Assessing clonal variability in Chardonnay and Shiraz for future climate change


Summary

Objective

To assess viticultural and winemaking differences among Shiraz and Chardonnay clones grown across five Australian wine regions

Background

There are many commercially available clones of the major winegrape varieties.  Australia holds a unique repository of mature vine material that contains selections from very old vineyards planted on their own roots (some pre-phylloxera).

Industry uptake of different clones has been slow, primarily because there is a limited understanding of how clones differ and can contribute to wine style, and also those best suited to specific geographical regions and climates.

Research approach

This project will evaluate clones from replicated field trials already established in the Riverland, western Victoria, Barossa, Margaret River and Great Southern. Fruit composition and wine quality parameters will be assessed over three seasons for at least five clones each of Chardonnay and Shiraz.

In addition to this, selected Shiraz clones will be sequenced to establish clonal relationships and evaluate genetic diversity across clones.

Sector benefits

The knowledge generated by this project will enable grape growers and winemakers to select planting material best suited to their current conditions and intended wine style and that will reduce the impacts of future climatic changes.