Chilling for winery | Aggreko UK

Crucial chilling solution during vintage season, New Zealand


The award-winning Yealands winery at Blenheim, New Zealand, was established in 2008. During the vintage season, more than 20,000 tonne of produce has to be harvested very quickly. Over a three-week period, it is vital to have the right equipment and people on-site when bringing in the grapes from 1000 ha of vines.

Operations run continuously throughout the vintage season and precise temperature control is a crucial factor for success, as heat controls the fermentation process that converts the carbohydrates in the grapes into alcohol. Slow, controlled fermentation preserves the character of the grapes, but if the process proceeds too quickly, it can ruin the flavour of the wine. During the vintage season, Yealands needs extra refrigeration capacity to snap chill the grapes and keep those process vats without chillers cool enough.

Aggreko's solution 

Aggreko installed a reliable and effective temporary chilling solution during the vintage season: a large tank cooled by a 600 kW chiller with a 30 L/s pump moving glycol around the system. This topped up the site’s cooling capacity and offered redundancy for peace of mind during the critical weeks of the vintage. A 500 kVA generator was used to power the chiller and a separate fuel cell was brought in to ensure that the generator could run uninterrupted for long periods.

The Aggreko rental model helps businesses like Yealands smooth out the fluctuating demands of seasonal or crop-based processes. This means operators can cover peak demand times without paying for equipment that is unnecessary during quiet periods. At the winery, Aggreko enabled Yealands to make use of tanks without chiller capacity and so increase process capacity without capital outlay.

With the availability of local natural gas from the China-Myanmar pipeline, Aggreko worked with the customer to set up a high-pressure gas reduction facility, allowing gas to be captured and optimised for use as an efficient fuel source.

Why was Aggreko chosen?

Aggreko has supported Yealands at vintage time for several years. The operator cites efficiency and professionalism as two of its key reasons for choosing Aggreko.

The winery has been certified carbon neutral since its inception and focuses on reducing total emissions. Aggreko is pleased to have played its part in this process.

It makes good sense to use hire equipment over the vintage period. If I were unable to do that, I would have NZD1 million tied up in equipment. Hiring enables us to use that money to grow our business.

Peter Yealands, Yealands Winery Owner and Founder

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