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A Papua Forest Dragon (Hypsilurus papuensis). Photo by Alex Slavenko

A Papua Forest Dragon (Hypsilurus papuensis). Photo by Alex Slavenko

The most comprehensive atlas of reptilian species has been created by an international research team led by an Israeli scientist.

By ISRAEL21c Staff

An international project initiated by an Israeli professor has resulted in the most comprehensive catalog and atlas of every reptile on Earth, including 10,000 species of snakes, lizards, and tortoises and nearly 32,000 land vertebrate species altogether.

An international team of 39 researchers worked on the new “Atlas of Life,” as described in Nature Ecology & Evolution.

The atlas links the new reptile information with existing maps for birds, mammals and amphibians. The resulting information provides a missing piece to the puzzle of global conservation planning and prioritization.

A gecko (Cyrtodactylus bintangtinggi) from Malaysia. Photo courtesy of BGU

A gecko (Cyrtodactylus bintangtinggi) from Malaysia. Photo courtesy of BGU

“Mapping the distributions of all reptiles was considered too difficult to tackle. But thanks to a team of experts on the lizards and snakes of some of the most poorly known regions of the world, we managed to achieve this, and hopefully contribute to the conservation of these often elusive vertebrates that suffer from persecution and prejudice,” said Prof. Shai Meiri, the Tel Aviv University zoologist who first planned and has been leading the project for the past 10 years.

This snake is a Vipera ammodytes. Photo by Alex Slavenko

This snake is a Vipera ammodytes. Photo by Alex Slavenko

Tel Aviv University, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology all had representatives on the research project.

The International Union for the Conservation of Nature is currently classifying the species featured in a free online map, rating them from “critically endangered” to “least concern.”

According to lead author Uri Roll, a fellow in desert ecology at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev’s Jacob Blaustein Institutes for Desert Research, “Lizards typically tend to have weird distributions and often like hot and dry places, so many of the newly identified conservation priority areas are in drylands and deserts. This isn’t as much of a characteristic for birds or mammals, so we couldn’t have guessed that in advance.”

Atlas of all Land Vertebrates. Graph courtesy of BGU

Atlas of all Land Vertebrates. Graph courtesy of BGU

Roll also analyzed the overlap of different land-vertebrate groups with current conservation priorities and protected areas to explore the outcome of these initiatives. “It turns out that reptiles fare worse than mammals and birds, and within that lizards and turtles fare the worst.”

To address these deficiencies, the researchers constructed a new prioritization plan. “We discovered that arid and semi-arid regions in various parts of the world have been under-prioritized for conservation and we will need to reevaluate our broadest conservation initiatives,” said Roll.

Cataloging Every Snake, Lizard and Tortoise on Earth

Still from the YouTube video " Carrefour, the uniform that cares " by Saatchi & Saatchi IS

Still from the YouTube video "Carrefour, the uniform that cares" by Saatchi & Saatchi IS

Jerusalem-based Argaman Technologies’ bio-inhibitive cotton is being made into facial masks, hotel linens, uniforms, active wear and much more.

By Abigail Klein Leichman

The constantly intensifying battle against viruses and antibiotic-resistant “superbugs” isn’t only about finding stronger drugs against infection. The focus is moving to preventing infections in the first place.

That’s why large companies such as Carrefour and a Far East luxury hotel chain are looking at unique germ-vanquishing textiles invented by Jerusalem’s Argaman Technologies and manufactured inside its custom-built factory.

Carrefour Group, a French-based superstore chain with 12,000 retail stores in 30 countries, is testing Argaman’s CottonX — billed as the world’s first bio-inhibitive 100 percent cotton – in a line of uniforms dubbed “The Uniform that Cares.”

Textile engineer Jeff Gabbay, founder and CEO of Argaman and inventor of CottonX, led ISRAEL21c on an exclusive tour of the factory, where enhanced copper-oxide particles are ultrasonically and permanently blasted into cotton fibers using an environmentally friendly technique.

Argaman Technologies’ machinery was custom designed for cavitating cotton with active copper oxide. Photo: courtesy Israel21C

Argaman Technologies’ machinery was custom designed for cavitating cotton with active copper oxide. Photo: courtesy Israel21C

Ninety-nine percent of bacteria and viruses are killed within seconds of coming into contact with copper oxide, and bacteria cannot become resistant to copper oxide as they do to antibiotics, Gabbay explains.

