On a search for innovation, the Vine-Works team recently took a trip to the Nieder-Olm viticultural show in Germany.

Having been regular visitors to Vinitec, Sitevi and Intervitis trade shows over the years, in the interests of research Vine-Works the team decided it was time to try a different show. Nieder-Olm is a wine growing town in the middle of the Rheinhessen and about an hour’s drive down the autobahn from Frankfurt.

“The difference between Nieder-Olm and other wine producing shows is that it is set up in the middle of the town,” said D’Arcy Gander at Vine-Works. “There is no transit to out of town conference centres, you park where you can and off you go.”

While Nieder-Olm isn’t on the same scale as other international shows, all of the big German manufacturers are still in attendance with Fendt, Braun, Lipco, New Holland and Ero showcasing the latest machinery.

“The big difference at Nieder-Olm was that the traders were there to make sales on the day,” said D’arcy. “Machinery was priced to sell, and growers were there to buy. Other shows can be frustrating at times as the traders generally refer customers to their local dealer for prices.”

Unlike other trade shows attended by the Vine-Works team, the Nieder-Olm show mixes all trades together; with tractors next to winery tanks, next to technology companies, customers need to walk the full show to find the deals.

“A big hit at the show was the row crop pilot,” said D’arcy. “This nifty driverless electronic crawler will simultaneously mow and herbicide CDA sprayer robotically. It is sadly yet to hit the market, but this is where the future of vineyard mechanisation lies.”