As soon as the sun is (sometimes) out and the sky is (kind of) blue, our thoughts turn to summer activities like BBQs and meeting friends in pub gardens to enjoy a glass of something nice. The finer weather also signals picking season for grape growers, as ripe fruits are harvested and sent to wineries to work their magic.
Wine may not be everybody’s cup of tea but the British wine industry continues to grow despite the coronavirus obstacles of the last 18 months and growing competition from gin and cocktails. The 769 vineyards throughout England and Wales produced 10.5m bottles of wine in 2019, nearly double that bottled in 2017. What may surprise you more, is that 10% of sales were exported to the likes of Norway, USA and Australia. With increasing demand, it’s even more important that British grapes get safely from the vine to our wine glasses.
The perfect picking season
The harvesting of grapes is one of the most crucial steps in winemaking. The grape must be just ripe enough and handled so as not to burst or bruise the bunch. The way grapes are handled and stored, as well as the weather conditions during any season, could mean the difference between a vintage year and a wine cellar full of plonk.
There’s nothing we can do about the great British weather, but phs Teacrate can help with grape harvest and storage throughout picking season. Our reusable, polypropylene food crates and pallet boxes provide an economic and environmentally friendly alternative to wooden or cardboard storages boxes, in addition to being splinter and fibre-free and saving you from the dreaded waste disposal costs. With vineyards and wineries moving away from single-use cardboard to support the wine industry’s Sustainable Wines of Great Britain initiative, phs Teacrate’s Returnable Transit Packaging (RTP) is the perfect choice.
Fruits of your labour, handled with care
Our lightweight food crates and pallet boxes are durable and easy to carry, being of manageable size and with handles ideally placed for comfortable manoeuvring to and from the field. They can be placed on the floor, between vine rows, without fear of getting a soggy bottom and safely stacked for transit or storage. Vented sides help prevent condensation and/or mould and allow water from rain or washing to drain away. Our food trays and pallet boxes (picking bins) can be bought or hired:
Standard food tray FC4 - 35 litres, 197 mm deep compatible with supermarket bale arm trays.
Deep food tray FC4D – 46 litres, 252 mm deep function smoothly on roller conveyors.
Pallet Box/Dolav PB2 – 600 litres, 1200 x 1000 x 760 (picking bins) with cross beams to assist mechanical tipping.
Should you choose to purchase any of our food trays, both are available with a range of customisable features, including an insert area for text or moulded logos and hot stamp branding areas. They are textured on all four sides for additional grip and are compatible for use with folding boxes, other food trays and supermarket bale arm trays. You’ll be glad to hear that they also run smoothly on roller conveyors.
The polypropylene construction makes the trays strong and perfect for use in chilled environments. They are also easy clean at your vineyard site or, for added convenience at this very busy time of year, you may want to make use of one of phs Teacrate’s cutting-edge washing facilities. This service is available to you whether or not you purchase or hire food trays from us.
Food trays ready when you are
With fruit ripening being weather dependent, we understand that your grape harvest can be a moveable feast, so we just want you to know that phs Teacrate is here when you need us. We offer short-term rental on all trays and crates which will arrive washed and ready for action within 2-3 days of your order (next day delivery available), or long-term rental or sales if you need our crates and pallet boxes for longer.
When not in use, both sizes of food tray can be neatly nested for storage or collected by one of phs Teacrate’s friendly operatives from a location of your choosing, be that at vineyard or winery. There’s no min order for supply or washing and our flexible, ad hoc rental service is available from our national network of depots located throughout the UK.
Whether you need food trays or pallet boxes now or in the future, get in touch with us to discover how much easier your grape harvest can be with phs Teacrate.