About eight years ago, I started making wine.
My family has owned and operated vineyards for four generations.
Our grapes have traditionally gone to make commercial jams, jellies and juices. Because we grow a Concord grape, no one was especially interested in attempting wine. I started playing around with different ways of extracting the juice and fermenting and have managed to create a tasty rose and red wine. As my product has gained popularity, I’ve gotten licensed by the TTB, invested into a building and steadily produce more and more wine. The margin of profit is slim. There are huge start-up costs involved with necessary equipment as well as bottles, labels and caps. I need to operate my business efficiently as possible. I am constantly looking for ways to reduce time, effort and expense that isn’t directly related to making wine. Incorporating a building automation system has been a huge help. Essential systems are now incorporated into a centralized hub that is accessible by way of my smartphone. At any given time, I can check on the temperature of the building and make adjustments. This is especially helpful because of the importance of maintaining the indoor environment at a constant 64 degrees year round. In my local area the temperature climbs into the mid nineties and drops well below zero. If there is a temperature fluctuation or a power outage, I get notified. The building automation system includes motion-activated lights and surveillance cameras that increase security. I have real time access to video of the exterior building, and if an alarm sounds, I receive an alert. Another beneficial feature is the automated door locks. There are times when I need to allow a UPS professional to enter the building and pick up a shipment of wine when I’m not available. Through my phone, I’m able to unlock and lock the doors from virtually anywhere.