Smart Farming Solutions at LAMMA
There was plenty of innovative technology solutions on show at LAMMA 2019’s new home, the NEC Birmingham
An impact and temperature logging device – to help minimise damage losses in harvested fruit and vegetables – was one of the star products at LAMMA, the UK’s largest farm machinery show.
The new ImpacTrack data logger from Martin Lishman – a company that specialises in crop storage technologies – won the gold medal in the Future Innovation category of the 2019 LAMMA Innovation Awards. The cube-shaped data logger can be inserted within the packaging of any fresh produce to monitor temperature and impact shock during transit over any distance by road, rail, sea or air. It can also be encased in a 3D printed shape that mimics the size, shape and density of the fruit or vegetable being processed, which allows real-time monitoring or recording of damage during handling by machines or humans at any stage from the field to the shop floor. The data gathered can be downloaded at the end of the journey via Bluetooth to any smart phone or tablet using the Martin Lishman Sensing app.
Dr Gavin Lishman, managing director, says: “The fact that 1.3 billion tonnes of food are wasted globally each year, with almost 60% of crops spoilt, damaged or wasted during post-harvest operations, presents a huge challenge to the food production industry. But digital agri-tech solutions, leading to more efficient post-harvest processes, do not need to be costly and can reduce losses to as low as 1-2%.”
Topcon showed its 12.1in X35 and 8.4in X25 auto-steering and guidance consoles. Both use Topcon’s Horizon software to control a range of farming operations: from auto-steering tractors, sprayers and combines, to controlling variable rate applications and automatic section shut-off of spreaders, sprayers and drills. Topcon’s Auto Headland Turn function enables machines to make fully automated turns at headlands using alternating, infill and single direction infill patterns.
“The Auto Headland Turn system assesses machinery geometry and available turning space on the headland to calculate the best turn path,” Richard Reed, managing director of UK distributor LH Agro, explained. “It then steers the machine to precisely position it for the next pass, thereby making headland turns completely automated and ensuring total accuracy during all phases of each field pass. This is of particular benefit when working on recently drilled land where there are no visual references.”
Kuhn Farm Machinery
KUHN Farm Machinery displayed the OCEANIS 7702, one of four new models added to its range of OCEANIS trailed crop sprayers: the OCEANIS 5002, 5602, 6902 and 7702 machines have tank capacities of 5000, 5600, 6900 and 7700 litres respectively and are available with compact, all-aluminium booms in widths of 24 to 48 metres.
KUHN Farm Machinery’s twin-reel film binding bale wrapping system won a silver award in the Livestock Innovation category. Unlike other film binding systems which use wide mantle rolls to perform the bale binding function, the KUHN system uses two standard 750mm stretch film rolls to fully encapsulate the bale. As well as improving silage preservation and making the recycling of waste plasticeasier, this system also reduces plastic usage by up to 30% by pre-stretching the wrapping film by 70% prior to application. Film loading is also quicker and easier as each roll weighs just 27kg, compared to the wider rolls which can weigh between 40-90kg.
The Connix LED magnetic wireless lighting system from Sparex was awarded the gold medal in the Online Innovation category. The lights, which have a 10-hour battery life, can be placed on any vehicle around the farm, acting as indicators, hazard lights, brake lights and vehicle registration highlight.
Garford Farm Machinery
Garford Farm Machinery, which produces Robocrop guided hoes and weeding machines capable of working between plants within rows as well as between them, won the gold medal in the Arable category for its latest product. The Baby Salad Leaf Hoe is designed for delicate weed control hoeing in narrow rows of 50mm or less to assist growers faced with limited herbicide options. It uses camera and disc guidance to work close to the plants.
Herbst Machinery’s Compac Screen took the gold in the new Diversification Innovation category. The three-way split screener consists of a screen box with a pan feeder, where material such as waste material, aggregate, concrete, soil and rubble can be separated into three different fractions, turning it into useful graded end products. The screener has its own power unit and hydraulics, making it completely self-sufficient when operating on site.