It is no news that conventional viticulture is one of the most demanding cultivations in terms of its overall plant protection spraying and heavy use of fungicides. Viticulture in Europe alone uses about 40% of the crop protection products in the whole of its agriculture. A French lobby Group presents an important example illustrating this point, stating that “France’s vineyards, which cover only 3.7% of the total agricultural surface area, account for about 20% of France’s chemical treatment use.”
Organic Grapes refrain from the use of such chemicals yet in order to combat the same issues, organic grape cultivation, remains challenging and growers have to use copper repeatedly, which can lead to other problems such as soil build-up. In addition, the small amount of registered products makes it difficult to alternate products to reduce disease resistance to fungicides.
In an effort to address these issues, Lema has created affiliations with growers in Italy and Greece that are transitioning to new fungus resistant varieties. Fungus-resistant grape varieties carry different genes that improve their resistance to fungal infections.