Machinery and equipment is one of the biggest costs on farm, so making the right decision before purchase is crucial. But with so much choice and technological innovation, it can be difficult to decide without seeing it in action or directly comparing different brands.
With millions of pounds’ worth of kit on display and dozens of experts on hand, this year’s Cereals Event (14-15 June) provides the perfect shop window for anyone in the market.
“Whether you’re on a budget or looking for the most high-end kit, there’s an array of equipment to suit all needs,” says event director Jon Day. “For those looking to make the switch to precision farming practices, or who just want to find out what it’s all about, there is help at hand with new machines, GPS guidance systems and advice on how to maximise yields while controlling costs.”
As an insight ahead of the event, here’s a look at just some of the latest technology on offer at this year’s Cereals.
Efficiency is often a priority when deciding on a new machine and with fuel being one of the highest costs on farm, it’s important for machinery to deliver. Leading the way is John Deere’s new 400HP 8400R tractor, which has broken three world records for fuel efficiency and drawbar performance. Set to make its first appearance at Cereals, it promises a 2% reduction in fuel consumption compared to the previous top of the range 8370R model. In addition to this, it boasts maximum drawbar performance – beating its nearest competitors by 23% – enabling wider implements to be used to increase productivity.
Cultivation Kit & Drills
As growers look to push crop yields and productivity, it can really help to have the most efficient cultivation equipment.
Developed by farmer Peter Bristow, Bristow’s new angled disc rapeseed drill is set to change how rape seeds are sown – creating cost and time savings. The single pass drill features split level subsoil 410mm discs at the front, a multi-tooth tiller roll, with angled discs and coulters which help retain lifted soil – ensuring the seed is covered. As well as this, a precision scraped flat roll with extreme spring pressures provides great depth control – sealing in all available moisture at point of drilling; improving seed to plant percentage and promoting early vigour.
“This new concept drill leaves a good, flat, one-pass seed bed with no need to roll,” says Mr Bristow.
A new HE-VA Combi-Lift Pre-Cultivator is set to be launched by Opico at this year’s event, which allows soil loosening at the same time as cultivating or drilling. Designed to subsoil down to 350mm, the Combi-Lift is a versatile machine, suited to a range of tasks, says James Woolway, Opico’s managing director. “The Combi-Lift can be lifted out of work when not needed, while operating the drill or cultivator,” he explains. “This means specific ground can be targeted, such as wheelings, poorly drained areas of the field or pockets of compaction.”
Combining the high-tech principles of pneumatic metering systems with the simplicity of a conventional seed drill, Amazone is launching Cataya – the 3-metre working width drill combination. This latest addition to Amazone’s stable has a 1270 litre seed hopper with a favourable centre of gravity to keep the tractor lift requirement at a minimum. It also boasts features including the Precis metering system and TwinTeC double disc coulters.
Amazone has also extended its Catros compact disc harrow range with the introduction of six new models. Among these, the Catros Special. The introduction of the smaller 2.5, 3.0 and 4.0m rigid Catros Special compact disc harrows benefits growers with uniform contour following for shallow, even, depth control.
John Deere will also be launching its 750A All-Till seed drill. The drill is available in 3, 4 and 6m models and is designed with large clearances for no-till drilling into stubble, working after minimum or conventional cultivations, or as a single pass operation for grassland and rough pasture renovation.
Other new cultivators and/or drill include:
- Dale Drills – new developments on its Eco-M drill
- Claydon -T3 3M trailed drill
- Agri-Linc – new PROFORGE INVERTA cultivator
- J Brock & Sons – additional offerings from the Brock Bourgault Range and the Fantom range of heavy duty springtines
- Kuhn Farm Machinery – Prolander
- Trials Equipment – Sampo 2010 Plot Combine on Rubber Tracks
- Mzuri – new precision metering feature on the Pro-Til drill
Profiling the most up-to-date innovations and application technology, Syngenta’s Sprays & Sprayers arena will feature again at this year’s event. The arena is set to put 50 of the latest sprayers to test – showing visitors what’s on the market to help them improve efficiency and reduce costs.
Among these, winner of ‘Sprayer of the Year’ at SIMA, is Berthoud’s new trailed sprayer – VANTAGE; perfect for farmers looking for both accuracy and speed. It draws the best features from across Berthoud’s range – including Dualmatic operation that reduces residual volumes by using shorter connecting pipes. With five models available, boom lengths range from 24m to 44m, all boasting good handling and stability thanks to their low centre of gravity and dynamic tank design.
“The VANTAGE is the sprayer for farmers who want to combine application precision, high working speed and comfort,” says François-Xavier Janin, head of products at Berthoud Crops.
