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Vasantdada Sugar Institute – Pune


Scientist, Department of Alcohol Technology, VSI

VASANTDADA SUGAR INSTITUTE (VSI) is an autonomous organization promoted and funded by cooperative sugar factories and distilleries in the state of Maharashtra, India. VSI is engaged in Academic, Research & Development and Extension activities related to sugar industry and distilleries.

VSI is recognised as Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (SIRO) by the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, Government of India, Department of Science and Technology (DST). The institute also acts as the resource organisation for Central Pollution Control Board and State Excise Department.

What courses does the institute offer for students who desire to take up brewing as a profession?

Vasantdada Sugar Institute, Department of Alcohol Technology provides two courses for pursuing career in Wine, Brewing and Alcohol Technology.

M.Sc — Wine, Brewing and Alcohol Technology DIFAT — Diploma in Industrial Fermentation and Alcohol Technology

IFAT is a three-semester course designed for development of entry level skilled personnel for winery, brewery and distillery operations. VSI is successfully running the IFAT course for the last four decades to meet the growing demand for professionals in the field of alcoholic beverage industry in India.

M.Sc (WBAT) is a two years course affiliated to the Savitribai Phule Pune University (SPPU). The course is designed to provide basic knowledge of wine, brewing and alcohol technology. VSI is at par with all leading institutes in the world working in the area of Wine Making, Brewing and Alcohol Technology. VSI and National Research Centre for Grapes (NRCG), Pune, have entered into a collaboration for exchange of knowledge in the area of Viticulture and Enology .First three semesters of the M.Sc. (WBAT) course are common for all the students. In the fourth semester, the students are required to select specialization depending on their choice either in brewing or wine making or alcohol manufacture & bottling or 2nd/3rd generation ethanol. Three months in-plant training or research project in the area of specialization is also mandatory.

What is the base qualification required to be able to opt for these courses?

VSI only offers post-graduate diploma and post–graduate degree courses. IFAT is the institute’s signature course while M.Sc (Wine Brewing and Alcohol technology) is affiliated to SPPU, Pune.

For the IFAT course a Bachelor’s degree in the following subjects is accepted:

  • Chemistry
  • Wine Technology
  • Biotechnology
  • Microbiology
  • Alcohol Technology or Chemical/ Biotechnology

For M.Sc (WBAT) course Bachelor degree in following subjects are accepted:

  • Wine Technology
  • Bio-Technology/ Microbiology/Chemistry
  • Agriculture/ Botany/ Zoology/
  • IFAT
  • B.E. / B.Tech. (Chemical Biotechnology)

After scrutiny of applications the eligible candidates are called for entrance exam and Personal interviews. The entrance exam are MCQ based and consists of aptitude test based on Chemistry, Biological Sciences, Basic Engineering, Current Affairs and English. Shortlisted candidates are further evaluated through Personal Interview.

What do you look for inastudent applicant, in order for him or her to qualify for this course?

Apart from meeting educational criteria in the personal interview, we select candidates based on their general ability to understand technical concepts related to the syllabus, and genuine interest in the field. Students with prior experience are always preferred for both IFAT and M.Sc (WBAT) courses.

What is the kind of investment needed to take up this course?

Students will not need any special investment for undertaking both the courses at the institute. More details about fee structure and accommodation can be obtained from the institute’s official website ( or by communication with the Registrar’s Office (+91-20-26902-171). The fee structure and accommodation are standard and comparable to other technical post graduate courses in the state and the country.

Anything else a student from india needs to know in terms of extra abilities or skills needed to qualify and graduate?

Both IFAT and M.Sc. (WBAT) courses are designed to provide in-depth knowledge on wine, beer, alcohol production and allied industries. More emphasis is given on hands-on training and operational aspects of winery, brewery and distillery. The Department of Alcohol Technology has a well equipped laboratory and student training facilities consisting of lab scale brewery and winery. The institute is situated in the city of Pune. Pune has always been a hub for major technology provider for wine, brewing and alcohol industry.

Apart from pursuing career in the production and packaging, students from the institute can also opt for a career in research and development related to the field.

What are the employment assistance programs in the university for students who successfully complete the course? what wre the job prospects?

The institute has been providing skilled manpower to the alcohol beverage industry. Several alumni of the institute are working at managerial positions in multinational breweries, distilleries and wineries. Our alumni have always supported the institute with placements of the students.

VSI has a very close linkage with the industry and we organise campus placement for students of both IFAT and M.Sc. (WBAT) course. However, most of our students are placed through personal correspondence by the staff of the institute.

In recent years VSI has been a majorplatform for providing entry level assistant brewers to the microbreweries business. Majority of brewers and assistant brewers working in Indian microbreweries are VSI alumni.

For further information and details of application procedure, you may visit our web site: or contact Dr. Sanjay Patil, Technical Adviser and Head, Department of Alcohol Technology, VSI through email:

12 January 2020
Editorial-Brewer World