Published: Aug. 6, 2014

NMC-MSU to host conference on climate and technology in grape production

Northwestern Michigan College and MSU will host a conference, “Weathering the Climate: Cultivation and Technology in Grape Production,” Sept. 5 at the Hagerty Center at NMC’s Great Lakes Campus, 710 E. Front Street, Traverse City, Mich.

The conference features experts in agricultural technology, geography, horticulture, and other areas related to unmanned aerial systems technology and the science of grape production.

Sessions will include Climate Change and Potential Agronomic Impacts in the Great Lakes Region, Impacts of the 2014 Polar Vortex on Grapes: Lessons Learned, How to Manage Grapes for Our Changing Climate, and Unmanned Systems and Technology Applications in Viticulture.

There will be a vineyard demonstration of the application of unmanned systems at Chateau Chantal Vineyard and Winery, and a panel of grape growers will discuss practical applications of unmanned systems technology in vineyard management.

Conference speakers include Brian Matchett, MSU Institute of Agricultural Technology; Jeff Andresen, MSU Department of Geography; Imed Dami, Ohio State University Department of Horticulture and Crop Science; Paolo Sabbatini, MSU Department of Horticulture; Duke Elsner, MSU Extension; Ed Bailey, NMC Technical Division; and Tony Sauerbrey, NMC Unmanned Aerial Systems.

Grower panel members are Ben Bramer, Agrivine; Stan Howell, MSU Department of Horticulture; Mark Johnson, Chateau Chantal; Larry Mawby, L. Mawby Vineyards; James Peters, Straits Area Grape Growers Association; and Coenraad Stassen, Brys Estate Vineyard.

Registration for the event can be done online by visiting and following the links. Cost for the conference is $60; conference and dinner, $85. Rooms have been made available for conference attendees to reserve at the Bayshore Resort.