Development of an Enology Outreach Program
There has been a chronic underinvestment in extension and outreach for the wine industry. The specific goal of this proposal is the development of a comprehensive program for extension and outreach in enology. This comprehensive program includes an interactive web site that will serve both researchers in enology and winery personnel. With the plethora of information sources currently available on the internet, searching effectively and efficiently for pertinent and accurate information has become challenging. This site will function as a means to link researchers across the United States and internationally that have an active program or interest in enology. The aim of the site is to share information within the research and production communities, facilitate collaboration, eliminate unnecessary redundancy, and foster communication on issues of regional, national or global importance. The site was renamed ‘EnologyAccess’ ( http://enologyaccess.org/ ) and launched under this name with an inaugural webinar in August of 2008. In this past year we developed the interactive tools and social networking for the site (ea2) which will be launched in the next couple of months. We are actively migrating content to this site and providing links to extension specialist and researcher websites across the nation and the world. For this site to be more useful we will need to develop a stream of income that will support the site curation. This year we launched one of the signature programs of our new extension center, Wine Flavor 101. The first courses in this series were sold out and we received a response rate on the course questionnaire of over 70%. The surveys provided a wealth of ideas and constructive criticism for the programs which will assure their continued success. As we develop solid income streams we will be able to hire content curators and add more and more content to the site and offer an expanded line of programs. Progress on meeting our goals is slow but steady.