Wine fermentation

Christopher Curtin, Paul Chambers, Sakkie Pretorius

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionary/reference book


Winemaking, as the oldest form and use of biotechnology, is imbued with deep tradition; however, globalization of the wine industry has necessitated modernization of this ancient craft, and this has largely been achieved by the application of science and technology. An ancient cultural practice has thus been brought into the modern era. Biotechnology has contributed to this modernization by providing winemakers with, among other things, knowledge of how to improve the reliability of fermentations, novel fermentation starter cultures, and processing enzymes. Recent advances in the biological sciences have the potential to dramatically accelerate this modernization, enabling biotechnologists to generate tailored starter cultures for production of wines targeted to specific markets. This entry explores the potential of 21st century biotechnology to accelerate development of new tools for winemakers at a time when the need for innovation driven by global competition is high.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of biotechnology in agriculture and food
EditorsDennis R. Heldman, Matthew B. Wheeler, Dallas G Hoover
Place of PublicationLondon
PublisherTaylor & Francis
Number of pages6
ISBN (Print)9780849350276
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • fermentation
  • genetic modification
  • starter cultures
  • synthetic biology
  • systems biology
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae
  • wine
  • yeast


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