Photo Credit: Thomas Schaefer on Unsplash

German wine professor Monika Christmann has been named the new keynote speaker in oenology for the upcoming International Cool Climate Wine Symposium (ICCWS) hosted at Brock University.


The ICCWS, which will take place from July 12 – 16, 2021, will be held on Brock’s main campus. The symposium will feature four days of scientific content, as well as networking events and pre- and post-conference programming to highlight Canada’s diverse grape and wine regions. More than 50 scholars in cool climate grape and wine research will be speaking at the conference in keynotes, seminars, masterclasses, workshops and as panelists.


Established in 1984, the symposium takes place in a different country once every four years. Brock won the bid in 2016 to be the host site for the conference in 2020, thanks to a collective effort from its Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute (CCOVI) and stakeholder organizations across Canada. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the symposium was postponed from its originally scheduled date in 2020 to July 2021.


Christmann has served with the International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) since 1995, where she is now vice-president and head of both the Department for Oenology and Wine Technology and the Winery at Hochschule Geisenheim University. Her discussion at the symposium will fall under the heading, ‘Preserving Cool Climate Wine Styles in Times of Climate Change’.


“I feel very honoured to be invited as a keynote speaker to this upcoming ICCWS,” said Christmann. “Around the world we are all experiencing dramatic situations due to climate change. So, it is of greatest importance to share our knowledge within the vitivinicultural sector to minimize problems and ensure a good future.”


David Heatherbell, principal founder of the ICCWS, expressed his pleasure at the fact that Canada won the bid to host the ICCWS 2021.


“I cannot think of a more appropriate host nation and venue than Canada,” said Heatherbell. “As an emerging wine region receiving increasing recognition for its cool climate wine styles and with Brock University having had the vision to create the Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute for research and teaching, it is much deserved.”


The focus of the ICCWS 2021 will be on ensuring the vitality of cool climate winemaking and grape growing in the face of changing climatic conditions.


“A central theme of the conference is how adversity drives innovation to achieve success across the entire grape and wine value chain,” said Debbie Inglis, Chair of the ICCWS Advisory Organizing Committee and Director of CCOVI. “The Canadian grape and wine industry has long had to be nimble and resilient to succeed in a challenging and ever-changing industry. I look forward to sharing innovative research with our colleagues from around the world and showcasing the Canadian grape and wine industry at the same time.”


Heatherbell, who will be attending the upcoming conference and participating in the opening ceremonies, indicated how impressed he is by the work being done at CCOVI and the breadth of programming developed for the conference.


“I am pleased to see the symposium retain its identity and relevance and that this 10th symposium also recognizes the need for innovation and adaptation to meet new challenges in viticulture and oenology,” said Heatherbell. “It will energize and foster development of industry, institute and university programs and further enhance the Canadian story and the recognition of Canada as a significant emerging wine country.”


The detailed program for the upcoming ICCWS 2021 is now available, giving individuals a look at the research and programming opportunities that will be available at the conference. Interested individuals are encouraged to visit to find the program and learn more about the upcoming symposium.