A tool designed at the University of Zaragoza will translate into energy and maceration time savings and an increase in its production capacity without the need to invest in the acquisition of new tanks.
Researchers Javier Raso and Ignacio Álvarez have developed the process of applying high voltage electric pulse technology (PEF) to reduce maceration time in winemaking and the 18th General Assembly of the International Organization of Vine and Wine (OIV) has approved its use.
Raso and Álvarez belong to the Research Group New Technologies for Food Processing of the Agrifood Institute of Aragon IA2 of the University of Zaragoza.
The maceration treatment using PEF technology causes the formation of pores in the skin cells of the grape, facilitating the extraction of phenolic compounds and aromatic precursors located inside, which play a decisive role in the final quality of the wine.
Thanks to the approval of the OIV, the wineries will now have a tool that will allow them to reduce the maceration time in the winemaking process, which will translate into energy savings and an increase in their capacity for production without the need to invest in the acquisition of new fermentation-maceration tanks. All of this translates into an improvement in the competitiveness and sustainability of the wineries.
About maceration technology
The technology approval process began in 2018 at the request of the Spanish delegation to the OIV coordinated by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, and Food.
The results obtained by the researchers from the University of Zaragoza, the result of their studies presented for three years to the OIV group of experts, were decisive in overcoming the eight stages required for the approval of a Resolution by this body.
The OIV is an intergovernmental scientific-technical body made up of 47 member states from the five continents, representing 85% of world production.
The main function of the OIV is to draw up harmonized and internationally recognized standards for the production of wine products.
To achieve its objectives, the OIV works with a network of over a thousand experts from around the world and final decisions are made by consensus of the Member States.
The acceptance of the PEF technology by the OIV and the fact that commercial equipment capable of applying these treatments is already available in a winery guarantee that very soon it will be possible to offer wine obtained from grapes treated by PEF.
Source: Vinetur magazine.