The "Swiss Federal Research Institute for Fruit Crops, Viticulture and Horticulture" in the city of the same name on Lake Zurich in the Swiss canton of Zurich was founded in 1890. The main reason for this was the enormous damage to viticulture caused by phylloxera and mildew in the second half of the 19th century. Today it is mainly responsible for the German-speaking part of Switzerland. The Institute also cultivates some vineyards on Lake Zurich. The first director of the institute was Professor DDr. Hermann Müller-Thurgau (1850-1927), who completed the work begun in Geisenheim (Rheingau) on the new Müller-Thurgau variety named after him. The main tasks are consulting, training, research and development. The well-known biologist Dr. Otto Schneider-Orelli (1880-1965) worked at this institute at the beginning of the 20th century in the research of plant-physiological, entomological (insects) and mycological (fungi) problems.
In 1981, Professor Hans Tanner, in collaboration with Carla Zanier, identified the chemical compound trichloroanisole (TCA) for the first time as the cause of cork tasting. Since the 1970s, the Beverage Microbiology Group has been selecting pure yeasts for vinification. Particularly successful yeasts are Lalvin W15 and Lalvin W27. Further focal points are the use of beneficial organisms in the vineyard and control of pests by the confusing method. A similar institute responsible for Italian and French-speaking Switzerland is Changins in the canton of Vaud. The two stations were combined under the management of Agroscope Changins-Wädenswil at the beginning of 2006.