Extension agencies at the University of Georgia (UGA) are hosting their first New Grape Growers Conference on August 16 at Crane Creek Vineyards in Young Harris.
Melissa Mattee, a UGA county Extension coordinator, says the Georgia grape industry has been on the rise, which sparked the idea for the conference. Vineyards have been popping up around Georgia, especially in the northern region of the state, according to Mattee. Due to the increasing popularity, UGA formed a viticulture team made up of a viticulture specialist, fruit pathologists, insect management specialists and Extension agents. Together, they planned the grower conference.
There will be 12 informational sessions throughout the day on topics such as variety selection, insect management, business management strategies and the benefits of county Extension. The topics are a mix between learning about the actual production of the grapes and the wine, and the business decisions that come along with running your own production.
“There will be short sessions, but it will be a jam-packed day,” says Mattee.
According to Mattee, the conference is mostly aimed at growers who are just starting or are interested in starting their own production systems. However, she says it may be a good conference for established producers to attend as well. The informational sessions may introduce new strategies or ideas to experienced growers.
If you cannot attend the conference, but would like to know more about Georgia viticulture, visit the UGA extension viticulture blog (link). For more information about the conference or to register, click here.
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