Thompson Rivers University
Thompson Rivers University

Environmental Science Seminar Series: Impact of wildfire smoke on BC wines

Dr Wesley Zandberg presents a talk called Developing analytical methods to determine the potential for forest fire-exposed grapes to yield “smoke-tainted” wines.

Abstract

In addition to environmental and property damage, the frequent forest fires occurring in BC also pose a serious threat to BC’s grape/wine industry in the form of “smoke-taint”.

Smoke-taint occurs when wines are made from grapes exposed to smoke during the ripening process.

Though the compounds responsible for the odour of smoke are known, these are quickly linked to diverse sugars within grapes, a process that masks their odour and prevents their detection by most analytical techniques.

Fermentation releases these sugar-bound aroma compounds. This talk will discuss our lab’s efforts to determine smoke-taint potential without performing fermentations.