David Jeffery

Associate Professor David Jeffery

Associate Professor in Wine Science

School of Agriculture, Food and Wine

Faculty of Sciences

Eligible to supervise Masters and PhD - email supervisor to discuss availability.


David completed a PhD on the development of methodology for the stereoselective synthesis of polypropionate marine natural products. He also has experience with the synthesis of aromatic heterocycles and a strong analytical chemistry background. David has worked in the area of aroma and flavour chemistry, undertaking and overseeing analytical method development, compound synthesis and isolation/characterisation of grape and wine components. Prior to that David undertook research on the chemistry of phenolic compounds in red wine relating to their organoleptic properties, further characterising structures and properties of wine tannins and expanding current analytical methods for studying such compounds. He uses these experiences for the isolation, identification, synthesis and analysis of interesting and complex molecules from nature, especially in the pursuit of improved knowledge about grape and wine chemistry.

David is involved in the isolation, identification, synthesis and analysis of interesting and complex molecules from nature. The application of synthetic organic chemistry, natural product isolation, structure elucidation and analytical techniques such as GC-MS and HPLC-MS are key components of his research. This extends to grape and wine components and development of methods for the analysis of aroma, flavour and phenolic compounds which are important to grape and wine quality.

David is particularly keen to develop fundamental chemical knowledge and techniques which can be directed toward understanding intricate natural phenomena. This includes the structure and function of wine tannins and the mechanisms underlying tannin rearrangements and pigmented polymer formation which impact on colour and mouthfeel properties of wine. Another area of strong interest involves improving knowledge of the formation and reactivity of aroma and flavour compounds, identifying potential sources and examining the impacts of processing.

Contact David to discuss any aspects of these research interests and to find out more about Honours or PhD projects relating to these diverse topics. Projects will appeal to students who want to continue their education in typical chemical fields such as synthesis and analysis, with potential for an applied context to help improve the scientific understanding behind a multi-billion dollar Australian industry. There are various scholarship opportunities for eligible students including supplementary scholarships periodically offered by the Wine Australia. Check the links for eligibility criteria and closing date.

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  • Appointments

    Date Position Institution name
    2017 Associate Professor in Wine Science The University of Adelaide
    2014 - 2016 Senior Lecturer in Wine Science University of Adelaide
    2010 - 2014 Lecturer in Wine Science University of Adelaide
    2009 - 2010 Senior Research Scientist - Team Leader The Australian Wine Research Institute
    2008 - 2009 Research Scientist The Australian Wine Research Institute
    2005 - 2008 Postdoctoral Research Fellow The Australian Wine Research Institute
  • Awards and Achievements

    Date Type Title Institution Name Country Amount
    2018 Achievement 2018 OIV Special Mention International Organisation of Vine and Wine (OIV) France
    2015 Award Peter W. Alexander Medal The Royal Australian Chemical Institute Australia
  • Education

    Date Institution name Country Title
    2013 - 2014 The University of Adelaide Australia Graduate Diploma in Online Learning (Higher Education)
    2002 - 2005 Flinders University Australia PhD
    2001 - 2001 Flinders University Australia BSc(Hons)
    1998 - 2000 Flinders University Australia BTech(Forens&AnalytChem)
  • Research Interests

David has been named as a Chief Investigator for the following Category 1 projects:

  • Australian Research Council (ARC) funded Industrial Transformation Training Centre for Innovative Wine Production (ARC-TC-IWP) led by Centre Director Prof Vladimir Jiranek in conjunction with other UofA researchers, Wine Innovation Cluster (WIC) partners and industry stakeholders, 2013-2017 and 2018-2023
  • Wine Australia (WA) funded project investigating the influence of grape quality on wine composition led by Dr Paul Boss (CSIRO) in conjunction with A/Prof Sue Bastian (UofA), 2013-2017
  • WA funded project investigating wine composition effects on Australian wine consumer mood and liking led by A/Prof Sue Bastian (UofA) in conjunction with other UofA researchers, 2013-2017
  • WA funded project investigating in-canopy misting to mitigate the effects of heatwaves on grapevines led by Dr Vinay Pagay (UofA) in conjunction with other UofA and WIC researchers, 2016-2018
  • WA funded project investigating the use of glutathione during winemaking led by Dr Simon Schmidt from the Australian Wine Research Institute in conjunction with Dr Gabriel Perrone at Western Sydney University, 2016-2020
  • WA funded project investigating sensor-based precision irrigation for improved vineyard water use efficiency, grape and wine quality, and profitability led by Dr Vinay Pagay (UofA) in conjunction with other UofA researchers, 2018-2020

David has been named as a Chief Investigator for the following Category 2 project:

  • PIRSA Advanced Food Manufacturing grant for developing a vodka from potato waste led by Dr Richard Muhlack in conjunction with A/Prof Kerry Wilkinson (UofA), 2017-2018

