Wineries in Oregon have had to deal with a new struggle in recent years: the effect of wildfire smoke on their grapes.
On September 21, Oregon State University researchers used a smoke chamber created specifically to smoke out grapes in OSU’s vineyard. This technology is being used to try to find out what chemical compounds in the smoke are being imparted into grapes during wildfires. OSU researchers say when grapes are exposed to smoke, wine made with those grapes can take on an ashy, sometimes rubbery taste that is not wanted.
OSU researchers say this is a multi-year project, and they are almost done with the project for the year 2022, but the study is far from over and they plan to perform more experiments in 2023 to answer more questions.