Grimme Varitron 470

    Grimme has introduced its flagship Varitron 470 four-row self-propelled potato harvester to the UK. One machine has been undergoing testing in East Anglia, while another has already been sold for red beet harvesting.

    At £525,000 the machine represents a serious financial investment. However, the company points out that recent wet autumns and soil damage are increasingly prompting growers to try to avoid harvesting into late November.

    The UK market for self-propelled harvesters, about 50 units a year, may be specialised, but it is competitive. De Wulf (sold by Niagri Engineering at Thetford) has reported a record sales year for its two-row machine, while fellow Belgian maker AVR is now operating in the UK through four dealers. Meanwhile, PMC Harvesters in Fakenham, Norfolk, has started importing Ploeger three- and four-row machines.

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