Smoke taint talk will highlight Unified wine conference

Tim Hearden 2020 Unified Wine and Grape Symposium
People attend the 2020 Unified Wine and Grape Symposium in Sacramento. The 2021 conference in January will be held virtually.
The symposium will be held virtually from Jan. 26-28, 2021.

A comprehensive session on the effects of wildfire smoke on grape and wine quality will be among the highlights of the 2021 Unified Wine and Grape Symposium, which will be held virtually Jan. 26-28.

Other topics will include diversity and inclusion in senior leadership, operations, sales, marketing and hospitality, and the annual State of the Industry report.

Registration will open Nov. 3 for the conference, which promises a “full virtual experience” including not only speakers but also trade show entrants. The cost is $250 for the full conference for members of the American Society for Enology and Viticulture and the California Association of Winegrape Growers, or $470 for non-members. The cost of a single-day pass is $165 or $240, respectively.

“After the year we have had, the Unified Symposium is more important than ever,” said John Aguirre, CAWG’s president. “The 2021 Unified will feature leading experts and convene people from all parts of the industry to deliver outstanding, insightful program sessions.

“Anyone who wants to understand how to successfully navigate the challenges and opportunities confronting our industry should register for the Unified,” he said.

The smoke taint discussion will open the conference Jan. 26 with a panel of experts, including Tom Collins from Washington State University and Anita Oberholster from the University of California, Davis, according to a symposium news release.

Speakers will examine the latest information on smoke and winegrowing, including applied solutions now in place, the state of research in the U.S., industry collaboration opportunities and understanding the risks moving forward, according to the release.

The State of the Industry presentation Jan. 27 will include Danny Brager from Brager Beverage Alcohol Consulting, Jeff Bitter from Allied Grape Growers and Glenn Proctor from The Ciatti Co. The Wine Economist’s Mike Veseth will moderate the discussion.

For more information and to register, visit

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