BRI is delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Darrell Lizamore as Principal Research Scientist – Grapevine Improvement.
Originally from the Stellenbosch wine region in South Africa, Darrell is currently a research officer at Lincoln University working on plant improvement. His work focuses on understanding how environmental stress events alter the DNA of plants and harnessing this potential to accelerate the production of new horticultural varieties. This approach is being trialled in four species, with grapevine as the model crop, and has resulted in an experimental population of new grapevine clones. “This is a unique opportunity to develop a world-class research centre for New Zealand’s wine industry. I am thrilled to be joining a skilled and highly-motivated team to be part of the story.” says Darrell.
As well as building a team and internal capability at BRI focussing on grapevine improvement, Darrell aims to build an integrated national programme bringing together capability in this area across different organisations. With potential benefits for quality, productivity, pest and disease resistance and resilience to a changing climate, grapevine improvement has the potential to make a significant impact to sustainability and the industry’s long term success.
Darrell will relocate to Marlborough with his family, and will join the BRI team at the end of August.