A new drone system for assisting farmers in the management of farms and vineyards was unveiled today at the Auction of Washington Wines in Woodinville, WA, by Pollen Systems Corporation.
The potential for such services is certainly large – according to the international organization OIV (Organisation Internationale de la Vigne et du Vin), nearly 20 million acres of planted vines exist worldwide.
Pollen Scout, is a drone-aided service and self-service portal that helps farmers and vineyard owners keep an eye on crop growth, irrigation issues, and monitor and resolve pest and disease problems
They provide the service to farms and wine grape growers via a network of commercially certified ‘drone technologists’, who visit participating farms and vineyard sites on a weekly basis.
Using drones, they capture high resolution pictures and spectral images to help farmers improve crop yield and quality, as well as uncover and address common issues in a timely manner.
Pollen Systems launches Pollen Scout: drone-aided managed services and self-service portal help farms and vineyards monitor crop growth, discover irrigation issues, and investigate pests and diseases, improving crop yield and quality… Click To Tweet
Pollen Systems commenced flying drones earlier this year on a regular basis over established and well-respected properties in the Red Mountain A.V.A. and Walla Walla A.V.A in Washington and Oregon, including Hedges Family Vineyard, Skyfall Vineyard, Red Mountain Vineyard, and Seven Hills Vineyard.
Norm McKibben, Managing Partner of Pepper Bridge Winery says it is “encouraging to see young companies like Pollen Systems propose new technologies and solutions to vineyards and farms in Eastern Washington and Oregon.”
The WA annual Auction of Washington Wines was the ideal place to launch Pollen Systems, Keith McCall, Founder and CEO says – adding that Pollen Scout is not extremely useful for vineyards but also for a wide variety of crops including hops, raspberries and blueberries, cherries and other stone fruit, and wheat.
“We’re delighted to launch the company by being a sponsor of the Auction of Washington Wines, a charitable event benefitting the wine industry and local community. Helping out is core to our beliefs and values as we support our customers.”
As a young company, it’s exciting to see the rapid adoption of our solutions and we look forward to expanding our services to other crops and regions in 2019,” he continues.
Pollen Scout is not only applicable to vines, but a wide variety of crops including hops, cherries and other stone fruit, raspberries and blueberries, and wheat.
According to the company, early adopters have expressed positive results, confirming the value of the drone-assisted farm management system.
“We’ve been actively using the images Pollen Systems provides to identify both stressed and high vigor areas in our vineyard,” said James Bukovinsky, Vineyard Manager at Hedges Family Estate Vineyard. “Having the Pollen team show up weekly gives us the ability to adjust irrigation or to find outbreaks of pests and disease more rapidly throughout the season.”
Greg Lill, Co-Founder and President Emeritus of DeLille Cellars agrees there is massive potential for such a system.
“Pollen Systems’ unique drone-enabled managed services can support the million acres of planted vineyards in the United States,” he says.
Technology and Data, properly applied, will help Winemakers produce even better Washington wines in the future.”