The Swiss botanist, oenologist and vine grower Dr. hc Hermann Müller (1850-1927) named himself after his home canton Müller-Thurgau. He first attended the teachers' seminar and was then a teacher at the junior high school in Stein am Rhein. He then studied in Zurich at what is now ETH and graduated in 1872 with a specialist teacher diploma for natural sciences. After studying at the University of Neuchâtel (Switzerland), he moved to the former Botanical Institute of the University of Würzburg in 1872, where he received his doctorate in 1874. From 1876 to 1890 he worked in a managerial position at the plant's physiological research station Geisenheim, In 1891 he received an appointment to the experimental station for fruit, wine and horticulture in Wädenswil, today's Agroscope Changins-Wädenswil whose management he took over.
He was best known for the new breed that was later named after him Müller-Thurgau, whose final clarification of parenthood he no longer experienced, but only much later after decades DNA analysis became possible. But he was also very successful in other areas. So he conducted groundbreaking research in the fields physiology the vine, to the phytopathology (plant diseases) of the vines above all Botrytis, Wrong mildew and Red burner, In addition, the first to recognize and research the relationships between climatic conditions and periods of rest in vines and fruit trees.
In the cellar technology, Hermann Müller-Thurgau researched the possible control of alcoholic fermentation, the biodegradation of acids (he correctly recognized bacteria as the cause of that malolactic fermentation ) and undesirable developments in fermentation and maturation of wine. He also bred fermentation strains with special properties and dealt with methods for the production of alcohol-free grape juices and the production of fruit juices. Müller is regarded worldwide as a pioneer in the field of non-fermented pasteurized Fruit juices. His most important publications include noble rot of the grapes (1887), the production of fermented and alcohol-free fruit and grape wines (1896), the red burner of the vine (1903) and bacteria in wine (1913). The Prof. Müller-Thurgau Prize is given as a thank you and recognition to personalities who have made a contribution to the research institute for wine, fruit and horticulture in Geisenheim. See also under Viticulture personalities,