Hillebrand handles a shipment from out of this world

Hillebrand coordinated the special transport of 12 bottles of 2000 Bordeaux Grand Cru that was unlike any other vintage.


As a global logistics provider that moves wines around the world every day, what could be different about moving wine from Houston to Bordeaux?  In this case, it had everything to do with where the wine was stored at the time.  When Hillebrand was approached about this project, these wines were in outer space.  Yes, that’s right, they were 400 km above our heads on the International Space Station, orbiting our planet 15 times a day.

Now, whenever space travel is involved, you have to throw in some fun facts: 

  • The wine was aboard the International Space Station cruising around at a speed of 27,580 km/hr (or 4.76 miles per second) in zero-gravity and subject to solar radiation. 

  • SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft gave the wine a lift from Cape Canaveral on November 2nd, 2019 and the bottles were in space 438 days and 19 hours. 

  • Could this be the longest trip for a wine shipment?  We’ll let you do the fact-checking, but these wines covered roughly 290,000,000 km in distance (that would be the same as circling the earth almost 7,250 times).




What was the mission?

This wine was sent to space in order to fuel scientific research to study the impact on the chemical and sensory qualities of the wine after its exposure to such extreme conditions.  ‘Project CommuBioS’, as it’s named, is part of a larger research program called ‘Mission WISE’ that also brought back over 320 canes of Cabernet from space to study.  In Space Cargo Unlimited’s press release about this project, the company says “Mission WISE is the first comprehensive, privately led applied research program in space to reinvent the future of agriculture on Earth.” 

Given the significance of this shipment, not to mention all the effort and preparation in advance to bring it to fruition, making sure the wine made it back into the hands of the research teams in Bordeaux safely and securely was without question.

“It’s been a pleasure to work with Hillebrand, who immediately responded positively to our particular request.” mentions Nicolas Gaume, CEO and co-founder of Space Cargo Unlimited with Emmanuel Etchepparre. "The value and service they brought to our extraordinary shipment have been outstanding. Their reputation of carrier and the quality of service fulfilled our expectations brilliantly.” 

We are honoured to have been entrusted with the care of this special case of wine on the last leg of its journey home to Bordeaux. 

Our services go beyond wine logistics
While our expertise centers around shipments on Earth, our winery transport solutions include wine, barrels, bottles and more. Our knowledge in wine care means we ship and protect products with our insulation liners to safeguard them from contaminants. We believe in helping you to make the most efficient and cost effective use of transport. 

How can we help you? 
Hillebrand’s global supply chain experts have 176 years of experience and want to help your business grow across the world. Our experienced teams in the fine & rare division are ready to help you with any exceptional shipment, whether it is only a single bottle, or it is going to the even the most remote of areas.  Let our solutions do the work for you. 

How can we help your business grow?