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Pellenc’s Selectiv’ Process is coming to Australia
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Pellenc’s new Selectiv’ Process on-board sorting system, which has created a whirlwind of interest in Europe and New Zealand, is coming to Australia for the 2009 vintage. The system, comprises a high frequency de-stemmer and an on-board sorting table, has resulted in a marked increase in the sales of Pellenc harvesters, as it offers a level of harvest quality which has never been seen before. Of particular interest is the system’s ability to remove more than 90% of petioles from the sample – a task which has challenged grape harvester manufacturers for years.
Following extensive testing and demonstration in Europe and New Zealand in 2007 and early 2008, more than 150 harvesters equipped with this system have been sold already and customers are delighted with the results.
Managing director of Pellenc Australia, Louise Fraser, recently visited the factory and vineyards in France with the company’s product development engineer, Frank O’Riley. They were so impressed with what they saw that they immediately ordered a machine to come to Australia for the 2009 harvest.
“We had heard fantastic reports about the Selectiv’ Process, but there is nothing like seeing the machine in action in the field,” Fraser said. “I have to say that the performance of the system exceeded our expectations. It was great to hear the comments of those who have used the machine as well. One contractor in France, who runs 23 Pellenc self-propelled harvesters and was involved in the early testing of the system, purchased 10 machines with Selectiv’ Process for the current season and will replace the remainder of his fleet with Selectiv’ Process machines next year. That speaks volumes. While it won’t suit all vineyard owners in Australia, the Selectiv’ Process is certain to excite those with lower tonnages and for whom quality is of high importance.”
“Pellenc has been working on this system for a number of years,” said O’Riley, who was involved in the testing of the prototype in South Africa. “Petioles are notoriously difficult to remove due to their low weight and their shape. The secret to Pellenc’s system is two-fold: a high-frequency de-stemmer, which operates at speeds of up to 1000 beats per minute, effectively resonating the grapes from the bunches and leaving berries and bunch stems intact; and a clever roller design which orientates the petioles, allowing them to be separated from the berries.”
Pellenc’s claims to remove over 90% of petioles have been verified by the IFV — the French Vine and Wine Institute. The system can also cope with reasonable chunks of wood, although it is not intended for use in vineyards with heavy canopies.
Although Pellenc Australia has not yet formally advertised the Selectiv’ Process, the company has already received a large number of enquiries from vineyard owners and contractors who have heard about the system’s success or seen the system in action overseas. “There is certainly significant interest in the system here, which made it easy for us to decide to bring it to Australia for the 2009 vintage,” Fraser said.
For further information, contact Pellenc Australia on +618 8244 7700 or . A DVD explaining the system and showing it working is available on request.