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Yanmar provides Moët & Chandon with robots for vineyard work

Yanmar Vineyard Solutions, the viticulture technology subsidiary of Yanmar, is working in partnership with the renowned Champagne House Maison Moët & Chandon.

The partnership focuses on advancing robotic and autonomous solutions in the vineyards by means of the development of the YV01 autonomous vineyard robot, aiming to innovate and improve the efficiency and safety of vineyard work today.

This partnership between Yanmar Vineyard Solutions and Maison Moët & Chandon is an important milestone. It underscores a shared vision for a more productive, safer future in vineyard management, offering sustainability in terroir protection.

The collaboration started in 2019 when Yanmar first introduced its autonomous machine concept to Moët & Chandon. At this time, the wine industry was beginning to explore the potential of robotic vineyard assistance.

Moët & Chandon recognized the opportunity and provided a set of specifications for a machine capable of operating under challenging plots with steep slopes and lateral slopes.

In 2021, the first prototype of the YV01 was introduced. The machine was first tested on a CIVC plot to ensure it met the specifications before being released to Moët & Chandon.

Following these tests, in early 2022, Moët & Chandon undertook extensive trials with two YV01 machines on some of their most demanding plots.

This phase was crucial for evaluating the machines’ performance under real-life conditions. It also marked the start of a training program to teach staff new ways of working in steep areas.

By the end of 2022, Moët & Chandon confirmed their intention to operate the YV01 in some of their most challenging vineyard plots in Aÿ and Cramant. The YV01 met all the criteria for ease of use, enhanced operator safety, and regained autonomy in managing the most challenging plots.

Feedback from the winegrowers who have worked with the YV01 is very positive. They report that “it meets all the standards of what we know on traditional tractor-mounted machinery”.

In addition, it offers the “same quality of plant protection” while offering the advantages of improved safety and better adaptation to difficult terrain.

Motivated by the positive results, Yanmar Vineyard Solutions and Moët & Chandon started the development of a new weeder tool in 2023, which has been available for sale since January 2024.

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