Transcarpathia Cider Project
About this project:
In the Spring of 2019, the CSCA Delegation to Uzhhorod involved Pete Bober, Vice-Chair of the CSCA – Uzhhorod Council (retired community college administrator) and Dr. Lindsey Shirley, OSU University Outreach & Engagement Associate Provost. Together, they presented at a U.S. Embassy-funded conference hosted by Uzhhorod National University (UzhNU) on the potential of Ukrainian universities providing extension services in their local communities. Dr. Shirley provided the keynote address outlining Oregon State University’s Extension model and Bober presented on the Oregon Community College model of providing services to business and industry.
Dr. Shirley was interested in the creation of a project that would support the development of connectivity between UzhNU and local communities. In a meeting with a Regional Administrator (similar to a County Commissioner), the delegation learned of an opportunity to explore the potential production of “craft cider” beverages in Transcarpathia. The region is host to a substantial amount of apple production and there are currently no craft cider producers in the area.
A plan was launched to bring approximately twenty-five apple growers, juice producers and distributors to Corvallis for two weeks to attend a specially developed seminar in the Fall of 2020 to explore the development of cider production in Transcarpathia. With the advent of Covid-19 the project has now shifted to a distance learning/virtual model for late-2020/early-2021 with hopes of an in-person seminar at OSU in late Summer of 2021.
The project hopes to serve as a catalyst for the development of a new industry for the region that could bring substantial employment for residents through the creation and distribution of a new value-added agricultural product.