Electrochemical approaches in wine analysis
Maurizio Ugliano holds a Full Professor position at the University of Verona-Department of Biotechnology, where he teaches the Enology and the Wine identity and typicality courses. He is the Director of the University Bachelor Degree Program in Viticulture and enology. His research interests are in the area of wine chemistry, with a particular focus on the relationship between wine chemical composition, its geographical origin, and its longevity.
There is a high demand in the wine industry for analytical methods able to provide useful information to support the decision-making process in the vineyard and in the winery. Ideally these methods should be rapid (e.g. not requiring any sample preparation), cost-effective both in terms of required equipment and cost of analyses, and easy to implement.
Electroanalytical methods have been successfully applied to the analysis of wine antioxidants, in particular phenolic compounds. However, until recently, their application was restricted to research laboratory settings, due to the complexity of the analytical set up and procedures. The recent advances in the development of portable equipment and screen-printed disposable sensors have provided interesting opportunities to adapt this technique to the winery environment.
This lecture will cover different electroanalytical approaches of potential interest for the wine industry, with particular emphasis on voltammetric methods and their application to the monitoring of winery-relevant processes and parameters as well as for wine grade classification and varietal characterization. Additional possibilities will also be explored, in particular those related to the rapid classification of enological products such as commercial tannins or oak derivatives. Along with highlighting the benefits and drawbacks of the techniques presented, novel integrated approaches will be discussed. In particular, the combined use of advanced multivariate data analysis and artificial intelligence can unlock the capabilities of voltametric methods in the development of approaches of predictive enology. Among these, the possibility to develop tools for wine shelf-life prediction will be discussed.