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What does certification mean?

Certification means that the plant material has a been subjected to a comprehensive process established, authorized and performed by a state or other governmental entity to minimize the occurrence of regulated pests and diseases in planting stock. State level certification focuses on testing for graft transmissible or systemic pathogens such as viruses.


Five states have grapevine certification programs – California, Missouri, New York, Oregon and Washington.


Common features of the programs:

  • Participation is voluntary

  • Registered blocks and foundations are visually inspected and/or tested for significant grape pathogens as defined by the state

  • Mechanism for tracking vines forwards and backwards

  • Isolation requirements from commercial plantings

  • Identity (true to typeness) requirements


State Certification Programs

The California Grapevine Registration & Certification Program handles the highest volume of certified grapevine material. Best estimates, based on nursery self reporting, are that approximately 50 million CDFA certified plants are sold annually. Regulations are described at:

Grapevine Registration and Certification Program from the California Dept. of Food and Agriculture


In New York, a certification program was reinstated in 2017.  Nursery stock is tested for grapevine fanleaf virus, tomato ringspot virus, tobacco ringspot virus, grapevine leafroll-associated viruses and grapevine red blotch virus. A presentation describing the program can be found at:

Clean Plants for the Future of the Eastern Wine and Grape Industry from Cornell University. 


In Missouri, a grape nursery stock virus disease certification program was started by the Missouri Department of Agriculture in 1989.  The regulations for this program can be found at:

Missouri Plant Law Rules from the Missouri Dept. of Agriculture (pages 7-8) 


In Washington and Oregon, the Grape Planting Stock Certification Programs are being revised to coordinate with similar programs in other western states, through a stakeholder working group made up of state regulators, university researchers and the wine and grape industry.  The process began in June 2016 and will result in harmonized rules (starting in 2019), making interstate shipping of grapevines easier while protecting the state from harmful pests and diseases of grapevines. More information is available at:

Grape Planting Stock Certification from the Washington Dept. of Agriculture 

Acquiring Healthy Grapes from the Oregon Dept. of Agriculture



2012 Working group meeting on certification at the 17th Congress of the International Council for the Study of Virus and Virus-like Diseases of the Grapevine (ICVG)

A working group from the NCPN for Grapes met for the first time on May 2, 2012, in Davis, California, to begin discussion on harmonization of the existing standards and development of a set of regulations that reflect NCPN policy on clean plant certification and nursery regulation. 

AGENDA May 2 2012
Draft MINUTES May 2 2012

There were two presentations at the meeting.  One presentation described certification programs in the European Union and a second one reviewed the certification programs in the United States and Canada.  Those presentations are posted below:
EU certification. Maher Al Rwahnih
US Canada Grape Certification. Nancy Sweet

Maher Al Rwahnih offered two handouts in connection with his presentation on certification programs in the EU. They are posted below:
EU Directive 2005
2008 EPPO Bulletin



The 17th Congress of the International Council for the Study of Virus and Virus-like Diseases of the Grapevine (ICVG) hosted by Foundation Plant Services, UC Davis, October 11, 2012 

"The North America Plant Protection Organization Guidelines for the Movement of Stone and Pome Fruit Trees and Grapevines into a NAPPO Member Country" - Raymond Johnson, Centre For Plant Health (Ret.)

"French regulation, registration and certication Procedures, controls and perspectives" - Laurent Audeguin, French Vine and Wine Institute.

"Validation of diagnostic protocols for the detection of grapevine viruses covered by phytosanitary rules" - Francesco Faggioli, CRA - Plant Pathology Research Center.

"Virus Elimination From Grape Selections Using Tissue Culture At Foundation Plant Services, University of California, Davis" - Susan Sim, Staff Research Associate, Foundation Plant Services, UC Davis.

"Biology of crown gall disease and its management of grape nurseries and vineyards" - Dr. Tom Burr, Professor of Plant Pathology, Cornell University.