A Meeting of the Minds
On August 28-29, 2003, 20 leaders and key stakeholders from the California grape and wine industry and the University of California at Davis Department of Viticulture and Enology met to address a growing crisis in research funding, and to develop a process for establishing research priorities that would mutually benefit the wine industry and academic and research organizations. Following that first meeting, the participants agreed to develop the Winegrower’s Critical Research Investment Initiative (WCRII).
This forward-thinking group outlined a vision for the future of grape and wine research and funding, and for how the grape and wine industry, university research institutions, USDA and other government agencies, could work together. It sought to assure the American grape industries would lead the world in wine science, innovation, economic impact, and environmental and business practices.
A New Name
In 2005, the WCRII changed its name to the National Grape & Wine Initiative (NGWI), acknowledging the greater collective power in advancing the cause for the American grape industries at large. NGWI launched its website the same year and three years later, in 2008, it hired its first full-time president. It has since been instrumental in securing more than $30 million for game-changing national-level research spanning all four grape sectors.
NGWI addresses larger-scale topics that affect the entire industry and are of a scope that no one segment of the industry could impact as effectively alone. Each year, NGWI collaborates to prioritize research for the grape and grape product industries and works to secure increased government, academic and private sector funding to accomplish these important research needs. NGWI then works to ensure research findings are made available to industry members through extension and outreach resources in the field.
NGWI ongoingly works toward our vision, that the U.S. grape and grape product industries lead the world in sustainability, value and quality. To achieve the vision, NGWI’s mission is to drive research to maximize the productivity, sustainability and competitiveness of the American grape industries.
We welcome your participation and encourage you to contact us to find out how you can be a part of our important work.