Minister of Research and Innovation visits Brock

From left: CCOVI scientist Jim Willwerth, CCOVI researcher Gary Pickering, Minister of Research and Innovation Reza Moridi, and St. Catharines MPP Jim Bradley during today’s tour of CCOVI.Ontario’s Minister of Research and Innovation Reza Moridi stopped by Brock today to see first-hand the applied research, inventions and innovation being undertaken at the University.During his visit, Minister Moridi checked out the Cool Climate Oenology and Viticulture Institute (CCOVI), Brock’s flagship interdisciplinary institute that supports the grape and wine industry. He also visited the University’s BioLinc bioscience business incubation facility located in the Cairns Complex, which is part of Innovate Niagara, a Regional Innovation Centre (RIC) and member of the Ontario Network of Entrepreneurs (ONE).His first stop was CCOVI where the minister toured Inniskillin Hall. During his tour he learned about the research and outreach activities that have made the Brock institute an internationally recognized centre of grape and wine research.Minister Moridi also visited the lab of CCOVI scientist Jim Willwerth who oversees the institute’s grapevine cold hardiness Vine Alert program. He also learned more about what Brock researchers are doing to better understand how climate change is impacting Ontario’s grape and wine industry. This work is supported by a $2.86 million grant from the Ministry of Research and Innovation’s Research Excellence program, which helps cover the cost of groundbreaking, internationally significant research.The Minister then stopped by BioLinc to learn more about the business incubator, which was created to establish closer ties between leading bioscience researchers and local entrepreneurs.Minister Moridi was in Niagara for the day where he also visited Niagara College and the Generator at one facility in downtown St. Catharines, which is also part of Innovate Niagara.