Secrets of yeast no longer so

Researchers in South Australia claim to have unlocked the genetic code of wine yeast. That would mean scientists now can develop new strains of yeast to create wines for specific tastes and markets.

Sakkie Pretorius, managing director of the Australian Wine Research Institute, says the institution has decoded the 6,000 genes that make up the genome of a wine yeast.

"Our wines will probably be better shaped for what consumers will like," he said in a statement. "So first of all, it might be that our wines will now out-compete some of the competitors in export markets, and if our wines are improving in terms of quality, it means that maybe the profit margins of some of our producers that are now on the squeeze might . . . become more sustainable."

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