Wine Industry Newsletter

Fresh faces to boost DPIRD wine RD&I

Introducing Yu-Yi Liao
Introducing Yu-Yi Liao

Born and raised in Taiwan, Yu-Yi grew up on her family orchard growing nashis, mandarins, table grapes, and other subtropical fruit.

After completing a degree in business at the National Chengchi University in Taipei, Taiwan in 2006, her adventurous spirit brought her to Australia as a backpacker to broaden her horizons and eventually to become an Australian citizen in 2015.

While working in the horticulture industry as a backpacker, Yu-Yi undertook many hands-on horticultural tasks such as pruning, fruit picking and packing across the south west while also gaining insight into local production systems.

Before completing a Diploma of Horticulture at Bunbury TAFE in 2012, Yu-Yi worked at a large nursery in Donnybrook which specialised in horticulture crops including native ornamental, vegetable and plantation plants. In the six and a half years at the nursery, Yu-Yi rose to be the Native Plant Motherstock program leader and plant health coordinator. Within this role Yu-Yi was tasked with pest and disease monitoring, formulating nutritional programs, propagation scheduling and conducting in-house trials.

Yu-Yi also spent a period of time working at a fruit packing company providing exposure to different varieties of fruit crops such as apples, avocados, kiwi fruit and tamarillos.

Yu-Yi is passionate about sustainability, supporting local producers and developing new skills. As a technical officer Yu-Yi will be working closely with research scientist Richard Fennessy in various grape and wine R&D activities while also supporting other DPIRD horticultural activities including apples and citrus.

Introducing Jesse Bowman
Introducing Jesse Bowman

Jesse Bowman is a recent addition to the DPIRD’s Viticulture Team as a development officer based at the department's South Perth office.

Jesse grew up in the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales, an area near the coast with subtropical rainforests and industries such as grazing, horticulture and sugarcane.

Jesse graduated from Southern Cross University with a combined Bachelor of Environment Science/Marine Science and Management in 2019, after which he undertook a graduate position with Queensland Farmers’ Federation Agricultural Extension Work Placement Program. Within this program Jesse joined Sugar Research Australia (SRA) in the Burdekin region, north QLD. During his tenure at SRA he was involved primarily in water quality monitoring at the paddock and sub-catchment scale. The purpose of Jesse’s work was to conduct water sampling and deliver results to growers with the goal of ultimately reducing nitrogen entering Great Barrier Reef catchments, while supporting sugarcane growers in a productive, profitable and sustainable way. 

 Professionally, one of Jesse’s main drivers is understanding challenges and issues that growers deal with and solving problems in a logical and efficient way. He has recently become interested in the role drone technology plays in agriculture and looks forward to experimenting with drones and investigating their potential uses in viticulture.  

Jesse will be primarily working with the WA table grape industry but will cross over into wine grape production especially on topics such as pest and disease, vine nutrition and irrigation.

Jesse is keen to learn about and support the industry to improve economic, social and environmental outcomes to the best of his ability and will be mentored by senior technical officer Colin Gordon and Richard Fennessy.