Cooperativas Agroalimentarias de Castilla-La Mancha (Castilla-La Mancha Agri-Food Cooperatives) is in charge of heading this European platform in the Castellano-Manchego region. The organization will also be holding its General Assembly at the National Trade Fair on Wine, with more than one hundred cooperatives expected to attend
The on-line platform WINETech, in which a total of eleven specialized agencies from seven wine regions in Spain, France and Portugal are all working, will be made known to all the companies attending the National Trade Fair on Wine (FENAVIN), which is to be held on the upcoming dates of May 10th to the 12th.
This tool saw the light in 2009 in order to establish communication links between the wine producing corporate network and the sector's specific research groups, quite often far-removed from each other. The initiative is financed in its seventy-five percent with Feder funds, with a budget of 1.6 million Euros, mission of which is to promote R&D and innovation and the transfer of technology to the wineries.
On the first day of the trade fair, FENAVIN will be hosting a dissemination workshop covering this European project, the same promoted by the Cooperativas Agroalimentarias de Castilla-La Mancha, which will include lectures that will be given by the technicians Shira Murciano and Jesús Ángel Peñaranda, as well as the researchers Manuel Carmona and Rosario Salinas, of the University of Castilla-La Mancha.
Castilla-La Mancha, Castilla y León, Galicia and Rioja are the regions that will be participating in the program, along with the French region of Languedoc-Roussillon and the Portuguese regions of the Alentejo and Northern Portugal. These are important wine-producing areas that will put all the advances made in innovation for technological improvement at the reach of those companies that want to become involved. Thus the geographical dimension will be surpassed, explained the agricultural engineer of the Cooperativas Agroalimentarias de Castilla-La Mancha, Shira Murciano, "allowing connections between the regions, which to date were non-existent and also providing the opportunity to access all the research groups in these areas."
This digital tool that can be accessed via the website www.winetech-sudoe.eu or www.agroalimentariasclm.coop has already obtained the first results following a formidable task involving compilation of the wineries' technological needs, summarized in finding out about the projects in which the wineries are interested, as well as the creation of a database that has been made by the regional University, the latter in the case of Castilla-La Mancha, where the complete R&D and innovation offer is duly included. A magazine will also be published very soon.
'Dealcoholization' of Wines
In that pertaining to the specific needs of the Castellano-Manchego region, Murciano detailed the corporate interest that can be seen in the dealcoholization of wines, efficiency in irrigation, use of fast and low-cost methods to obtain the grape's degree of healthiness and evaluation of the sub-products. With regards to the first request, the technician informs that there is an ever increasing consumer demand for low-alcohol content wine and despite the fact that there are techniques to achieve this, "thorough research is necessary so that the product's organoleptic quality will not be diminished," she underlined. On the other hand, she added, the wineries are requesting better and more economic control over the grape quality, in order to obtain its degree of healthiness, color, ripening and the condition of elements such as the grape skin. Among other demands, the wineries are also requesting information about yeasts or enzymes, "components in which some sort of neutral regulatory agency should intervene," the expert mentioned.
In Shira Murciano's opinion a direct consequence of this European program is that the research groups, once the corporate concerns are made known, will then be able to direct the projects towards more practical matters.
In like manner to other important agricultural organizations, Cooperativas Agroalimentarias de Castilla-La Mancha will be holding its Ordinary General Assembly at FENAVIN, with attendance of more than one hundred representatives of the cooperatives being expected. Matters such as the Strategic Plan on the Cooperative System will be undertaken during the Assembly, with the approach based on improving the corporate dimension of Castilla-La Mancha's cooperative wineries, apart from approving the corporate organization's lines of action, if the same proceeds, and likewise covering the previous year's financial state of accounts and balance sheets. The event will be taking place on May 11th in the trade fair's auditorium.