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Tests to measure bushfire damage to wine grapes

The extent of fire and smoke damage to Victoria’s wine grape crops is expected to be known within a few weeks.

The Grape and Wine Research and Development Corporation has said South Australian laboratories are testing 500g samples of grapes from Victorian vineyards.

They are testing for a chemical that produces smoke taint, which is capable of ruining the vintage for some growers.

Corporation executive director, John Harvey, said conditions in the aftermath of the bushfires may not have been as damaging as feared.

“Probably the smoke hasn’t actually hung around quite as long as it has on previous occasions,” he said.

“In terms of the research that’s been done, the smoke has been around probably at not the most critical time in terms of having a smoke effect, so it really depends on what those results start to show.”

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