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Abstract

Despite the high likelihood of infection and substantial yield losses from trunk diseases, many California practitioners wait to adopt field-tested, preventative practices (delayed pruning, double pruning, and application of pruning-wound protectants) until after disease symptoms appear in the vineyard at around 10 years old. We evaluate net benefits from adoption of these practices before symptoms appear in young Cabernet Sauvignon vineyards and after they become apparent in mature vineyards to identify economic hurdles to early adoption. We simulate production in five regions of California and find widespread benefits from early adoption, increasing vineyard profitable lifespans, in some cases, by more than 50%. However, hurdles to adopt may result from uncertainty about the cost and returns from adoption, labor constraints, long time lags in benefits from early adoption, growers’ perceived probabilities of infection, and their discount rate. The development of extension resources to communicate these benefits and potential hurdles to growers are likely to reduce uncertainty, leading to increased early adoption.

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