Knight Farm machinery is set to launch its new entry level trailer sprayer models – Xplorer – at this year’s event. Machines will be available with either 3,000 or 4,000 litre spray tanks and 12 to 28 metre self-levelling hydraulic booms.
“Xplorer sprayers are robust machines that combine quality components and engineering to produce a reliable machine that will perform effectively, but be relatively simple and cost effective to operate and maintain,” says sales manager David Main.
Promising superior performance and boom widths of up to 42m is the new 900 series Campo sprayer from Maschio Gaspardo. Capacity ranges from 4,500 to 6,600 litres and even distribution is ensured thanks to the central unit which has been newly designed to absorb shocks from uneven ground while keeping the bar free at all times – allowing it to react and reposition itself.
Other new sprayers and spray equipment at Cereals includes:
- TeeJet – DynaJet Flex 7140 Nozzle Control System and TwinJet TT160 Spray Tip
- Berthoud – Hermes sprayer
- Kelland – S4000L 36m sprayer and M380-4 24m sprayer
- Tecnoma – OSS+ multi nozzle system
- Househam – self-propelled Merlin, Predator and Spirit sprayers
Whether you’re looking for spreaders, sprayers or spinners, it’s easy to get inspired by the varied options when it comes to slurry distribution.
Joskin will be debuting its Volumetra slurry tanker at this year’s event – recent winner of the ‘Machine of the Year 2017’ award. Despite a tank capacity of up to 26,000 litres, Volumetra is a compact tanker with a self-supporting structure, designed to minimise its total weight. It is designed specifically for volumetric pumps so it can be efficiently fitted with both spiral and lobe pumps, while limiting the overall dimensions; however, a vacuum pump can also be installed.
Joskin will also be presenting two new slurry injectors that are set to aid precision application. Solodisc XXL has a spacing of 18.75cm, allowing users to improve the distribution of slurry and adjust the injection depth. To keep the weight of the machine the same, while increasing the number of discs, Solodisc XXL features discs made of metal and NBR nitrile rubber, making them twice as light as previous models.
The Exacta TLX GEOspread spreader is the latest product from Kverneland making its debut at Cereals. The spreader has a newly designed CentreFlow system with 8 capacity vanes on each disc for a perfect overlap – regardless of speed. With 2 metre sections, 4 load cells and a reference sensor, it can do high speed spreading, under all circumstances. It is ISOBUS compatible and AEF certified and can be operated in combination with the Kverneland IsoMatch Tellus, IsoMatch Tellus GO or any other ISOBUS compatible tractor terminal.
Environmental efficiency is becoming increasingly important with pressure on farms to reduce carbon outputs. Alongside choosing the right tractor, farmers can now opt for an eco-friendly tyre sealant which is proven to reduce both puncture costs and downtime.
“The new heavy duty range of sealants help to maintain the correct tyre pressure meaning fuel costs are reduced and tyres last longer,” says Alex Burnand, director at Air-Seal. “Above all, the product – which is capable of sealing punctures of up to 15mm – is extremely environmentally friendly, using Propylene as opposed to Ethylene Glycol, which is non-hazardous and doesn’t contain caustic or acidic materials.”
Showcasing its new, third-generation Nokian CT tyre, Nokian is the first manufacturer to introduce three steel belts in CT tyre construction – allowing higher pressure and capacity load. With 20% more tread depth than the second generation tyre; Country King, and a tougher carcass, Nokian has created a tyre that is hardwearing, robust and very resistant to punctures.
Bridgestone will also have its latest tyre innovation on display. The VT-COMBINE tyre for combine harvesters is designed specifically for cyclic field operations and offers a 20% higher load capacity compared to standard tyres – despite lower inflation pressure – while ensuring maximum soil protection.
Available in five reach sizes from 5.6m to 8m, McConnel will launch its new 75 Series Power Arms at this year’s event. Powered by a high-performance 70hp hydraulic system, this new heavy duty power arm series has been designed with professional contractors in mind.
Among the new features is a high-efficiency oil tank and cooling system which aids de-aeration performance, produces low overall flow velocity and eliminates areas in the tank where resting oil can concentrate.
Taking part in a live demo at this year’s event, Griffith Elder will be showcasing its portable weigh beams. The fully movable system weighs in two parts; first in the tractor and then in the trailer – meaning farmers are able to know exactly what is being trailered out and what is left in the store.
Scheduled to be commercially available in 2018, the Anatis robot is an environmentally-friendly agricultural robot which will assist farmers and growers in their daily tasks – and will be taking part in a working demonstration at this year’s event. Anatis can independently maintain crops through hoeing and can produce plot reports based on crop data to help farms plan workload efficiently.
Tickets are now on sale via the website www.cerealsevent.co.uk/tickets and visitors can use the promocode CEREALS17TOS to save over 15% on tickets.