Patented steel process used for the first time in the French wine industry

West Bromwich based Hadley Group, Europe’s largest privately owned cold rolled steel manufacturer, is celebrating the groundbreaking achievement of becoming the first British company to secure a contract to supply steel vine support pickets into the French champagne vineyards in Epernay. The first order for over 100,000 metres of their innovative UltraPIQUET™ vine pickets has been brokered by Hadley Group’s French Sales Manager Yves Rigomont, and despatched from the West Midlands to coincide with the start of the French champagne season in October. Rigomont said, “The French champagne market is very traditional in its nature with established practices and an overwhelming majority of local suppliers. Therefore the Hadley Group has developed the product for C.S.G.V. (Cooperative Du Syndicat General Des Vignerons), one of the leading cooperatives in the Champagne region. We have worked very hard over a considerable period of time with them to develop a quality bespoke product for use in the vineyards. Our patented UltraSTEEL™ process ensures that the vine pickets are lighter yet 20% stronger than plain steel pickets, whilst also being more durable and easier to maintain than wooden alternatives. Perhaps most importantly, due to the fact that the UltraSTEEL™ process utilises less steel, it is greener by design.” Epernay is 26 kilometres south of Rheims, home to prestige champagne houses including Moet et Chandon and is widely considered to be the heart of the Champagne region. There are 20,000 hectares of vineyard in the area with 200 million bottles of Champagne stored in over 120 kilometres of underground cellars. Hadley Group’s Marketing Director, Bob Dunthorne added, “This UltraSTEEL™ product is our latest agricultural application for the UltraSTEEL™ process but it is the first of a range of similar vine pickets which we could develop to meet the exact local needs of vineyards all over the world. The UltraPIQUET™ is suitable for the many new, automated processes that are deployed in the champagne vineyards. Hadley’s in-house product development process is unique in the UK because we have a dedicated technological design, tool making and pre-production facility, enabling the rapid modelling of up to 6000 samples. This gives us significant time advantages in terms of product development, ensuring exhaustive testing to perfect the product in a fraction of the time. Yves’ local experience and knowledge is also a good example of Hadley Group working on a local level irrespective of where in the world the solution is needed.” -Ends-



  • Darral Lambert
    Charter House Sandford Street, Lichfield, Staffordshire. WS13 6QA
    08456 444 567