First conference in the program "Bauen für den Winzer" (Building for the Vintner)

© Roger Baumeister

Successful start of a new program at the Geisenheim Institute of Continuing Education

Whether it is a new construction, conversion or the renovation of existing buildings: sooner or later many wineries are confronted with the topic of "building". The Geisenheim Institute of Continuing Education (GIW) is addressing this topic in its "Building for the Vintner" program, which began in August 2019 with the first conference, "Planning, Building Law, Subsidies". The aim of the conference series is to provide vintners with an overview of the most important steps from planning to completion of interior and exterior construction projects. 

The first issue to be considered in a building project is usually the location, and in this connection, Professor Hans-Peter Schwarz from Hochschule Geisenheim University's Department of Agricultural Engineering spoke about possibilities and problems for internal building work using several examples.

Willi Wege from Hessischen Landgesellschaft mbH illustrated the regulations regarding external building work at a winery, be it a new build or an extension, also including the at times contentious rules regarding Straußwirtschaft (seasonal wine tavern), Gutsauschank (wine bar and restaurant) and living space. The talk concluded with an intensive and at times heated discussion, highlighting the very different viewpoints to be taken into consideration in this area.

Johanna Reichert from the viticulture department of the Regional Council in Darmstadt reported on the structural changes facing wine businesses which are necessitating building work. She also gave examples of existing building and investment funding programs. Jürgen Dexheimer from the Hessische Landgesellschaft presented practical experience reports, explaining the process from planning to building accounting using a precise timeline and two best-practice examples. 

The conference highlighted difficulties in connection with building applications and permits for a winery and solutions offered, with the speakers contributing their many years of practical experience.

The conference finished with visits to two local wineries that had recently completed building projects, where the owners gave tips based on their experience of the building process.

A follow-up event is already being planned and details will be available at .

From the German article by Dr. Matthias Schmitt


© Roger Baumeister
© Roger Baumeister