VinSense is an Indiana LLC formed in March 2015 to produce an innovative decision support software system for agricultural crop production. The new technology enables producers, field managers, and winemakers to make better crop management decisions to improve production volume, uniformity and quality and increase profitability and long-term sustainability.
The VinSense software, initially targeted at the wine grape growing and winemaking industry, will deliver the following value to our customers:
Our product is based on the latest soil, viticulture, enology and predictive analytics research, as well as the latest sensing technologies (in situ and remotely sensed). The key unique components of the system are the transformation of this data deluge into easily understood information relevant to crop and winemaking decisions and the incorporation of soil physics and hydrology, viticulture, and enological models to increase the relevance of the information and enable predictive analytics for management and planning. The user friendly visual interface and decision tools are being developed with “real world” producers to ensure that the data provided is relevant, understandable, and, most importantly, actionable.
Professors at Purdue University
David Ebert is the Silicon Valley Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Purdue University. He also directs the Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence in visual analytics and the Purdue University Visualization and Analytics Center.
Dr. Ebert is a leading expert in integrated, interactive data visualization and analysis, having deployed solutions for effective decision making in medical applications, veterinary applications, public safety, logistics management, weather, and emergency response. He is also very active in the visualization community, teaching courses, presenting papers, co-chairing conference program committees, and holding senior leadership positions in professional societies (IEEE, ACM).
The Purdue Wine Grape Team’s Professor of Enology, Dr. Butzke is a past president of the American Society for Enology and Viticulture and current chairman of the Indy International, one of the largest wine competitions in the world. His Extension responsibilities include professional engagement activities from local winery consultations to global winemaking projects. He is editor of “Winemaking Problems Solved” and author of the popular textbook “Wine Appreciation.”
Butzke has also been Director of Winemaking for Sakonnet Vineyards in coastal New England and a tenured faculty member in the world-renowned Department of Viticulture and Enology at the University of California, Davis.
Dr. Phillip Owens is a Research Leader at the Dale Bumper Small Farms Research Center at USDA ARS in Booneville, AK. His hydropedologic-based research utilizes soil landscape modeling coupled with GIS, remote sensing, terrain attribute analyses and geostatistics to relate soil spatial variability to landscape scale processes.
Through this research, Dr. Owens has developed a transformational soil mapping technology that predicts soil properties at a high resolution and relates the soil properties to functional responses of plants.
Dave Pramuk is a winery co-founder who oversees VinSense’s strategic business development, partnerships, marketing, and communications. “I look at our new vineyard technology not as a scientist per se but from the perspective of a winery and vineyard owner. Investment in our precision farming is helping our vineyard managers to make the crucial practical decisions that improve profitability and sustainability – and ultimately overall company value. In a new and rapidly changing world paradigm for agriculture, we all need to take advantage of the new scientific tools being made available to us in order to adapt and succeed as businesses. And, farming responsibly, conserving water, labor, and driving carbon back into the soil is the right thing to do for wine industry employees, customers and our fragile environment,” he says.
Pramuk, who was born and raised in Napa, is a 40-year wine industry veteran who has worked with large and family-owned operations in all aspects of the super-premium wine industry. He is a past Co-Founder, Co-Proprietor, and Marketing Director of Robert Biale Vineyards, a vineyards-based Napa Valley winery that went from garage level startup to its status as a leader in the heritage varietals category. Pramuk serves on the boards of the Oak Knoll District of Napa Valley and P.S. I Love You and has been a longtime contributor to communications and promotions for the Napa Valley Vintners and Zinfandel Advocates and Producers (ZAP), including helping to develop the new CDFA’s ZinfandelTrail.com.
Lise Asimont brings 20 years of winegrape industry experience to our company. She incorporates technology with traditional grape growing practices to drive field uniformity to make great wines in the vineyard. She is a past president of the American Society for Enology and Viticulture and has served on the ASEV and Unified boards.
Minerva Dorantes is a research soil scientist with the company. She takes soil field data and converts it into practical maps to support the development of viticultural interpretations across fields. She is passionate about teaching soil science to landowners and extensionists. For the past four years, she has been transferring knowledge and new technologies in soil conservation and spatial modeling to several institutions in Central America.