Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Optimising wine-growing operations improves world competitiveness

28.03.2006
The EUREKA E! 2587 VI-TIS project has developed new instrumentation and devised modelling software to boost the quality of European wine while reducing overall production costs.

Close co-operation between French and Spanish equipment, wine-making and agricultural research partners has resulted in the development of highly automated precision farming technology aimed at helping wine growers around the world to improve the quality of their output and better control their productivity.

In 2004, some 290 million hl of wine was produced globally, with approximately two thirds being produced mainly in France, Italy, Portugal and Spain.

France is a leading wine exporter but European wine producers on the whole are facing increasingly fierce competition from overseas, especially as domestic consumption continues to drop. All players in the sector are responding to economic pressures by stepping up marketing efforts and increasing their understanding of international markets, at the same time as ensuring stringent production control. Wine growers need to invest in new equipment and novel technology to improve farming efficiency and cost-control, while ensuring the sustainable production of higher quality wines that appeal to a wider range of customers.

Increasing quality is essential

“Increased quality is the key to meeting the crisis in the wine industry and to ensure sustainable production,” explains project leader Gaetan Archambault of agricultural equipment manufacturer Pellenc, a French company specialising in the worldwide sales of equipment for wine and olive growing. The specifications for VI-TIS were continually adapted as the project advanced from basic research through application research, to discussions on use with the wine growers themselves, to determine their real needs.

For example, new sensors were developed to measure sugar levels in the grapes and their level of acidity, as well as analysing soil hygrometry and condition. Hand-held computer systems were adapted to record the data in the field. And relevant information was identified to be fed back from the field to the control centre to allow calculations of fertiliser needs and enable yield analysis.

Wider market understanding

“Co-operation in EUREKA enabled us to work easily across borders and to involve universities and research centres,” Archambault adds. “Having both French and Spanish partners provided additional windows into wine-growing operations.” Project participants included the Ecole Nationale Supérieure d’Agronomie de Montpellier (ENSAM) in France, the Navarra Viticulture and Oenology Centre (EVENA) and Bodegas Chivite, a major wine producer from the heart of the reputed Spanish wine-making area of Navarre.

EUREKA opened access to funding and – more importantly – to a much wider market understanding. Pellenc already had experience of EUREKA as this was its third such international project. “I am certain that the work we have undertaken in this EUREKA project is far ahead of its time,” he adds. “The advances we have made are already encouraging other groups to start similar developments. However, we are only at the beginning of facing up to the crisis in the wine industry. The result of our work will be an increase in sustainable wine production and in wine quality.”

By the end of the VI-TIS project, a viable prototype system had been created but the final commercial specifications are still being drawn up. This is taking longer than originally forecast to take into account all the feedback from potential users. Pellenc estimates that 30 to 40% of its wine industry clients will be using the resulting technology by 2010.

Catherine Shiels | alfa
Further information:
http://www.eureka.be/inaction/viewSuccessStory.do?docid=1498729

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht New gene for atrazine resistance identified in waterhemp
24.02.2017 | University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences

nachricht Researchers discover a new link to fight billion-dollar threat to soybean production
14.02.2017 | University of Missouri-Columbia

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Breakthrough with a chain of gold atoms

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

In the field of nanoscience, an international team of physicists with participants from Konstanz has achieved a breakthrough in understanding heat transport

Im Focus: DNA repair: a new letter in the cell alphabet

Results reveal how discoveries may be hidden in scientific “blind spots”

Cells need to repair damaged DNA in our genes to prevent the development of cancer and other diseases. Our cells therefore activate and send “repair-proteins”...

Im Focus: Dresdner scientists print tomorrow’s world

The Fraunhofer IWS Dresden and Technische Universität Dresden inaugurated their jointly operated Center for Additive Manufacturing Dresden (AMCD) with a festive ceremony on February 7, 2017. Scientists from various disciplines perform research on materials, additive manufacturing processes and innovative technologies, which build up components in a layer by layer process. This technology opens up new horizons for component design and combinations of functions. For example during fabrication, electrical conductors and sensors are already able to be additively manufactured into components. They provide information about stress conditions of a product during operation.

The 3D-printing technology, or additive manufacturing as it is often called, has long made the step out of scientific research laboratories into industrial...

Im Focus: Mimicking nature's cellular architectures via 3-D printing

Research offers new level of control over the structure of 3-D printed materials

Nature does amazing things with limited design materials. Grass, for example, can support its own weight, resist strong wind loads, and recover after being...

Im Focus: Three Magnetic States for Each Hole

Nanometer-scale magnetic perforated grids could create new possibilities for computing. Together with international colleagues, scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum Dresden-Rossendorf (HZDR) have shown how a cobalt grid can be reliably programmed at room temperature. In addition they discovered that for every hole ("antidot") three magnetic states can be configured. The results have been published in the journal "Scientific Reports".

Physicist Dr. Rantej Bali from the HZDR, together with scientists from Singapore and Australia, designed a special grid structure in a thin layer of cobalt in...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Booth and panel discussion – The Lindau Nobel Laureate Meetings at the AAAS 2017 Annual Meeting

13.02.2017 | Event News

Complex Loading versus Hidden Reserves

10.02.2017 | Event News

International Conference on Crystal Growth in Freiburg

09.02.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Stingless bees have their nests protected by soldiers

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

New risk factors for anxiety disorders

24.02.2017 | Life Sciences

MWC 2017: 5G Capital Berlin

24.02.2017 | Trade Fair News

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>