Commercialization and Licensing - Grapes

Time, tenacity, terroir, cooperation from Mother Nature, and the highest quality vines are needed to produce abundant grape harvests. The University of Minnesota can help by offering cold hardy, disease resistant, exceptional grapevine varieties.

Licenses are required for asexually propagating La Crescent, Frontenac gris, Marquette and Itasca grape vines.

If you want to propagate La Crescent, Frontenac gris, Marquette and Itasca grape vines, then you require a license from the University of Minnesota. Each of these varieties has been issued Plant Patents by the United States Patent and Trademark Office. Plant Variety Protection (PVP) has been applied for in Canada for each variety as well. 

Propagating vines for sale to third parties requires a plant variety material license. These licenses can be easily obtained for each of the four varieties in either the United States or Canada by simply completing an Express license application.

Licensed Through the U of M

La Crescent, Frontenac gris and Marquette wine grape vines are protected by United States Plant Patents or Plant Variety Rights in other countries. Nurseries must be licensed to propagate and sell these protected varieties.

La Crescent wine grape.

La Crescent Grape Wine

La Crescent combines St. Pepin and a Swenson selection from V. riparia x Muscat Hamburg.

Obtain an express license for La Crescent from TC.

La Crescent tech i.d. #z01051

Frontenac gris wine grape.

Frontenac gris Grape Vine

Frontenac gris, the white wine version of Frontenac, started as a single bud mutation yielding gray (thus named gris) fruit and amber-colored juice.

Obtain an express license for Frontenac gris from TC.

Frontenac gris tech i.d. #z02115

Marquette grape.

Marquette Grape Vine

Marquette is a cousin of Frontenac and grandson of Pinot noir. It originated from a cross of MN 1094, a complex hybrid of V. riparia, V. vinifera, and other Vitis species, with Ravat 262.

Obtain an express license for Marquette from TC.

Marquette tech i.d. #z05103

Itasca grape bunch.

Itasca Grape Vine

Itasca is the newest addition to the University of Minnesota's wine grape varieties. It is the first cold-hardy variety with low enough acid to make a dry white wine. It originated from a cross of Frontenac gris and MN1234.

Obtain an express license for Itasca from TC.

Itasca tech i.d. #20150077

Supported Through the MNRC

Frontenac wine grape.

Frontenac, Frontenac blanc and Edelweiss

Frontenac, Frontenac blanc, and Edelwiess grape vines are available at many nurseries and supported by MNRC participants.

Propagation reporting for Frontenac and Frontenac blanc Grapes is managed through cooperation with MNRC. Fees of $0.25 per plant are collected to help fund plant breeding efforts at the University of Minnesota, and foster the development of successful new plant introductions. If you propagate these varieties, please support this program by contacting Doug Danielsen, Secretary-Treasurer, MNRC, by email at

TC Licensing Contact

If you want to become licensed, the U's Technology Commercialization (TC) team would be pleased to help you. TC's site offers additional plant variety information and you can submit licensing and technical questions.

For additional licensing information, please contact:

BJ Haun
Technology Licensing Officer
Technology Commercialization
University of Minnesota
Phone: 612-626-8495
Fax: 612-624-6554

Thank you for your interest in U of M varieties.

Support U Research

Several grape varieties developed by the U of M are supported by MNRC participants. Please place orders with these nurseries and help enhance future grape discoveries.

Grape varieties supported by MNRC include: Frontenac, Frontenac Blanc, and Edelweiss.

If you propagate U of M varieties, please learn about supporting MNRC by email at