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Frequently Asked Questions

Submitting Samples: 

Q1. How do I go about submitting a sample for analysis? 

A1a: Fill out the submission form: https://grapesandwine.cals.cornell.edu/extension/new-york-state-wine-analytical-laboratory/sample-submission-form/ 

A1b: Follow the instructions: https://grapesandwine.cals.cornell.edu/extension/new-york-state-wine-analytical-laboratory/sample-submission-instructions/ 

A1c: Send/ drop the sample. 

Q2: How much sample do you really need? 

A2: Depending on the test/# of tests requested 375-750mls. We request at least 375mls as we perform multiple checks to ensure accuracy. If you have a limited quantity of product, contact the lab to determine if testing can be accomplished with a smaller quantity.    

Q3: What container should I use? 

A3: Any container that is airtight and durable is acceptable as a sample vessel. Wine bottles, water bottles, or test tubes are all suitable. Please refrain from using Tupperware, canning jars, or plastic bags as these vessels tend to leak and compromise the sample. With the exception of frozen samples, limit the amount of headspace to prevent the loss of volatile compounds during shipping.

Q4: What if I’m sending juice or some other product that may ferment or otherwise build pressure during shipping/ storage? 

A4: If possible, freeze the sample. Remember to leave room in the sample container to allow for expansion of sample during freezing. The day of shipping, place frozen sample/samples in an insulated shipper with ice packs and then ship overnight to the lab. If it’s not possible to freeze it, just get it as cold possible and apply the same guidelines.   

Q5: When is the best time to drop off a sample or arrange for it to arrive? 

A5a: The lab is occupied Monday-Friday 8-4.  On weekends or holidays, no packages are delivered.  Please bear in mind that equipment needs time for warm-up/ calibration and shut-down/ cleaning, so while samples may arrive during business hours on a Friday afternoon, they may need to wait until the following Monday for analysis.

A5b: The earlier a sample arrives, the earlier it is analyzed.

Analysis: 

Q1: How do I know which analyses are offered? 

A1a: https://grapesandwine.cals.cornell.edu/extension/new-york-state-wine-analytical-laboratory/wine-analyses/ 

A1b: https://grapesandwine.cals.cornell.edu/extension/new-york-state-wine-analytical-laboratory/juice-analyses/ 

A1c: https://grapesandwine.cals.cornell.edu/extension/new-york-state-wine-analytical-laboratory/distillate-analyses/ 

Q2: What If I don't know which test(s) I need? 

A2: Email us at ccbal@cornell.edu or give us a call at (315)787-2263! We are available M-F 9-4 via these channels, and you can expect a prompt response to help you figure out your testing needs.  

Q3: If I have multiple samples that need the same test(s), do I need to submit new forms each time? 

A3: If all samples are getting identical tests, fill in the correct number of samples when prompted on the submission form. For example, if you have 6 samples and all 6 require ABV and 2 need VA as well, fill out a form for 4 samples requiring ABV, and a form for 2 samples requiring ABV and VA. When submitting multiple samples, please make sure to fill in the Sample ID section of the submission form as well.  

Q4: Can you provide nutritional analysis for labels? 

A4: Unfortunately, no, but please reach out for guidance and we may be able to point you in the right direction.  

Q5: This is a wine analysis for export.  Do you know what tests I need? 

A5: We do not. Please speak with your exporter to acquire the correct paperwork and forward it to us with your samples.   

Results: 

Q1: When can I expect my results? 

A1: Most results can be expected within one (1) business week, and often will be received within 2-3 days. Export analysis and bottle sterility are the exceptions. These tests require upwards of 10 business days to complete.  

Q2: How will I receive my results? 

A2: You will receive a PDF report on Cornell letterhead to the email address submitted on your submission form.  

Billing: 

Q1: How do I pay for my analysis?   

A1: A few days after receiving your results, you will get an invoice in your email inbox. You can pay this invoice either by credit card or E-check.  

Q2: I got a bill from the New York Wine & Grape Foundation.  Why is that? 

A2: New York State wineries that are members of the Wine and Grape Foundation receive a subsidy towards the testing of grape wines from NYWGF. We send an invoice to NYWG, they subtract the subsidy, and then send you an invoice for the remainder of the bill.