Hospital-acquired infections cost US hospitals about $25 billion annually. A trial by the US Centers for Disease Control has recently been completed, checking the effectiveness CottonX sheets, pillowcases, and pajamas to reduce hospital-acquired infections. Results will be published soon.

CottonX is the first-ever bio-inhibitive 100% cotton. Photo courtesy of Argaman Technologies

CottonX is the first-ever bio-inhibitive 100% cotton. Photo courtesy of Argaman Technologies

Face masks for China

CopperX is being developed into reusable, comfortable face masks for the Greater China market, where airborne pollution is a major problem, says Edwin Keh, head of the Hong Kong Research Institute for Textiles and Apparel.

This government-run, nonprofit applied research and commercialization center was introduced to Argaman last year as the result of the industrial R&D memorandum of understanding signed by Israel and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region of the People’s Republic of China Hong in February 2014.

One of the largest garment manufacturers in the world, also based in Hong Kong, became a strategic investor in Argaman.

These masks kill, rather than filter, viruses and bacteria as they pass through. Photo courtesy of Argaman Technologies

These masks kill, rather than filter, viruses and bacteria as they pass through. Photo courtesy of Argaman Technologies

Keh tells ISRAEL21c that in addition to the masks, his institute also is testing the applicability of the self-sterilizing, hypoallergenic CottonX material in airline cabin interiors and in hotels.

“Our intention is to license the Argaman technology and marry it with some manufacturing and processing technologies on this end to produce commercial-scale products – probably curtains, towels and bedding — to keep environments more hygienic.”

Edwin Keh, head of the Hong Kong Research Institute for Textiles and Apparel. Photo: courtesy

Edwin Keh, head of the Hong Kong Research Institute for Textiles and Apparel. Photo: courtesy

Keh says he hopes to pursue collaborations with additional Israeli companies offering advanced technologies for the textile industry, especially in water management, spinning, dyeing, weaving and cotton agriculture.

“We want to make a success story out of our collaboration with Argaman and we hope it will be the first of many,” says Keh.

Fire-resistant, wrinkle-fighting

Keh is also interested in some other properties of CottonX aside from germ control.

Embedding varying concentrations of copper dioxide also makes the fabric fire-resistant, electricity conductive (potentially useful for medical monitoring and military markets) and capable of banishing facial wrinkles and even cellulite.

“We know how much active ingredient we need in the fibers to be effective for different purposes, from banishing wrinkles to killing stubborn bacteria. By being able to control the active ingredient content we can assure completely consistent quality in everything we do,” says Gabbay.

CottonX healthcare socks for preventing athlete’s foot and diabetic foot ulcers will soon be launched. Cosmetic textiles — facial mask, pillowcase, gloves, socks and scarf, each premium packaged with an all-natural bio-inhibitive cream infused with accelerated copper oxide – are being developed jointly with a US company headed by a former L’Oréal and Revlon executive.

Argaman also is in discussions with a global fashion firm to create a new “lifestyle” brand of products.

The Argaman Technologies team in its Jerusalem factory. CEO Jeff Gabbay is fourth from right. Photo: courtesy

The Argaman Technologies team in its Jerusalem factory. CEO Jeff Gabbay is fourth from right. Photo: courtesy

Still in the development stage at Argaman are garments that can deliver transdermal chemotherapy or other pharmaceutical treatments and an optic-fiber-embedded material that could deliver phototherapy to psoriasis patients or to jaundiced newborns.

Argaman is a member of a new five-year consortium established in the Israel Innovation Authority’s MAGNET program, which aims to unite technology and industrial companies with academic research institutes to develop technologies for producing “smart” fabrics.

“Not only are we built to take the concepts from academia — plus a lot of our own ideas — to the level that industry needs but we also have the ability in-house to supply all industrial members the understanding of the science, samples and industrial quantities of the new materials should the concepts go commercial,” Gabbay says.

For more information, click here.

Article courtesy of  www.Israel21c.org

Article courtesy of www.Israel21c.org

Israel's Argaman Technologies develops a cotton that kills germs and viruses on contact

Lodologic’s team in Sao Paulo, from left, Gabriel Kainuma, Plinio Pimentel and Ayrton Junior. Photo: courtesy of Lodologic

Lodologic’s team in Sao Paulo, from left, Gabriel Kainuma, Plinio Pimentel and Ayrton Junior. Photo: courtesy of Lodologic

By next year, several Brazilian sewage plants will incorporate Lodologic systems to change sludge into odorless, pathogen-free fertilizer for crops.

