Research Topic: The effects of sulfur dioxide concentration on wine yeasts and wine sensory attributes
Research Location: UBC Okanagan
Research Supervisor: Dr. Daniel Durall
I study the microbial, chemical, and sensory aspects of wines made with different levels of sulfur dioxide added at crush. Sulfur dioxide is currently a non-negotiable chemical additive to the winemaking process, as it acts as both a strong antioxidant and an antimicrobial agent, providing chemical and microbiological stability to wine. However, sulfite sensitivities and allergies are a reality for many people, and there has been growing consumer demand for food products, including wine, with fewer added sulfites. Winemakers want to provide these products for their consumers, but there has been little research in recent years investigating the effects of lower sulfite additions on the microbial and sensory properties of wine. I aim to narrow this gap in knowledge by investigating the effects of three levels of sulfur dioxide additions on the microbial, chemical, and final sensory properties of Pinot gris wines produced in a commercial setting.
Home Town: Kelowna, BC
Faculty/School: Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences
Program: Master of Science in Biology
Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree?
I have always been passionate about knowledge and learning, so pursuing a graduate degree felt like a natural next step once I had completed my undergraduate degree.
Why did you decide to study at UBC's Okanagan campus?
UBC Okanagan is located in the middle of the Okanagan Valley, home to a burgeoning wine industry. Its location allows for unique research opportunities for people studying wine, because many local wineries are interested in collaborating with the university. These local industry partnerships allow for much of our research to be conducted in commercial settings, making our results not only of interest to the international scientific community, but also applicable to the wine industry.
What impact do you hope your research will have?
My hope is that the results of my research will give winemakers the ability to make informed decisions about how much sulfur dioxide to add at the beginning of fermentation, allowing them to potentially lower the amount that is added.
Canadian Graduate Scholarship Master Program - NSERC Postgraduate Scholarship
Last reviewed 11/20/2015 2:18:00 PM