An artist’s rendering of the planned Vintner Village II incubator building in Prosser. The Prosser Economic Development Association plans to occupy one of the spaces. Richland’s ALD Architects designed the building. (Courtesy Port of Benton)

Port of Benton to break ground on $2 million development in Prosser

The Port of Benton plans to kick-start a new 21-lot development with a $2 million building in Prosser designed to attract boutique businesses to complement the neighboring Vintner Village. Construction on the new building, which will include three bays for businesses, as well as an adjacent office building for a nonprofit, is expected to begin […]

Read More
Hilan Piao, WSU research associate for the viticulture and enology program, takes samples of research wine for analysis at the Wine Science Center in Richland. The 40,000-square-foot facility boasts a state-of-the-art research and teaching winery, complete with labs, classrooms and meeting spaces.

Wine Science Center a boon to state viticulture, enology industry

The region’s wine leaders realized several years ago that an investment in students and research would ultimately lead to a more lucrative statewide industry. The students have come and the research is underway with the opening of the Washington State University Ste. Michelle Wine Estates Wine Science Center in Richland. “Industry leaders said, ‘We have […]

Read More
Washington state has produced more red wine than white since 2013, a trend that appears likely to continue into the foreseeable future. (Courtesy Wine News Service)

Washington’s wine production shifts firmly into reds

By Wine News Service Politically, Washington’s Columbia Valley has been the red part of a blue state for decades. And when it comes to wine, Washington has shifted firmly to being a red wine-producing state. The last year Washington produced more white wine than red was in 2012, and it’s likely to be the last […]

Read More
The $3.2 million West Richland industrial wastewater treatment plant, known as the I-Plant, opened before last year’s first crush. It’s a plant that treats all the effluent before any remaining waste gets processed through West Richland’s sewer system. (Courtesy city of West Richland)

Cities build wine waste treatment plants to lure wineries

By Sean Bassinger Even the sweetest wine has waste. That’s why two Eastern Washington cities have invested in special wastewater treatment facilities to handle wine effluent. It’s not a glamorous piece of the wine industry, but it’s a critical part of a continued multimillion-dollar effort to draw more wineries to the Tri-City area. The $3.2 […]

Read More
Scott Harper, a virologist, is the new director of Clean Plant Center Northwest in Prosser. He joined the center last month to oversee the center’s work to stop devastating crop viruses before they gain a foothold. These are Pinot Gris vines at Hogue Ranches in Prosser. (Courtesy WSU)

New clean plant center director hired to protect Northwest crops

The top priority for the new director of Clean Plant Center Northwest in Prosser is to increase the region’s supply of virus-free fruit trees, vines and hops. “The front line of the battle against viruses is clean material,” said Scott Harper, who was hired Jan. 3 to run the center at Washington State University’s Irrigated […]

Read More
How extreme temperatures — like this winter’s snowfall — affect the winemaking industry is the topic of a March 17 symposium at Washington State University Tri-Cities in Richland.

Symposium to focus on how climate extremes affect wine industry

Heat and cold extremes can be damaging to grapevines and affect fruit and winemaking decisions. A research symposium, “Climate Extremes: Is the Pacific Northwest Wine Industry Ready?” will take a closer look at the issue from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. March 17 in the East Auditorium at Washington State University Tri-Cities in Richland. Researchers […]

Read More