, is one of the major challenges in viticulture, especially in organic viticulture. Due to the ban of copper-containing pesticides and massive impacts of climate change, organic viticulture is increasingly entering an economic crisis. Therefore, the aim of the proposed joint project 'VitiFIT' is to develop a catalogue of measures with practicable strategies for maintaining grapevine health. In this way, cultivation conditions are improved, the production security is consolidated and thus economic viability is guaranteed. Crop protection strategies will mainly be based on copper minimisation (microencapsulated copper salts) and copper substitutes (plant extracts, UVC technology) and their combination. Associated cultivation and cultural measures should reduce the inoculum potential of P. viticola. Molecular biological analyses will address the mycobiome of the vine leaf under these conditions. Particular attention should be paid to the plant protection agent potassium phosphonate. Existing and newly bred fungus tolerant grape varieties (in German: PIWIs) should play a central role in the developed action plans. Aims here are the improvement of the enological wine style, the market acceptance of PIWIs and their introduction into practice. The identification of new resistance loci against P. viticola and their integration into current breeding lines will support the development of novel PIWIs. Another focus of the project is the adaptation of the forecast model 'VitiMeteo Rebenperonospora' to PIWIs. In the sector of knowledge and technology transfer, communication, the flow of information and networking between research and practice are to be optimised. The VitiFIT project should make a significant contribution to achieving the '20% goal' (national sustainability goal concerning the percentage of organic agriculture area).