By Abigail Klein Leichman

Ready for a really yucky statistic?

Sixty percent of the 6.8 million liters of daily sewage sludge generated in Brazil gets dumped back into nature untreated. And even that is a big improvement over the situation five years ago.

Now the South American country is poised to clean up its sewage problem using an Israeli invention for transforming human waste into odor-free, sterilized farm fertilizer.

Incorporated in February, Lodologic was established by a group of Brazilian companies in partnership with Paulee CleanTec in Israel. (“Lodo” means “sludge” in Portuguese.)

“Paulee CleanTec has a proprietary process to oxidate organic residue. We’re going to apply that process to sludge,” Lodologic CEO Gabriel Kainuma tells ISRAEL21c from his office in Sao Paulo.

“We mix a chemical reagent with the sludge and blend this mix in a high-speed chamber that eliminates all pathogens in the sludge, transforming it into safe, affordable, effective fertilizer,” he says.

“By 2018 we expect to be operating in at least six plants. There are over 400 sewage treatment plants in Brazil, so we have a huge market here to explore.”

A sewage treatment plant in Brazil. Photo courtesy of Lodologic

A sewage treatment plant in Brazil. Photo courtesy of Lodologic

Sludge (biosolids) is a byproduct of sewage treatment plants -- the waste removed from wastewater. While the treated water can be safely discharged to waterways or reused for other purposes, sludge has to be disposed of or treated separately onsite. An environmentally friendly option is composting, but this takes a lot of time and space. And it smells bad.

“Decades ago, when sewage treatment was only taking its first steps, sludge was dumped into international waters,” Paulee CleanTec CEO Ilan Levy tells ISRAEL21c.

In many Latin American countries, he says, dumping sludge into the ocean still is standard practice, and even happens unintentionally in places such as California when heavy rain causes sewage systems to overflow.

“Nobody knows what to do with the enormous amount of sludge generated every day,” says Levy. “The general solution is to send it to landfills. We are changing the logic by turning sludge into something of value.”

Wastewater treatment in Brazil, where Lodologic is changing the paradigm. Photo: courtesy of Lodologic

Wastewater treatment in Brazil, where Lodologic is changing the paradigm. Photo: courtesy of Lodologic

One technology, three uses

Paulee CleanTec is the Tel Aviv company that developed an invention by Hebrew University Prof. Oded Shoseyov for turning dog dung into sterile, odorless fertilizer pellets on the spot, using a pooper-scooper with an oxidation unit attached. This innovation is now going into production through a partnership with Ohio-based OurPets.

In 2014, Paulee CleanTec partnered with San Francisco-based CB Engineers to create Epic CleanTec,  which will soon install a unique system in a San Francisco high-rise apartment house to treat sewage and use the resulting fertilizer for onsite landscaping. The system will redirect the used water for toilets, irrigation and cooling towers; and will reuse the output heat for the building’s hot-water supply.

Lodologic, Paulee’s second affiliate company, “is a different application, on the municipal level, using totally different machinery,” Levy explains. “Sewage systems are overloaded and new approaches are needed. We need to increase the number of people they can serve. So we attack the problem from different angles.”

Lodologic machinery is designed to convert all types of sludge from sewage treatment plants or biogas plants into odorless, organic, low-cost agricultural fertilizer within minutes.

The Brazilian company, self-financed for now, also will offer its customers a distribution structure for the fertilizer.

“We’re developing equipment to retrofit existing sewage treatment facilities,” says Kainuma. “Usually a conveyor puts the sludge into a truck to take it away. We’re going to position our equipment to receive the sludge from the conveyor in the same place where the truck would have been. So there is very little modification needed to the plant.”

The first operation is expected to go live by the end of 2017.

“We have a team of four and are hiring more to accelerate development,” says Kainuma, a Brazilian robotics engineer who formerly worked in the automotive industry.

Other countries are likely to be watching the project in Brazil closely. While Brazil produces 2.5 million tons of sludge per year, the amounts are much higher in countries such as China (9 million tons per year) and the United States (8 million tons). The European Union generates about 12 million tons of sludge every year.

