Grape Picking Pan or Lug

A vineyard worker used this yellow plastic container—called a picking pan or lug—during the grape harvests of 1996 and 1997 at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in California’s Napa Valley. Each of about a dozen men in the harvest crew carried one of these pans into the vineyard, harvesting rows of grapes identified as optimally ripe by the winemakers and vineyard manager.
Using special knives with curved blades, workers deftly cut the clusters of grapes from the vines and dropped them into the pans. As they worked quickly from vine to vine, they moved the pans along the ground. When a pan was filled, the picker carried it (sometimes running with it perched on his shoulder) to a large open trailer, or gondola, which was pulled by a tractor and parked at the end of the row. The vineyard workers in the 1996 and 1997 harvests were mostly young, Latino men, several of whom had worked at Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars in previous years. The experienced vineyard workers worked quickly and accurately, keeping MOG (material other than grapes) out of the pans.
Physical Description
plastic (overall material)
manufactured (overall production method/technique)
overall: 18 cm x 60 cm x 40.5 cm; 7 3/32 in x 23 5/8 in x 15 15/16 in
ID Number
accession number
catalog number
See more items in
Work and Industry: Food Technology
FOOD: Transforming the American Table 1950-2000
Food: Transforming the American Table, 1950-2000
Exhibition Location
National Museum of American History
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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