terclim by ICS banner
IVES 9 IVES Conference Series 9 δ13C : A still underused indicator in precision viticulture  

δ13C : A still underused indicator in precision viticulture  


The first demonstration of the interest of carbon isotope composition of sugars in grapevine, as an integrated indicator of vineyard water status, dates back to 2000 (Gaudillère et al., 1999; Van Leeuwen et al., 2001). Thanks to the isotopic discrimination of Carbon that takes place during plant photosynthesis, under hydric stress conditions, it is possible to accurately estimate the photosynthetic activity. Ever since, δ13C has been widely applied with success to zonation, terroir studies and vine physiology research, but is still not widely used by viticulturists. This is quite astonishing by considering the impact of global warming on viticulture and the need to improve water management, that would justify a widespread use of δ13C.
The lack of private laboratories proposing the analysis, the cost of the technology, as well as the long analytical delays, have been detrimental to its development. Some laboratories tried to overcome the analytical difficulties of isotopic analysis by using fourier transformed infrared spectroscopy, as a fast and cheap alternative to the official OIV method (IRMS). These claimed FTIR models have never been published or peer reviewed and cannot be considered robust. In this work, thanks to the recent acquisition of IRMS technology, new modern and robust applications of δ13C for viticulture are proposed. This includes the use of the analysis to make parcel separations at harvesting, the possibility to increase the precision of hydric stress cartography and the potential cost reduction when compared with Scholander pressure bomb analysis. 


Publication date: May 31, 2022

Issue: Terclim 2022

Type: Poster


Tommaso Nicolato and Vincent Renouf

EXCELL Laboratory, Floirac, France

Contact the author


δ13C, water stress, isotopic analysis, irms, grapes


IVES Conference Series | Terclim 2022


Related articles…

Significance of factors making Riesling an iconic grape variety

Riesling is the iconic grape variety of Germany and accounts for 23% of the German viticulture acreage, which comprises 45% of the worldwide Riesling plantings. Riesling wines offer a wide array of styles from crisp sparkling wines to highly concentrated and sweet Trockenbeerenauslese or Icewines. However, its thin berry skin makes Riesling more vulnerable to detrimental environmental threats than other white wine varieties.  

Malolactic fermentation in wine production

What influence do these bacteria have on wines? What new bacteria are being studied to carry out this fermentation? Find below articles about malolactic fermentation published in our 3 media (OENO One, IVES Technical Reviews and IVES Conference Series). OENO One...

Metabolomics screening of Vitis sp. interspecific hybrids to select natural ingredients with cosmetic purposes

Introducing natural ingredients using green chemistry practices is a major challenge in cosmetics industry to follow the market trend. Among the plants of cosmetic interest, vine products show a remarkable diversity of natural substances with high potential for the cosmetic and dermatological sectors. To date, research focuses on well-known compounds like E-resveratrol and E-ε-viniferin,

WAC 2022: Abstracts are available on IVES Conference Series

In order to disseminate the scientific results presented during the WAC 2022 , the organizers have decided to share the abstracts of the oral communications and posters with Open Access on IVES Conference Series. The fifth edition of the International Conference...

Winemaking techniques and wine tasting methods at the end of the Middle Ages

Les pratiques de vinification et de dégustation du vin sont souvent perçues, à travers un discours marketing très puissant, sous l’angle d’une tradition millénaire qui perdure depuis le Moyen Âge. En Bourgogne, il est courant de rattacher les racines de ces pratiques à l’activité des institutions ecclésiastiques qui possédaient d