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03 December 2015 — OIV life

UIOE: 50 years in the service of oenology

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On the 50th anniversary of the International Union of Oenologists (UIOE), Co-Presidents Serge Dubois and Riccardo Cotarella met with the heads of the national associations of oenologists from 16 member countries of the Union at a General Assembly in Paris.

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In the presence of former presidents including Jacques Puisais, Ezio Rivella, Pietro Pittaro and Vicente Sánchez-Migallón, the current co-presidents stressed the importance that oenologists have acquired globally, having supported the development of the global vitivinicultural sector – from palliative roles with regard to shortcomings to those aimed at bringing out the best in winemakers, terroirs and vine varieties all over the world. Jacques Puisais was pleased to state that oenology was the only science that blended together all of the other fields: chemistry, physics, pedology, climatology, geography, history and many more...

The President of the OIV, Ms Monika Christmann, expressed that she was proud to be an oenologist and thanked the oenologists and the UIOE for their high level of involvement in the technical work of the OIV, having been able to appreciate their expertise when she headed the "Oenology" Commission of the OIV. Jean-Marie Aurand, the Director General of the OIV, also recalled how important the UIOE's role had been as an observer at the OIV, in particular in the definition of the profession and title of an oenologist on a global level, which had enabled the revision adopted in 2013. Serge Dubois indicated that the UIOE was going to strengthen its visibility at the OIV and would of course pay great attention to the adaptation of the international oenologist training programme currently under discussion.

The evening of the celebration of the 50th anniversary of the UIOE was also marked by the presence of the Minister for Agriculture of Uruguay, Mr Tabaré Aguerre, who highlighted the importance of the vitivinicultural sector in his country's agriculture. He also expressed his delight that the Uruguayan National Institute of Vitiviniculture was presided by an oenologist, José Lez Secchi, who is also Vice-President of the UIOE, and invited oenologists from around the world to participate in the OIV World Congress of Vine and Wine, which will take place in his country in 2018.

The International Union of Oenologists aims to represent national oenologist associations on an international level, to defend this professional category on all levels, to oppose abusive use of the title of oenologist, and to maintain cohesion, solidarity and relations between the different associations. Additionally, it seeks to act as a voice before the relevant national and international authorities so as to standardise biological processes as well as chemical, physical, microbiological and sensory methods of analysis, and to organise uniform oenologist training in different wine-producing countries by harmonising the content of studies, the duration of courses and the certificates issued, in order to ensure that oenologists may take responsibility for the execution and control of certain oenological processes.

From left to right José Lez Secchi, Guillermo Dighiero Arrarte (Uruguayan Ambassador), Serge Dubois, Tabaré Aguerre, Monika Christmann, Jean-Marie Aurand, Riccardo Cotarella