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Smoke Taint Testing Solutions

Wildfire smoke affecting your vineyard?

Wildfire smoke can create unwanted flavors in wine, leading to canceled contracts, wine-production difficulties, and significant financial losses.

Smoke damage to wine grapes has become a major problem for the state’s wine industry. Insurance claims due to smoke taint have skyrocketed within the wine industry in recent years. Grape growers are subject to canceled contracts from wine producers if smoke taint is suspected, while winemakers need to have chemical analyses of affected grapes to plan for production.

Wine smoke taint testing

Wildfires in the West are becoming more frequent, larger in size, and longer-burning—measuring smoke impact on agricultural crops is increasingly important.

SC Labs proprietary method measures the natural product phenolic diglycosides that bioaccumulated in grapes, thus ensuring that you can make smart, validated decisions when harvesting and processing fruit. These ‘bound’ glycosides are typically non-volatile, but can be volatized during fermentation and aging, leading to unexpected smoke aromas and flavors.

The importance of proper testing and interpretation of results in wildfire-heavy years can financially make or break your vintage, so when you need help, reach out to the experts at SC Labs.

wine grapes

More options. Fast results.

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Smoke Taint test panel targets 6 compounds

  • 4-Methylguaiacol Rutinoside
  • 4-Methylsyringol Gentiobioside
  • Guaiacol Rutinoside
  • p-Cresol Rutinoside
  • Phenol Rutinoside
  • Syringol Gentiobioside
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Standardized test methodology for rapid, repeatable results

  • Liquid chromatography with triple quadrupole mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS)
  • Rigorous, routine process inspections and data audits

How should I take a sample?

Whether it be from vines, vineyard sections, grape bins, or juice/wine vessels, ensure you collect samples in a systematic way from various locations across your facility. If sending multiple samples, mark each container legibly with a unique ID.

For additional instructions, please reach out to your SC Labs representative or contact us.

Sample Size Requirements

TestMin Sample WeightMin Sample VolumeTurnaround Time
Smoke Taint (bound)300 g (grapes)30 mL (wine/juice)5 days

Our expertise is testing agricultural products and while our business is based on cannabis and hemp, adding grapes to our repertoire was a natural fit...What we’re providing to the industry is information—information and data so they can make important business decisions at every stage of the supply chain.

Jeff GrayCEO, SC Labs

Let’s talk about your testing needs

Our experts are always ready to answer your questions.