Clean Plant Center Northwest, Washington State University, Prosser
The grape industries of the northwest have undergone exponential growth in recent years. Washington State is now the second largest producing state of wine grapes and the largest producer of juice grapes. In 2001, following the discovery of a significant virus presence throughout the region, the wine, juice and table grape industries of the northwest implemented a long-term strategic plan to increase the availability of disease-free grapevine planting stock to meet northwest needs. The CPCNW Grapevines foundation program has been expanding rapidly to keep pace with the demand to establish new nursery plantings for the production of certified planting stock.
All acquisitions are greenhouse-grown and propagated by aseptic meristem culture. Virus and bacterial testing is performed by ELISA, PCR, and biological indexing, according to stringent Standard Operating Procedures. Clonal selections are then planted in both the foundation vineyard and foundation screenhouses. Tested propagation material is distributed annually to nurseries, other industry members and research programs according to an allocation policy stated on the CPCNW website.
The CPCNW Grapevines program primarily responds to the needs of the grape industries in Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, but material from the program is distributed to many northern-tier states. The program currently has 340 selections at various stages in the program; of these, 228 have been released and are available to the industry.