Hot-Water Treatment

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

hot-water treatment is used by quarantine authorities and vine nurseries to sterilize dormant grapevine cuttings or nursery plants. These are immersed in hot water at around 50 °C/122 °F, or slightly warmer, for a few minutes to destroy surface contaminants and for up to 30 minutes for internal diseases such as fungi and phytoplasma. Hot-water treatment is also used to control crown gall bacteria, nematodes, and phylloxera and other insects. The process is currently receiving much attention because it may be a way to control trunk diseases. There should be no damage to the plants if the temperature is accurately regulated and storage protocols followed. See also thermotherapy.