Muck NorthWest: NutriTech increases sales of slurry kit

Contractors are gearing up with more sophisticated machinery to meet demand for accurate application of farm manure and slurry, reported exhibitors at the Muck NorthWest event.

“Sales have gone ballistic,” said Alyn Lloyd of NutriTech, which sells Agrimat tankers and other equipment from Belgium. “We doubled our turnover last year and expect to do the same again in 2009. Apart from the regulation requirements, the price of mineral fertiliser makes slurry more valuable.”

The 12,000 litre Challenger tanker shown at the event is used as a demonstrator as well as for contract work with a shallow disc injector built by Dutch firm Duport to NutriTech’s specification.

The convex discs open a slot, with slurry then released at the surface from rubber outlets, with a simple mechanical pinch valve shutting off the flow when the unit is raised at the headland.

“Conditions are very different here than on the Continent, so our version is beefed up in places to cope with harder ground and take more punishment,” says Mr Lloyd. “Opening up a 2in deep slot for the slurry to go into is better than using a trailing shoe because I’ve seen strawy material left on the surface that tends to be lifted by the grass and ends up in the silage pit.”

Signals from a flow meter and forward speed sensor are used by a control box in the tractor cab to achieve the required application rate and for the operator a hydraulic filling arm results in more pleasant working conditions and a quicker turnaround.

Another advantage of the self-filling system, says Mr Lloyd, is that slurry can be sucked up from different places. Filling from just one spot tends to draw off the liquid leaving thicker material towards the end of the job.

“As it is, the centrifugal pump at the top of the suction hose means we can fill this tanker in 90 seconds, from a 3m deep pit or a three-ring above ground store,” he adds. “And with a double chopping unit on the injector, there’s no need to chop as you’re filling, which slows the job down.”

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