MW student Tao Platón wins the 2019 Lallemand bursary

27 Mar 19

The Institute of Masters of Wine is pleased to announce that Master of Wine student Tao Platón has won the 2019 Lallemand bursary.

IMW supporter Lallemand – a leading producer of wine yeast, bacteria and their nutrients, and a distributor of oenological enzymes – established the bursary in 2010. It was open to stage 1 and stage 2 students in the IMW’s study programme. Students were asked to write a 1,000-word essay on the following topic set by Lallemand: How can the use of wine bacteria for malolactic fermentation shape the style and improve the quality of a wine?

Tao is a stage 1 MW student and will receive £1,500 towards the cost of his MW student journey. He is the head winemaker at Peninsual Vinicultores. Prior to joining the company three years ago, Tao spent time making wine and learning different winemaking techniques in Bordeaux, the Spanish Duero, New Zealand and Burgundy. He graduated in oenology from the University of Valladolid and his passion is to contribute to a more authentic and sustainable world of wine.

On hearing he was the 2019 winner he said, “Receiving the Lallemand prize is a great joy because not only is it a financial help to continue with my studies, it gives me a greater focus ahead of the assessment this June. In addition, despite being a winemaker, studying the malolactic fermentation topic meant I had to expand my knowledge on the subject and it has been very constructive.”

Ann Dumont, Communications Director for Lallemand’s Oenology Division said, “The topic submitted to the students this year required a well-researched analysis of the latest information on malolactic bacteria, as well as showing the implication in wine production. Tao was able to research, analyse, reference and show examples of the impact of wine bacteria that uniquely covered all aspects. He was able to convert theory into a more applied side of the topic. It was well-written and structured, as well as well-referenced and researched.”

The announcement of the bursary winner comes as Lallemand have renewed their support to the IMW for another three years. Lallemand is a privately owned Canadian corporation present in most wine producing countries. Its Oenology Division, based in Toulouse, France, has a major focus on research and development, both in-house and in collaboration with renowned research institutes. They have been a supporter of the IMW for over 10 years.

Ann Dumont added, “The relationship with the IMW is a natural one for Lallemand. Sharing knowledge, being able to transmit it, being challenged to learn more and apply this knowledge in our work are all aspects that are entrenched in our culture, and feel that they are common links with the IMW. It is always with pride and respect that we continue the relationship we started building 12 years ago.”

Olivier Chapman, Head of Study Programme and Development and Acting Executive Director at the IMW said, “We are delighted that Lallemand are continuing as a supporter of the IMW. Master of Wine students, Members and the Institute more broadly benefit from this collaboration, with Lallemand offering events, scholarships and research opportunities to the IMW community.”


For more information contact:
Sarah Kirkpatrick
Head of Marketing, Communications and Membership
Institute of Masters of Wine
+44 (0)207 383 9131

Notes to Editors:

The Institute of Masters of Wine (IMW) is a membership organisation with an unsurpassed international reputation. Its Members – the Masters of Wine (MWs) – hold the most respected title in the world of wine. The IMW promotes excellence, interaction and learning across all sectors of the global wine community. MWs have proved their understanding of all aspects of wine bypassing the MW examination, recognised worldwide for its rigour and high standards. In addition to passing the examination, MWs are required to sign the code of conduct before they are entitled to use the initials MW. The code of conduct requires MWs to act with honesty and integrity, and use every opportunity to share their understanding of wine with others. There are currently 383 Masters of Wine today, working in 30 countries. The membership encompasses winemakers, buyers, journalists, shippers, business owners, consultants, academics, and wine educators. There are 359 students in the MW study programme from over 45 countries.


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