The French Order of Agricultural Merit has been presented to all of the Presidents that constitute the Steering Committee of the OIV, and who were elected by the General Assembly of the OIV Member States during the GA in Izmir (Turkey) in June 2012. Their three-year mandate will end during the GA in Mainz (Germany) in July 2015.
Ms Catherine Geslain-Lanéelle, Director General for Agricultural, Agri-food and Territorial Policies in the French Ministry of Agriculture, stressed the importance that France is attaching to the OIV's activities by awarding the Order of Agricultural Merit to the scientists elected to the highest positions in the Organisation.
Qualifications: Doctor in Agronomic Engineering, specialised in viticulture and oenology.
Professional career: Teacher and Researcher, currently a Professor of Plant Production (viticulture) at the Higher Technical School of Agricultural Engineering of Madrid.
Specialised in vine physiology and wine production. Director of 15 doctoral theses. Author of 165 publications.
OIV career: Spanish delegate within the "Viticulture" Commission since 1991, Vice-President of the "Vitivinicultural Zoning" Expert Group from 2004-2007, President of the "Viticultural Environment and Climate Change" Expert Group in 2007.
Other achievements: Member of the European Group for Vine Training Systems, of the Italian Academy of Vine and Wine, and of the Consultative Committee of the Spanish Wine Federation.
Qualifications: Doctor of Viticulture.
Professional career: Teacher and Researcher, Professor of Viticulture at the Faculty of Agriculture of Ege University in Izmir.
Specialised in organic production and canopy management. Author of 20 scientific publications.
OIV career: Turkish delegate within the "Viticulture" Commission since 2007, Scientific Secretary of the "Table Grapes, Raisins and Unfermented Vine Products" Sub-Commission in 2007, then President of this Sub-Commission since 2012.
Other achievements: Member of the Turkish Horticultural Society, member of the Scientific Committee for the World Congress of Vine and Wine (2012).
Qualifications: Doctor of Agronomy, specialised in viticulture and oenology.
Professional career: Teacher and Researcher, Professor of Oenology, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ia?i. Director of 7 doctoral theses.
OIV career: Romanian delegate within the "Oenology" Commission since 1998, President of the "Specifications of Oenological Products" Expert Group (2007-2012), President of the "Oenology" Commission since 2012.
Other achievements: Member of the Romanian Office of Vine and Wine Products, member of the Romanian Academy of Agricultural and Forestry Sciences, President of the National Vineyard Growers and Wine Producers Association.
He is receiving the Order of Agricultural Merit 19 years after his father, Valeriu Cotea, who also received this award as President of the "Oenology" Commission in 1996.
Qualifications: Graduate from the Faculty of Pharmacy at the University of Porto.
Professional career: Assistant Professor in Pharmacy, Technical Director of the Porto laboratory for wine analysis, Adviser to the Board of Directors at the Port and Douro Wine Institute. Author of over 50 publications.
OIV career: Portuguese delegate within the "Methods of Analysis" Sub-Commission since 1989, for which he became Scientific Secretary in 2009 and President in 2012.
Other achievements: Organisation of the OIV World Congress in Porto, member of the OIV National Committee in Portugal.
Qualifications: Doctor of Mathematics.
Professional career: Teacher and Researcher, Professor at the University of Naples and at Padua University in Conegliano.
Specialised in supply analysis in the fruit and wine sector. Author of 74 scientific publications.
OIV career: Italian delegate within the "Economy and Law" Commission since 2004, President of the “Markets and Consumption” Expert Group (2007-2012), President of the “Economy and Law” Commission since 2012.
Other achievements: Member of the National Committee for the protection and promotion of designations of origin.
Qualifications: Master's in Business Administration, Master's in Clinical Pharmacology.
Professional career: Teacher and Researcher; Lecturer at the University of Adelaide School of Agriculture, Food and Wine; Health and Regulatory Information Manager at the Australian Wine Research Institute. Author of more than 30 publications.
OIV career: Australian delegate within the "Safety and Health" Commission since 1999, Vice-President of the "Nutrition and Wine" Expert Group (2000-2006), President of the "Food Safety" Expert Group (2007-2012), President of the "Safety and Health" Commission since 2012.
Other achievements: Member of the various working groups on additives and allergens; consultant on health, nutrition and food safety for different vitivinicultural organisations.
Qualifications: Chemical engineering degree from the National Technological University (Regional Faculty of Mendoza)
Professional career: built within the National Vitiviniculture Institute, in particular, as coordinator of oenological studies and sensory analysis, in the analytical and technical departments, and in conducting research and monitoring duties. Professor of Wine Technology and Sensory Analysis.
OIV career: expert and delegate within the "Oenology" Commission since 2004, qualified personality within the OIV Scientific and Technical Committee (2009-2012), elected President of the OIV in June 2012 in Izmir.
Other achievements: Head of the Vinandino national wine competition, member of the Argentine delegation for international negotiations regarding wine.
From Paris to Mendoza, going via Porto, Madrid, Verona, Bucharest, Izmir and Adelaide, over 30,000 kilometres stand between the above recipients of the Order of Agricultural Merit, yet they are all brought together as part of the OIV.