Device for wine stabilization

Wine fining and protection from oxidation are currently managed as a discontinuous process. The system is designed to stabilize wine by combining efficiency and waste minimization. Moreover, it is expected not to affect the sensory properties of wine and its valuable composition

Title of the patent Device for wine and other vegetable drinks stabilization and related process
Thematic area Agro-food
Ownership Alma Mater Studiorum – Università di Bologna
Inventors Andrea Balducci, Giuseppina Parpinello, Luigi Ragni, Arianna Ricci, Marina Serantoni, Andrea Versari.
Protection International
Licensing status Available for licensing agreements
Keywords Continuous flow system; Stabilization; Fining; Clarification; Adsorption; Wine; Vegetable Juices; Proteins; Metals; Waste reduction
Filed on Apr 19, 2018

Wine stabilization is a critical issue for winemakers. A temporary clarification can be obtained at bottling, but with time, a haze or unsightly sediment may occur, therefore there is a need for efficient procedures which enable long-term stabilization. The common approach consists in the addition of a fining agent, i.e. adjuvant (e.g. bentonite, gelatin, PVPP, silica gel), which can precipitate targeted molecules thus removing them from grape must/wine. After the treatment, the adjuvants need to be removed (by raking and filtration) and constitute a source of waste for winemakers. Wine oxidation is matter of concern for the enologists. Beside the allergenic effect, addition of antioxidants can delay oxidation, however the treatment is not considered to be resolutive in bottled wine. Wine stabilization and control of oxidation are managed by discontinuous process or actions and there is an increasing interest in settling a continuous system to improve the efficiency and sustainability of winemaking.

The invention refers to a continuous flow device for the removal of proteins, metals and other agents of instability of wine and vegetable beverages. The system is constitued by a tube containing inert support material, functionalized to increase its adsorption selectivity. The proposed system, working in continuous flow, determines a substantial reduction in treatment times, in waste production and ensure removing the causes of protein instability and oxidation in wine. Furthermore, the adsorbent material can be regenerated, guaranteeing more successive uses.

Scope of application: Enology and beverages sector. In particular the device can be used in small, medium and large winemaking cellars and also in fruit juice and vegetable juice companies. The device allows a preventive stabilization of the compositional and organoleptic characteristics of the wine, thanks to the selective removal of components responsible for instability. Unlike the systems currently in use, which use adjuvants and do not allow continuous flow treatments, the device has clear advantages:

Reduction of time for wine stabilization;

Reduction of vinification waste;

Lower operating costs of treatment;

Opportunity of renting the service.