Lodologic >  

Article Courtesy of  www.Israel21c.org

Article Courtesy of www.Israel21c.org

Brazil Looks to Israeli Tech to Solve a Stinky Problem

Chief winemaker Lior Lacser. Photo courtesy Carmel Winery

As you stroll from building to building at Carmel Winery you might be treated to the site of Lior Lacser, Carmel’s chief winemaker, hurrying by. Stall him with a question, and Lior may demur: “I’ve got to go . . . I’ve got to go!”—as pressed for time as the White Rabbit from Alice in Wonderland. Lior is young and intensely focused—refreshingly impatient with visitors—he obviously has big things on his mind.

Laxer oversees wines made from Carmel Winery’s nearly 3,500 acres of vineyards, from the Upper Galilee in the North to the Negev in the South.

Rehabilitating the behemoth of Carmel took great expertise and concerted drive. Originally from Tel Aviv, Lior studied in Burgundy, and has worked at wineries in Bordeaux and Australia. He oversees wines made from Carmel’s nearly 3,500 acres of vineyards, from the Upper Galilee in the North to the Negev in the South. His inner sanctum is by the small tanks for experimentation at Carmel’s microwinery. This is where Lior can let his brilliant fantasies run loose, blending new grapes being grown high in the hills to create the wines for Carmel. 

Carmel Winery >

Lior Lacser of Carmel

The Bedouin village of Hura, where Muhammad al-Nabari has been the mayor since 2005. Photo by Romayan, courtesy Creative Commons

Mayor Muhammad al-Nabari of Hura grew up in this predominantly Bedouin town, but in his teens came to the conclusion that there was no future for him in the Negev. He moved north to attend high school, and then—to his family’s immense pride—went on to attend Hebrew University and later Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, where he earned a Ph.D. in organic chemistry. After graduation, he took a job at a prominent pharmaceutical company—but, he says, “I never cut myself off from my identity as a Bedouin.” Al-Nabari was living near Hura, and running an advocacy group for higher education among the Bedouins. In 2005 he ran for mayor of Hura—but didn’t take the idea seriously; in fact, he didn’t even bother leaving his job when he began his campaign. “I never believed I would get elected!” he admits. He was wrong.

I never cut myself off from my identity as a Bedouin.”
— Muhammad Al-Nabari, Mayor of Hura

After more than a decade under al-Nabari’s leadership, Hura—though still one of Israel’s poorest communities—has become a model of how local government can be run. With financial assistance from sources including the Jewish National Fund and other Jewish organizations in the United States and United Kingdom, Hura now boasts a community center, a public library, and the highly successful Ahad High School for Science, which accepts gifted Bedouin students from all over the Negev. Education is central to progress and hope for Hura—as for the entire nation—as al-Nabari well knows. “I have told my principals to be responsible for students even after they graduate,” he says. “We check to see how many go on to college and careers.”

Hura has a way to go: there is still poverty and much unemployment to contend with here, and the Bedouins’ relations with the Israeli government are uneasy at best. But al-Nabari believes that it is a waste of time and energy to dwell on who’s to blame or what is not working. He says: “If you focus on the discourse [of] ‘They screwed me over; they discriminated against me’—then you’ll stay with the problems and have no solutions. . . . It’s very easy to put the blame on others, but if we do our jobs and then fight for what we need from the government, gradually the situation will improve.”

 

Muhammad al-Nabari, the Forward-Thinking Mayor of Hura

Scientist Ellen Graber of the Volcani Center with biochar agriculturist Nadav Ziv. From the film  Solutions from the Land

Scientist Ellen Graber of the Volcani Center with biochar agriculturist Nadav Ziv. From the film Solutions from the Land

Ellen Graber is a founder of the Israel Biochar Research Network (iBRN). She is a highly charged, dynamic, and thoughtful woman—a prudent scientist who understands that we don’t yet know all there is to know about putting biochar into our soil. She cautions that it is not a “magic bullet” that will solve all our agronomic and climatic problems. But she also recognizes that the potentials of biochar are enormous. In 2013 Ellen was named Scientist of the Year by the Academic Committee of the Volcani Center for her work with what she calls the “biochar vision.” Volcani scientists and the iBRN are looking into biochar’s long-term effects in the earth, its impact on soil-borne and foliar diseases, how it acts in compost, and much more. They are also considering the major economic impact that biochar might have in the long run.         

Ellen Graber and the Volcani Center are at work on a number of critical challenges facing our planet, from water shortage to the energy crisis to climate change to feeding the planet.

