CH Engineering CH500 steep-slope grape harvesting: On a tightrope

The world’s first full grape harvester for steep slopes has been developed in Germany’s Rhineland-Palatinate wine region

by Sonke Schulz

Wine growers have not escaped the challenges of recruiting staff for tending and harvesting their vines, and, as with other aspects of modern agriculture, mechanisation is providing an answer. But coming up with a machine capable of navigating steep slopes that drop 4.0m for every 5.0m you move forward, with a mix of clay and gravel and wet grass sods, has proved a challenge.