Ten years of Smart Grader practical experience: ‘grading much more seed’ CU LTIVATION AND TECHNOLOGY BEDRIJFSGEGEVENS VOF GABRIËLS Kees Gabriëls, together with his wife Michelle, form the Gabriëls van den Broeke General Partnership. They run an arable farm in Zevenbergen with a total surface area of 77 hectares, which includes owned and leased land. The products in the cropping plan are 25 hectares of seed potatoes and, additionally, seed onions, onion sets, winter carrots, chicory pens, sugar beet and cereals. The seed potato varieties that the Partnership grows for trading company HZPC are Spunta, Sunita and Mondeal. Planting and harvesting is carried out by a fellow farmer, the other mechanisation activities are done inhouse, and include storage and grading. BEDRIJFSGEGEVENS VOF UITDEWILLIGEN The arable farm of the Uitdewilligen family is a General Partnership with the brothers Angelo and Patrick and their parents Anton and Marian as partners. In total, the Partnership cultivates 130 hectares of arable land, of which 60 hectares are owned and 70 hectares leased. Seed potato cultivation is the most important activity with a total surface area of 100 hectares. Moreover, they also cultivate sugar beet, winter wheat and silage maize on the farm. Uitdewilligen sells the seed potatoes to three different trading companies: Stet Holland, Agroplant and Den Hartigh. The varieties that the family business grows are Miranda, Connect, Torza, Belinni, Spunta, Ramos, VR808, Triplo and Spunta. For some of their activities, the Partnership cooperates with fellow-seed potato grower Daniël Dekker. but that’s not all. The Smart Grader sorts long, big seed like a Spunta much more accurately than a reciprocating grader. As a result, it’s possible to stay within the size with a much smaller margin and to grade more precisely in the size. So an extra 15 percent is feasible. Calculate that with today’s prices. But even in a year like the previous one, the more precise grading work pays off. The ware oversize yielded only 3 eurocents per kilogram, while the seed was 33 eurocents. That’s a difference of 30 eurocents for an x percentage of more accurate work.’ Grading for third parties as an extra. And there’s more, continues Gabriëls. ‘We’re now sitting at the kitchen table with a cup of coffee, while the Smart Grader continues to run quietly. If nothing happens, ‘he points to his smartphone where he can follow the operations of the grader, ‘then we can still chat for a bit longer. I usually start grading at the end of October. I turn on the machine at 8 a.m. and sometimes I only turn it off again at 10 p.m. On average, I grade around 35 tons a day, but the maximum capacity is much higher. If you could and wanted to, you can easily grade a Angelo Uitdewilligen proudly shows his smartphone, on which he can follow and, if necessary, adjust the operations of the grading machine. ‘I can now grade all the seed potatoes on my own and I don’t have to be there all the time.’ Potato World 2019 • number 3 17 Pagina 16

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