Welcome to Stellenbosch University

Department of Viticulture & Oenology & Institute for Wine Biotechnology

What is Viticulture and Oenology?​

Oenology is the science and study of all aspects of wine and winemaking, and viticulture entails vine-growing and grape-harvesting. "Viticulture and oenology" is a common designation for training programmes and research centres that deal with the industry holistically. ​

The Department Viticulture and Oenology (D​VO) ​​​​

The DVO is the only University-based department in South Africa that offers graduate and postgraduate courses in Viticulture and Oenology. The Department has at its disposal well-equipped research facilities, including experimental and commercial vineyards, a small-scale teaching experimental cellar and an industry-scale research and training cellar. Research projects are supported by competitive grants awarded to the Department by industry or government institutions. The Department enjoys national and international recognition, and maintains contact and research collaboration with many national and international universities and research organisations.  Mutual arrangements and agreements entail student and staff exchanges, as well as many collaborative research projects.

The Institute for Wine Biotechnology (IWBT)​​​

The IWBT, which forms part of the DVO, was established at Stellenbosch University in 1995 as part of a knowledge partnership and strategic alliance between Stellenbosch University, the wine industry (Wine Industry Network of Expertise and Technology: Winetech) and the South African government, in particular through Technology and Human Resources for Industry Programme (THRIP).  The IWBT is an internationally recognised postgraduate training and research institute offering visionary training and innovative research to support the South African wine and grapevine industries.

​​Programme information ​

Undergraduate courses​  ​​            

  • BScAgric Viticulture and Oenology (General)
  • BScAgric Oenology (Specialized)                                                 

Postgraduate courses

  • MSc or MScAgric
  • PhD
  • DSc


The main objective of the research activities within the DVO is to contribute towards enabling the South African industry to produce wines and vineyard products of high quality with the aid of environmentally friendly technology in the most cost-effective manner. Industry-linked research that can be implemented by means of technology transfer to the industry is undertaken at all times.

Research is multidisciplinary, and integrates traditional viticulture and oenology with disciplines such as physiology, biochemistry, molecular biology and biotechnology of grapevine, yeast and lactic acid bacteria, wine chemistry and sensorial sciences, and computational biology.

Viticulture. The generation of new, innovative and applicable knowledge of the grapevine and its cultivation is the focus of the viticultural research undertaken by the DVO. The focus of the research and experimentation in the field of vine sciences (wine and table grape) is on the effect of abiotic factors (light, temperature, wind and water) on the ecophysiology of vine functioning, berry growth and composition.

Oenology. The oenological research focuses on the influence of the vinification process (such as oxygen additions), micro-organisms (yeasts and bacteria), additives (such as enzymes and CMC) and maturation on wine composition, style and quality, as well as the effects of various factors on wine ageing. Researchers work closely with partners in industry and help to resolve issues facing winemakers at both a fundamental and a practical level. 

Contact Details

Department of Viticulture and Oenology (DVO)

Faculty of AgriSciences
Private Bag X1, 7602 Matieland, South Africa

Tel: +27 (0) 21 808 4545    


Institute for Wine Biotechnology (IWBT)

Faculty of AgriSciences
Private Bag X1, 7602 Matieland, South Africa​



NameTel.EmailFocus area

Eunice Avenant

021 808 Grapes
Prof Florian Bauer021 808 Molecular and Cellular Biology
Dr Erna Blancquaert021 808
Dr Astrid Buica021 808; Analytical Chemistry
Prof Benoit Divol021 808 Microbiology; Departmental Chairperson
Prof Maret du Toit021 808 Microbiology and Biopreservation
Prof Wessel du Toit021 808 Chemistry
Prof Antonio Chemistry
Marianne McKay021 808 Chemistry, Wine Aroma, Sensory Evaluation
Dr John Moore021 Biochemistry, Metabolomics
Dr Hélène Nieuwoudt021 808
​Dr Carlos Poblete-Echeverria
​021 808 2747
Dr Evodia Setati021 808 9203setati@sunWine Microbiology
Dr Albert Strever021 808 Cultivation and Remote Sensing
Prof Melané Vivier021 808 Molecular and Cellular Biology
Dr Philip Young021 808 Molecular Physiology, Biotechnology

Technical Staff



Anne Alessandri021 808 Officer: Viticulture & Oenology Internships
Jeanne Brand021 808 Lab
Lynn Engelbrecht021 808 Lab
Samantha Fairbairn021 808 Lab
Olwethu Fana021 Lab
Hugh Jumat021 808 Analytical Lab
Stevie Krynauw
021 772 analyst
Michelle Korkie021 808 Lab
Lindani Kotobe021 808 Control Lab
Edmund Lakey021 808; Experimental Cellar
Wandisa Maxiti021 Lab
Marisa Nell021 808; Experimental Cellar
Valeria Panzeri021 808 Lab
Hendrik September021 808 4868 Welgevallen Vineyards
William Smith021-808 2925 Welgevallen Cellar
Candice Stilwaney021 808 Lab
Dirk Swarts021 808 4868 Technical Assistant, Welgevallen Vineyards
Andy van Wyk021 808 Cellar
Riaan Wassüng021 808 Cellar
Anke Berry021 808 Lab
Dr Anscha Zietsman021 808 Molecular Lab

Administrative and Financial Staff

Geraldine Burton021 808 enquiries
​Lorette de Villiers
​021 808 3770
​​Postgraduate enquiries

Somi Radasi

021 808
Departmental Manager
Jacomi van der Merwe021 808




Egon Februarie

021 808 Coordinator & cleaning tasks at JH Neethling Building
Tania Jansen021 808 & catering tasks at JH Neethling Building
Judy Williams021 808 & catering tasks at Paul vd Bijl Building