What is new about the CDR WineLab® tests and the CDR wine and must analysis system? We have added to the panel the acetaldehyde analysis. We got the analysis method ready to determine the levels of acetaldehyde in wine. The new method requests the use of the sample as is and a testing time of 6 minutes per test; it gives the possibility of 50 tests per hour.


Acetaldehyde or acetic aldehyde at room temperature is a colorless volatile and flammable liquid, with an irritating and pungent odour. It belongs to the compounds of aldehydes, whose molecules contains a group -CHO each and in which the atoms (carbon, hydrogen and oxygen) are coplanar, that is the atoms lay on the same plan. It is produced in the process of fermentation of sugars and, like all the aldehydes, it is easily oxidizable to acid, in this case acetic acid.

Why acetaldehyde is determined in wine and must

Acetaldehyde is the most important binder of sulfur dioxide so it can be useful to determine its level during the winemaking process.

Acetaldehyde forms during alcohol fermentation and starts to accumulate in wine with a consequent increase of need of sulfur dioxide. Sulfur dioxide is “consumed” at different speeds, depending on the conditions of the fermentation: if the fermentation conditions are optimal, acetaldehyde produced is low, but if fermentation is slow you can have higher values and that influences subsequent treatments of the wine, in particular the content of sulphites in wine.

In wine there are other binders of the sulfur dioxide: pyruvate, α-ketoglutaric acid, galacturonic acid, glucose and acetoin. Although you can find some of these compounds at levels higher than the acetaldehyde ones, acetaldehyde is the main binder of sulfur dioxide in wine.

Application of the test

The acetaldehyde is the responsible molecule of the stabilization of the colouring matter in red wine and the main bounder for the sulphites. Its determination, directly in the cellar, is very important to manage the micro-oxygenation process in red wines and the correct sulphitation of white wine and sparkling bases.

Acetaldehyde test, performed directly in the winery with CDR WineLab®, allows, for exemple, to manage in the best way the process of the micro oxygenation in steel adjusting the flow of the oxygen in the plant. On the base of the results obtained with the WineLab analysis system you can also monitor the state of the level of the acetaldehyde in wine during the fermentation process, a thing that could not be possible through traditional analysis systems in laboratory.

All the correlation tests and checks with the reference methods assure accuracy and repeatability of the results and of the new acetaldehyde analysis of WineLab.