Ellen and the Volcani Center are at work on a number of critical challenges facing our planet, from water shortage to the energy crisis to climate change to feeding the planet. As at so many other Israeli science centers, it is understood that whatever answers are uncovered here will have an effect not only in Israel, but around the world. In its best form, scientific research—unlike politics—is not bound by frontiers. Borders, after all, are not eternal, but knowledge is. Good researchers understand how vital it is to share what they learn: to give and receive. Luckily, Ellen Graber is there, looking out for us. 

Israel Biochar Research Network > 

Volcani Center >

Stills from the film Solutions from the Land, available with the purchase of The Desert and the Cities Sing: Discovering Today’s Israel

Scientist Ellen Graber and the Potentials of Biochar

Chef Yuval Fachler. Photo by Yron Brener

Yuval Fachler is a young chef with profound talent and spotless credentials. Born in California and brought up in Tel Aviv, he studied at the Culinary Institute of America, and from there traveled widely, seeking out the best chefs and kitchens to learn from—in California, Italy, and London. He wound up, at the age of thirty-two, cooking at Tel Aviv’s beautiful Herbert Samuel restaurant.

I’m not interested in just creating a restaurant. The idea is to create an experience.
— Yuval Fachler, chef, founder of Salva Vida

A spry young man with a slightly cragged face and a workaholic’s touch of premature gray in his hair, Yuval has worked in Michelin-starred restaurants, kitchens and homes outside of Israel. He recounts one very important lesson learned from a home cook in Italy:

The sous chef at the restaurant where I was working in Italy used to invite me to his wife’s house for big family dinners in the garden, under a huge gazebo. The old father of the family would carve up the roast duck—a duck that they had raised themselves, of course. There was a big oven outside, so huge that you needed two people to take out the lasagna. And after the dinner, the mamma would go into the fields to pick some fava beans—I guess as a kind of digestif. Straight from the fields. It was just unreal: too beautiful, too pure!

Like many contemporary chefs, in Israel as in the rest of the world, Yuval is very conscious of using local ingredients—which are fresher, healthier, better for the local economy—and most important, tastier. (Learn more in Eat, Sleep, Play.)  

Today, Yuval has branched out on his own and is developing a model that is startlingly new—and at the same time age-old; it is called Salva Vida. “I’m not interested in just creating a restaurant,” Yuval says. “The idea is to create an experience that—even besides the food—customers will seek out again and again.” At Salva Vida, the menu is based as much as possible on foods produced, not just locally, but at the very spot where you are eating.

The wonderful culinary sophistication of a chef’s restaurant—complete with the finest wines—in combination with the deep and primal joy of eating food plucked from the earth just minutes ago. World-class stars of cuisine, meet the brilliant Italian mamma gathering fava beans (as her mother did, and her mother’s mother, on back forever). Innovation, meet tradition—shake hands, you’re going to love each other.

Yuval Fachler > 

Photos by Yael Rivnay, courtesy Yuval Fachler

Chef Yuval Fachler

An outdoor class at Nitzana Educational Center. Photo by and © 2016 Vision Studio

David Palmach, Nitzana Educational Center’s director, has an intense, tigerlike presence; you can immediately feel that this is a man with a vision, fully ready to enact Lova Eliav’s concept of Nitzana as “a school to teach respect for humanity and its place in developing the arid wilderness.”  

There are Christians, Muslims, and pagans here. We are open for them. They should feel like what they are, where they come from. I don’t want to convert them. That’s not the idea. To be a human being—that’s the main idea.
— David Palmach, Director, Nitzana

At the Nitzana Educational Center’s Solar Park complex, young children are taught the concepts of living well and sustainably. The school’s huge swimming pool, heated by solar panels, is bright blue and inviting. One of the outdoor classrooms has a rather unusual feature: the chairs are elegant, purple-lidded toilet seats—something visiting children are likely to remember for a long time! (This, of course, is the class that deals with wastewater and solutions to the world’s water crisis.)

Classroom “seats” for Nitzana’s course in water usage. Photo copyright © and courtesy Cookie West 

Nitzana’s handsome recycling center is nearby, with benches surrounding an inspiring wall of art made from recycled bottles, plastics, and other strangely gorgeous detritus. A very tangible lesson takes the form of a wall covered with two hundred empty liter-bottles. David explains: “I ask the kids, ‘How much water do you or your mom or dad use in one day?’ They have no idea. ‘About two hundred liters,’ I tell them. ‘And how much is that? Look how many bottles. That’s two hundred liters.’ . . . You get the idea. We try to open the box, to let them think outside it.”

