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Grape and Wine Experts to Convene at B.E.V. NY March 1-3

The fourth annual event features leading academics from Cornell and other colleges in the Northeast

Cornell's annual conference for New York's grape and wine industry will be held March 1-3 at the RIT Conference Center in Henrietta. The fourth annual B.E.V. NY [Business.Enology.Viticulture.] features leading academics from Cornell, Penn State, Tompkins County Community College and the Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) as they bring attendees up to date in the new and cutting-edge innovations in their respective fields.

B.E.V. NY is New York's annual conference for the grape and wine industry, combining the resources of Cornell's Extension Enology Lab, the Finger Lakes Grape Program, and the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management.

“The great thing about B.E.V. NY is that our format suits people in all sectors of the industry and at all experience levels,” says Chris Gerling, enology extension associate. “Regardless of what part of the business you’re in or how long you’ve been doing it, everyone should find something new and relevant.”

For the first time, B.E.V. NY will be held Wednesday through Friday, instead of Thursday through Saturday. The change was requested by many industry members to make attendance more convenient for those who need to run busy tasting rooms on the weekend.

Also for the first time, this year’s Enology Day will consist of a series of wine tastings. For the Thursday event, Cornell Enology’s Advisory Council for Extension (ACE) have donated their time and effort to organize tastings from New York’s six major wine growing areas, each showcasing a cultivar or wine style important to their region. The event will wind up with an in-depth discussion of rosé wine styles, including tastings of benchmark world rosés and a comparative selection of regional wines.

Opening the conference on Wednesday, Business day will feature some new faces and some familiar ones in new roles. Samuel Filler, incoming executive director of the New York Wine & Grape Foundation (NYWGF), will lead off a state, national and international look at the current business climate for wine. Following Filler will be Jim Trezise, longtime NYWGF leader and now president of WineAmerica, to present a national outlook. Greg Hodson, chief technical regulatory liaison for E. & J. Gallo Winery and current president of FIVS will provide an international perspective. FIVS is a global trade organization that works to serve the interests of the beverage alcohol industry.

Business day will also feature marketing and accounting presentations, and an update from the New York State Liquor Authority by chairman Vincent Bradley and secretary Thomas Donohue.

Viticulture Day on Friday will feature expert speakers discussing the issues most relevant to New York State grape growers. Topics will range from the long-term repercussions of drought, effective pest management strategies and research on varietal clones to assessing the profitability of vineyard blocks and negotiating vineyard leases. Pesticide recertification credits will be available for this program as well.

Viticulture Day will also be an opportunity to hear from four Cornell scientists — Alan Lakso, Tom Burr, Andrew Landers and Wayne Wilcox — who have made significant contributions to grape growing during their careers and have recently retired or will be retiring this year. This will be an opportunity to hear from each of them one final time at the winter conference, and also to thank them for their work on behalf of the industry.

The B.E.V. NY trade show held Thursday and Friday will provide ample opportunity for businesses that support the wine and grape industry to share their offerings with winery owners, vineyard managers, and other industry professionals. 

To register, visit www.bevny.org. Admission prices increase February 24.