Strengthening research, technological development and innovation

The project in numbers
30 months
Start date: 01.10.17
End date: 31.03.20
N. Partner: 7
Budget FERS:

The project in numbers

30 months
Start / End: 
01.10.17 to 31.03.20
Project progress: 
Budget FERS: 


Promoting sustainable viticulture through ict in the ita-slo cross-border areas
Priority Axis 1

Promoting innovation capacities for a more competitive area

Specific Objective: 
OS 1.1.
Investment Priority: 
PI 1b
Overall Objective of the Project: 

The project aimed at promoting the capacity for innovation and the acquisition of new technologies by companies and SMEs in the Italian-Slovenian cross-border area by developing synergies and cross-border networks among companies operating in the wine sector, SMEs operating in the ICT sector, Research Centres, and Universities, and by encouraging eco-innovation processes that will ensure the more efficient use of natural resources and a reduction of the use of chemical products in agriculture.

Project summary: 

The project’s concept stemed from the need for the wineries participating in the project to make the transition towards more sustainable agricultural methods, as opposed to those currently in use, in order to fight the 2 diseases that usually affect the health of their crops and compromise the quality and quantity of their final products: downy mildew and powdery mildew. The PPs have acknowledged this need by establishing a stable cross-border cooperation network consisting of 17 companies, 2 research centres, and 1 university (subsequently expandable), which is committed to collaborating on the development of the business fabric and on scientific and applied research, with the common goal of researching innovative solutions to support the wine and agricultural sectors, with important repercussions for the entire program area. SUSGRAPE was therefore established in order to help companies operating in the wine sector adopt ICT vineyard management technologies, through experimentation with an agriculture Decision-Making Support System (DSS), as well as the relative technical training of the operators, implemented within 2 different agricultural areas near the Italian-Slovenian border. The DSS consists of an environmental monitoring system associated with the development of 2 agronomic forecasting models, which have been customised for the territories covered by the project and integrated within a special software application. The benefits of this system include a reduction in both CO2 emissions and the use of chemical substances in vineyard cultivation activities, as well as a reduction in water consumption for irrigation purposes, and an improvement in the health and quality of the final product.
SUSGRAPE also analysed the potential of applied microbiology in agriculture through the cross-border genetic analysis of the bacterial populations that characterise the grapevines, with the aim of obtaining the basis for the development of new biopesticides.

Main results: 

18 wineries of Italian Collio area, 1 winery from Slovenian Istria, 1 SME of ICT sector, 1 research centre in biotechnologies, 1 university, through the coordination of 1 research centre specialized in technology transfer, set up a network of cross-border cooperation which allowed:

  • the adoption and testing of the WiForWine SUSGRAPE technology in vineyard management, as a tool to support greater sustainability of necessary agricultural processes to prevent downy mildew and powdery mildew;
  • the start of "fine-tuning" process (for the specific microclimates of Italian Collio and Slovenian coastal area) of the 2 epidemiological forecasting models, developed as part of the project, to prevent the aforementioned vine’s fungal diseases;
  • take an important first step in microbiological research about bacterial population in vine leaves, aimed at contributing in the fight against downy mildew and powdery mildew through biological contrast agents.

12 training workshops were organized involving about 350 secondary school and university students:

  • 5 workshops were dedicated to agrometeorological monitoring technologies and agronomic forecasting modeling for the fight against vine plant’s fungal diseases;
  • 7 workshops on the potentiality of microbiological research if applied agriculture, with the aim of increasing the environmental sustainability of the same agricultural practices.


The SUSGRAPE partnership brings together key players from the R&D programme area (2 research centres and a university), SMEs operating in the ICT sector and companies in the wine sector. 

On the one hand, the University of Primorska and the ICGEB, under the coordination of Area Science Park and the collaboration of the wine companies, develop a research project that sees a joint use of laboratories as well as reciprocal temporary secondment of researchers. In addition, the "young" University of Primorska benefits both in terms of know-how and reputation from the collaboration with the ICGEB, an institution of international renown for research and training in genetic engineering and biotechnology.

On the other hand, the University of Primorska and Primo Principio, under the coordination of Area Science Park, develop agronomic forecasting models and transform them into software language within the WiForWine SUSGRAPE web platform, so as to facilitate consultation by the wineries which test forecasting models.

The Koper Chamber of Commerce and Area Science Park implement and coordinate all the communication activities, project promotion and dissemination of results.