David has been named as an Associate Investigator for the following Category 1 project:

  • National Health and Medical Research Council funded Centre of Research Excellence involving targeted nutrition to improve maternal and child health outcomes led by Prof Maria Makrides (SAHMRI/UofA) in conjunction with other UofA and SAHMRI researchers, 2017-2022

Stabilisation and Clarification (Course Coordinator) - lecture topics include methods of clarification, tartrate stability and testing, fining agents, and odour, colour and oxidative stability

Distillation, Fortified and Sparkling Winemaking (Course Coordinator) - lecture topics include vapour-liquid equlibria, batch and continuous distillation, industrial still design, and cognac and armagnac production

Advances In Wine Science - lecture topics include red wine polyphenol chemistry and application of modern analytical methods

Brewing Technology and Beer Production - lecture on adjuncts, flavourings and hops

Sensory Studies - lectures on wine aroma and flavour

Introductory Winemaking - lecture on stabilisation and clarification

Fundamentals of Spirit Production - A Boutique Perspective - 5 day short course open to the public

Online learning free to the public - EdX MOOC World of Wine: From Grape to Glass 

Winners of:

~ 2015 South Australian Interactive Media Excellence Award (Government, Education & Non-profit) ~

~ 2015 Best Wine Educator, Wine Communicators of Australia ~

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  • Current Higher Degree by Research Supervision (University of Adelaide)

    Date Role Research Topic Program Degree Type Student Load Student Name
    2018 Principal Supervisor Chemical Markers for Authentication of Australian Wines Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mrs Ruchira Ranaweera
    2018 Principal Supervisor characterising the Distinct Flavours of Australian Cabernet Sauvignon Wines Master of Philosophy Master Full Time Miss Lira Souza Gonzaga
    2018 Principal Supervisor Identification of new Precursors and Factors Affecting Varietal Thiols in Wine Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Xingchen Wang
    2018 Principal Supervisor Managing Berry Heterogeneity Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Miss Claire Elizabeth Jane Armstrong
    2018 Co-Supervisor Efficient Red Winemaking by Monitoring Extraction and Evolution of Colour and Polyphenols Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Ms Judith Unterkofler
    2016 Co-Supervisor Filterability of wine: Impact of Cross-Flow Microfilteration on Sensory Profile and Chemical Composition of Wine Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Richard Gondai Ntuli
    2015 Co-Supervisor Enhancing The Competitiveness of Fine Australian Wine: A Cross Cultural Study of The Impact of Australian Wines of Provenance and Food Pairings on The Consumer Gastronomic Experience Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Marcell Kustos
    2015 Principal Supervisor Effects of Environmental Factors and Wine-making Practices on Varietal Thiols and Their Precursors Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Liang Chen
    2015 Co-Supervisor The Utility of Grape Marc Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mrs Anh Ngoc Hoang Nguyen
    2015 Principal Supervisor Development of Process Simulation Models for Objective Wine Quality Parameter during Fermentation Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Part Time Mr Patrick Charles Setford
    2014 Co-Supervisor Getting Alcohol Content Right: The Compositional and Sensory Basis of the Alcohol Sweet Spot Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Dr Duc-Truc Pham
  • Past Higher Degree by Research Supervision (University of Adelaide)

    Date Role Research Topic Program Degree Type Student Load Student Name
    2014 - 2018 Principal Supervisor INVESTIGATION OF AN EARLY HARVEST REGIME AND PRE-FERMENTATIVE BLENDING TREATMENTS TO PRODUCE LOWER ALCOHOL WINES: IMPACT ON GRAPE AND WINE COMPOSITION AND QUALITY Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Olaf Jan Schelezki
    2014 - 2018 Principal Supervisor Preparation and application of new sorptive polymers applied to wine with a focus on removal of 3-isobutyl-2-methoxypyrazine Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Ms Chen Liang
    2013 - 2014 Co-Supervisor The Impact of Water Deficit and High Temperature on Berry Biophysical Traits and Berry and Wine Chemical and Sensory Traits Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Marcos Bonada
    2013 - 2017 Principal Supervisor Development of Quality Assessment Tools for Chardonnay in Relation to Grape and Wine Composition Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Miss Joanna Gambetta
    2012 - 2016 Principal Supervisor Comprehensive Study of Australian Rose Wines: Characterisation of Chemical and Sensory Profiles Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Mr Jiaming Wang
    2009 - 2012 External Supervisor Development and Application of Novel Analytical Methods to the Identification, Formation and Fate of Two Important Wine Aroma Compounds Doctor of Philosophy Doctorate Full Time Ms Dimitra Liacopoulos Capone
  • Position: Associate Professor in Wine Science
  • Phone: 83136649
  • Email: david.jeffery@adelaide.edu.au
  • Fax: 8313 7116
  • Campus: Waite
  • Building: Wine Innovation Central, floor 4
  • Room: 4 40
  • Org Unit: Food and Wine Science

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