Proceedings 6th International Congress on Organic Viticulture
Helga Willer and Urs Meier
Preparations are in full swing for the 6th Congress on Organic Viticulture. Delegates put
the finishing touches to posters and rehearse their talks for national and thematic presentations,
while the organizers’ phone lines threaten to overheat. Meanwhile out in the
vineyard, the vine-grower has quite different problems to contend with:
Will he have more success at keeping grape downy mildew in check this year than in
1999, or will he have to apply copper to within a gram of the permitted level?
Yet again, the situation is critical. Can the business withstand a second poor harvest?
When will the researchers come up with a really effective organic spray?
The wines on the supermarket shelves bear the seal of the BIO SUISSE Bud, but they
are foreign imports. They are cheaper by one third than the Swiss growers own products.
Aditionally, abroad more copper may have been applied in the production.
Hardly a level playing field.
These and other contentious issues (such the failure to legislate in favour of new fungusresistant
varieties within the EU) are raised in papers at this 6th International Congress
on Organic Viticulture.
The issues demand urgent attention and we vine-growers are exceedingly grateful that
this conference is addressing them, because it keeps up our hopes that the international
exchange of experience and expertise will speed up progress towards productive solutions.
With this in mind, on behalf of the Swiss organic vine-growers as well as our colleagues
in neighbouring countries who face similar problems, I would like to express our thanks
for the tremendous effort that has gone into preparing and organizing this Congress and
compiling this conference publication.
Malans, Switzerland, August 2000
Research publications concerning biodynamics