The different skills provided by the partners are therefore complementary and consistently integrate each other for the pursuit of a common goal. Furthermore, the opportunity of cross-border cooperation amplifies the advantages deriving from the project with reference to the agronomic forecasting models customized for the territories being tested (Slovenian Istria and Collio Friulano). Such models are characterised by a very strong cross-border value because:

  • the model developed for Vinakoper may be used by winemakers in the easternmost part of the Italian coastline;
  • the model developed for the Italian Collio can be adopted by the winemakers of the Slovenian Brda.

In conclusion, SUSGRAPE has established stable cross-border collaborations between research institutions, universities, digital SMEs and companies in the wine sector.

Lead Partner

AREA di ricerca scientifica e tecnologica di Trieste


Project partner 1

Primo Principio Società Cooperativa


Project partner 2

Primorska Gospodarska Zbornica


Project partner 3

Univerza na Primorskem


Project partner 4

International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology


Project partner 5

Vinakoper Podjetje za proizvodnjo in prodajo vina, d.o.o.


Project partner 6

Consorzio Tutela Vini Collio



Poster evento annuale 30/05/2018Poster evento annuale 30/05/2018
( 584 bytes, published on 7 June, 2018 - 12:47 )
Cartello informativo apposto sulle centraline di monitoraggio in vignaCartello informativo apposto sulle centraline di monitoraggio in vigna
SUSGRAPE_cartello informativo_ITA-SLO.pdf
( 2 bytes, published on 18 December, 2019 - 10:17 )

Objectives and Activities


The project made it possible to support 19 wineries of Italian Collio and Slovenian Istria areas, in the adoption of ICT technologies designed for vineyard management. They tested the WiForWine SUSGRAPE Decision Support System (DSS) in the fight against downy and powdery mildew fungal diseases, moving towards more environmentally sustainable methods of agricultural processing. An important first step was also taken in the field of microbiological research on the bacterial population living in vine leaves. The research project was aimed at contributing to the fight against downy and powdery mildew through biological contrast agents.


Setting up of the DSS - WiForWine SUSGRAPE through:

  • installation of 42 agro-meteorological monitoring stations, autonomous in terms of energy and equipped with a system for transmitting collected data;
  • software programming of the WiForWine SUSGRAPE web platform for field data management with agronomic forecasting models embedded.

Database creation about the "microbiome" present in the leaves of some grape varieties of the Italian Collio and Slovenian Istria areas, through the isolation and storage at - 80 ° C of 264 microorganisms. Characterization of these microorganisms and creation of a sub-collection of interesting strains for biocontrol. Tests in vitro and in planta led to the identification of "SUS 239", a microorganism with potentialities in contrasting the 2 pathologies, and which could represent a basis for further and more in-depth research.


The project brought together 19 wineries and 1 IT company with the aim of working together in contrasting the 2 most impacting diseases in vine cultivation: downy and powdery mildew. A university was in charge of the scientific consultancy, while a technology transfer center of the general coordination. Competences and laboratory equipment complementarity between University of Primorska and ICGEB permitted the implementation of microbiology research project.


The collaboration between the ICT company and the wineries follows beyond project end through private agreements. Scientific collaboration in microbiological research between University of Primorska and ICGEB also continues.


AREA di ricerca scientifica e tecnologica di Trieste

0039 0403755111
Padriciano 99, 34149 Trieste, Italia
Scandella Denis

Primo Principio Società Cooperativa

0039 0799577782
PortoConte Ricerche Loc. Tramariglio S/N, 07041 Alghero, Italia
Longobardi Federico

Primorska Gospodarska Zbornica

00386 (0) 56625830
Ferrarska ulica 2, 6000 Koper/Capodistria, Slovenija
Tomaž Može

Univerza na Primorskem

00386 (0) 56117599
Titov trg 4, 6000 Koper/Capodistria, Slovenija
Matjaž Hladnik

International Centre for Genetic Engineering and Biotechnology

0039 04037571
c/o AREA Science Park - Padriciano 99, 34149 Trieste, Italia
Vittorio Venturi

Vinakoper Podjetje za proizvodnjo in prodajo vina, d.o.o.

00386 (0) 56630105
Šmarska cesta 1, 6000 Koper/Capodistria, Slovenija
Jadran Sever

Consorzio Tutela Vini Collio

0039 0481630303
Via gramsci 4, 34071 Cormons, Italia
Dario Maurigh