While an important part of Nitzana’s mission is about exploring environmental issues through the lens of Jewish values, the team here is keenly aware of their non-Jewish neighbors and strives for peace with them. David tells us:

What’s the saying from the Bible? “Better a neighbor who is nearby than a brother who is far away.” That’s our situation here. We don’t bring non-Jews here and try to teach them Zionism and the Bible. We teach them about solar energy, science, sports—how to make a step into the near future and the far future as our neighbors. If you want to serve the Negev, help the neighbors. There are Christians, Muslims, and even pagans. We are open for them. They should feel like what they are, where they come from. I don’t want to convert them. That’s not the idea. To be a human being—that’s the main idea.

There is an overlook at Nitzana from which you can see the border with Egypt. Tracing the route outward is artist Dani Karavan’s stunning site work known as Way of Peace: a hundred sand-colored columns lined up along two miles of the desert. Each column is carved with the word peace in a different language.

Nitzana >

David Palmach, the Dynamic Director of Nitzana Educational Center

Vintner Adam Montefiore. Photo courtesy Adam Montefiore.

For a long time, Israeli wines were destined chiefly for sacramental purposes: they were produced in mass quantities and sold in supermarkets. There was little impetus to compete with wine producers outside of Israel. For many decades, just surviving was challenge enough.

If you compare where we were twenty years ago, and you think where we might be in twenty years’ time, it’s an absolute revolution that’s happening.”
— Adam Montefiore

Today, Israel’s wines can stand up to some of the great European vintages. What brought about this radical transformation?

Adam Montefiore was a chief instrument in the change. An English transplant to Israel, Adam has overseen turnarounds at the Golan Heights Winery and the Carmel Winery, both of which have won major awards in international wine competitions. As he says:

If you compare where we were twenty years ago, and you think where we might be in twenty years’ time, it’s an absolute revolution that’s happening. There’s not one winery in Israel that’s not making better wine than it did ten years ago.

Adam comes from a venerable family of wine lovers. One ancestor was the nineteenth-century British financier and philanthropist Moses Montefiore. According to Adam, Sir Moses drank a bottle of wine every day (and, perhaps not incidentally, lived to the age of a hundred). Adam concludes that his own passion for wine comes to him naturally, through his genes. That family passion continues in the form of the Kerem Montefiore Winery, which is run by Adam’s children, David and Rachel.

Today Adam writes about wine and heads several oenological consortia in Israel—he continues to earn his title: the ambassador of Israeli wine.  

Carmel Winery >

Golan Heights Winery >

Kerem Montefiore Winery >

 

 

 

Adam Montefiore, Game-Changer of Israeli Wines

Eran Goldwasser of Yatir Winery. Photo by and © Vision Studio 

Eran Goldwasser is the gifted young man who oversees Yatir’s vineyards and winemaking processes.

 Eran has brush-cut black hair and a handsome, happy smile. There is an air of contentment about him: he is clearly satisfying a deep personal passion with the wines he produces, utilizing the experience he has gained while working at wineries in Australia, and through his inspiring explorations in India and Japan. He is a happy and successful winemaker.

An arid region has an inherent advantage in limiting vine growth, and can potentially produce very high-quality wines.
— Eran Goldwasser, Yatir Winery

Eran explains that the dryness of the Negev Desert can actually be an advantage, if the balance of everything is right:

The goal in growing grapes that produce quality wine is to balance vine growth (both leaves and bunches) and create an efficient “sun-harvesting machine.” When supplied with too much water, the grapevine grows excessively and the grapes can’t fully ripen. It is no longer efficient in transforming sunlight into sugar, aroma, and color molecules. So an arid region has an inherent advantage in limiting vine growth, and can potentially produce very high-quality wines. But too much stress [from lack of water] can also throw the vine off-balance and hinder quality.

We describe Yatir Forest as a “semi-arid region.” It is not a desert, but the rainfall here—about twelve inches annually—is less than the Mediterranean standard. So, with a measured addition of drip irrigation, we are able to grow vines that are naturally balanced. That’s the basis of our winemaking.

Yatir Winery >

 

Vintner Eran Goldwasser of Yatir Winery in the Negev

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