Press Release

Bank of the West and Fruition Sciences recognize wineries and viticulture experts for industry advancements
San Francisco & Napa, CA | Jan 20, 2015

Bank of the West and Fruition Sciences today recognized the winner and two finalists of the second annual Vintage Report Innovation Award Presented by Bank of the West. The award celebrates innovation and sustainability in viticulture.

This year's winner was a collaborative experiment by E. & J. Gallo and IBM, whose approach used a variable-rate irrigation system across separate quadrants of a 31-acre Cabernet Sauvignon vineyard. The result decreased vineyard spatial variability and increased water-use efficiency without compromising quality during a period of historic drought.

Two finalists were also celebrated for their innovative approaches during the 2014 vintage.

  • Monica Cooper, UC Cooperative Extension Farm Advisor, presented a collaborative project with Matthew and Melissa Staid on new approaches to monitoring and managing Grapevine Leafroll Disease, which poses a threat to vineyard health and sustainability in every grape-growing region of the world.
  • Ridge Vineyard presented comparative research on two rootstocks from the same ranch, analyzing petiole and berry samples several times during the growing season to determine how each rootstock altered the resulting wine’s nutrient status.

The three submissions were honored during the annual Vintage Report Conference at the Westin Verasa in Napa on January 20th.

Each year, Fruition Sciences organizes the Vintage Report Conference, an exclusive event that brings together winemakers, viticulturists and scientists to discuss the latest innovations and advances in viticulture and enology. In doing so, the Vintage Report provides a venue for bringing new ideas to the forefront and improving the industry as a whole. Now in its second year, the Vintage Report Innovation Award Presented by Bank of the West focuses on approaches and techniques used during the 2014 vintage (though they may have started earlier) that are either being used in or are exportable to Napa terroirs.

"As one of the largest bank lenders to the nation's agricultural sector, Bank of the West's Premium Wine Group has a seat at the table leading or participating in conversations about some of the most exciting advances taking place in the wine industry," said Jean-Marc Torre, Head of the Commercial Banking Group at Bank of the West. "Partnering with Fruition Sciences to highlight creative experimentation in the field has been a great way to celebrate the passion that drives our clients and the innovations that will influence generations of winemakers to come."

As this years winner, E. & J. Gallo and IBM were invited to present their project and results at Fruition Sciences' 2014 Vintage Report Conference in Napa.

The submission period for the third annual Vintage Report Innovation Award – which focuses on approaches and experiments of the 2015 vintage – will begin this summer and will end on December 1, 2015. Information can be found at the award website.

About Fruition Sciences

Founded in 2007, Fruition Sciences is an information technology company, leader in providing winemakers and grape growers with a holistic software to optimize their vineyard management. With a focus on monitoring plant physiology, Fruition Sciences has developed a very unique approach to optimize vineyard monitoring.

About Bank of the West

Bank of the West is a regional financial services company chartered in California and headquartered in San Francisco with $69 billion in assets. Founded in 1874, Bank of the West provides a wide range of personal, commercial, wealth management and international banking services through more than 650 offices in 22 states and digital channels. Bank of the West is a subsidiary of BNP Paribas, which has a presence in more than 75 countries with 180,000 employees.

Media Contacts: 
Maiwenn Renault, Oxygen PR

Ayele Ajavon, Bank of the West

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180 Montgomery Street
San Francisco, CA 94104


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