Innovative machines and equipment that offer significant practical benefits to farmers and operators are always plentiful at the LAMMA show, which made the judging of this year’s LAMMA Innovation Awards as difficult as ever.
Over 80 entries were put forward, reflecting the depth and breadth of innovation for which the agricultural sector is renowned.
The awards, sponsored by Firma Foreign Exchange, are open to new products exhibited at the event. The competition is split into five categories, judged on best product or innovation.
- Crop production equipment – tractors, all field machinery and crop drying, storage and handling equipment.
- Livestock equipment – livestock feeding and handling equipment, dairy machinery, milling and mixing and fencing equipment.
- Technological – covering the use of new technology, electronics, robotics and GPS.
- Environmental – the new product or innovation which has the most impact on the environment.
- Farm Machinery and Equipment Innovation Award, in association with Farmers Guardian.
The shortlist was judged by a panel of 10 experts, led by chairman Chris Rothery, on the first morning of the LAMMA show (17 January), which was held at the East of England Showground, Peterborough.
The panel was aided by four students from the West Midlands, selected by the West Midlands branch of the Institution of Agricultural Engineers (IAgrE).
The winners were announced at a packed award ceremony later in the day.
Mr Rothery was delighted with the numbers of entries. “We had a very good response again this year, over 80, which we believe is a record.
“The standard was very high, as we have come to expect, with some very interesting ideas and concepts that are likely to be of significant practical value to farmers.
“We look forward to even more companies taking part next year, when we plan to introduce one or two more categories.
“The industry has a lot to shout about and we think this is a fantastic competition. All entrants benefit from an unparalleled opportunity to gain free promotion for their new products.”
The winners were as follows:
Crop production equipment (The Loven Cup) – Halse South West
Entry: Halse South West, importer of machinery from Spanish manufacturer Ovlac, won this category with Ovlac’s Reptill, a multi-purpose short disc harrow designed to reduce the number of inter-row cultivations in vineyards.
The machine consists of two gangs of discs, between which are mounted a row of de-compacting, height-adjustable tines. It can cut roots and mulch while eradicating pans and improving drainage in one pass. An optional hydraulic headland frame lift for narrow headlands lifts the rear of the machine vertically towards the tractor.
Judges’ comments: The winning machine has multiple function lift mechanism for tight headland turns and tines for root cutting and compaction relief.
Livestock equipment (Anne Armstrong Trophy) – Wessex international
Entry: The Wessex BFR-180 is a modular feeding and bedding system that can be a configured as a bale feeder, a straw spreader and bale feeder combination or a bale feeder with an extension chute.
It can feed round bales of hay, haylage, straw and silage from either side with ease. With the Crossfire straw spreader attached, bedding and feeding tasks can be undertaken with the same machine, bedding from one side and feed off the other. The Wessex Sidewinder extension conveyor attaches to the BFR-180 for high level feeding.
Judges’ comments: Judges said that this product deserved to win first place for its well-engineered modular straw handling system and innovative features.
Technological (LAMMA trophy) – Alltech & Keenan
Entry: InTouch is a live nutrition service providing real-time diet support, providing a loading sequence and mixing process to generate consistent, accurate and optimum diet presentation.
InTouch enables rapid ration production, intake and production monitoring and control of feed and fuel costs.
InTouch has collected data on more than 1.3 million cows from nearly 10,000 farms in 25 countries. The new InTouch controller and Application has an enhanced display, an increased communication platform with Wi-Fi link, Bluetooth and 3G Connectivity, enabling instant transfer ration updates and loading reports between the InTouch Centre and farm. Its programmable rations facility can store up to 100+ rations and groups.
Judges’ comments: The judges said that the machine has benefits for both the operator and the livestock, with potential to save on feed bill and livestock monitoring.
Environmental (The IAgrE Ivel Award): Mzuri Pro-Til
Entry: Mzuri’s Pro-Til 3T Xzact combines a striptill drill and a precision seeder in just one piece of equipment, capable of sowing into all types of arable and precision crops in a single pass.
The patented Xzact precision metering system is an optional extra that can be fitted to most Pro-Til strip till drills to provide non-stop precision seeding. The drill can just as easily be converted back into a standard Pro-Til striptill drill for crops such as wheat, oilseed rape and beans.
Judges’ comments: The product has, precision drilling concept added to a versatile direct drill, offering significant contribution to the environment.
Farm Machinery and Equipment Innovation Award (Farmers Guardian Trophy) – Keith Mount Liming Ltd
Entry: The Phieldtek PCN210 is an on-the-go soil sampling device designed to improve the quality of a PCN soil sample. The machine permits increased sampling intensity, collecting 210 cores of soil/ha rather than the standard 50 cores.
The PCN 210 extracts cores at around 3m intervals. The machine can be towed behind a quad at speeds up to 10mph. A spring-loaded auger is pushed into the soil to pick up a core. The core is then pushed into a collecting container, before springing back into position for the next sample. Each 1ha grid can be sampled without stopping.
Judges’ comments: The mechanism to efficiently collect core samples and speed up the process and collection prior to testing is impressive, providing more accurate samples for potato cyst nematode.
The David Baggaley Trophy – Best new product or innovation at LAMMA 2017
Winner: Mzuri Pro-Till
Additional Award presented at LAMMA ’18
The Ray Larrington Memorial Trophy
Awarded to the top student on the Level 2 Diploma in Land-based Technology course at Riseholme College, Lincoln.
Winner: Billy Nicholson.
For further information on LAMMA ’18 go to www.lammashow.com