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Lynch Bages trials tool to monitor wine inside barrels

Chateau Lynch Bages will be among the first to trial new technology that claims to help wineries better monitor what is happening to the wine inside a barrel or vat.

The system uses sensors within barrels and vats to take continual measurements, from the evolution of sugar levels and turbidity to alcohol, temperature and colour.

Chateau Lynch Bages is set to begin testing the ‘Winegrid’ technology for the Bordeaux 2015 vintage.

The estate’s general manager, Jean-Charles Cazes, is part of the the entreprenurial mentoring programme that seeks to help food, wine and tourism start-up companies to develop.

Winegrid is owned by Portugal-based Watgrid, which originally created the technology to measure water purity.

The company believes that it has huge potential for the wine industry, first developing the product for producers in Madeira who were specifically looking to monitor the wine as it passed through the estufagem process – a tradition first discovered through lengthy sea voyages when the wine would be repeatedly heated and cooled.

‘Currently a winery will typically monitor temperature, and take samples a few times a day to send to a laboratory,’ Watgrid founder Rogerio Nogueira told Decanter.com. ‘Our interface allows producers and consultants to track a number of parameters direct from the vats – with the possibility to track numerous chateaux or vats at the same time, sent wirelessly to a smart phone or compute.’

The sensor is made of glass and stainless steel.

Written by Jane Anson

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