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People & Opinions

Felix Lavandier: Direct marketing helps small farm survival in the Grand Duchy

Interview by Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Felix Lavandier runs an Angus suckler herd and a flock of traditional Luxembourg red-headed “Fox sheep” as well as growing cereals in his 25 ha part-time farming business on fertile land just south of the Ardennes. Key income source is meat sales straight from the farm.

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Gary Grossen: 25 years of DLG membership

Interview by Dr Thomas Adolf, DLG

Gary Grossen from Donald, USA, is celebrating his 25th anniversary of DLG membership. His company GK Machine is a manufacturer of high quality equipment, parts and accessories offering a wide range of solutions for agricultural and industrial needs. Since 1976, the  aim of GK Machine is to meet and exceed customer expectations.

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Dr Wilfried Aulbur: Supporting clients to solve problems

Interview by Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

DLG member Dr Wilfried Aulbur is a Senior Partner at Roland Berger and is responsible for the firm's global Commercial Vehicle, Construction and Agricultural Equipment business. His main occupation is the influence of new technologies (precision farming, robotics, electrification, autonomous vehicles) on agriculture as well as dealing with questions of operational performance improvements for companies that are active in this area.

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Jeen Nijboer: Sustainability must pay off

Interview by Dr. Birthe Lassen, Thünen Institute of Farm Economics, Braunschweig

In the Netherlands, sustainability criteria can have an impact on financing. Rabobank has been gaining experience with this for several years. Jeen Nijboer explains in an interview how this works, which criteria are effective and how it pays off for farmers.

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Dr Alexei Ugarov: Manager of Agrokultura

Interview by Dr Olga Hunger, DLG

Dr Alexej Ugarov is a Russian farm management expert who also studied agricultural science in Germany before working for concerns KWS and Südzucker. Now he manages a very large area of farmland some 500 km southeast of Moscow.  

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Marjan Dolensek: Harvesting energy and hydro electricity

Interview by Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Marjan Dolensek from Slovenia has been a member of the DLG since 1996. His profession is adviser in agricultural and forestry mechanisation. But he also owns a farm and some forest with special enterprises that include marketing timber as an energy fuel and selling electricity generated by waterpower on his land. 

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Shaun Groom: Strong interest in agricultural machinery

Interview by Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Growing up in rural Norfolk in the East of England, Shaun Groom is now the Chairman of the Farm Equipment Council at the Agricultural Engineers Association (AEA). For 28 years he has worked for companies in the farm machinery industry. As a Kaizen philosophy fan and a DLG member since 2016, he appreciates the exchange of experiences with professionals from all over the world.

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Mirko Graff: We have a solution for most problems

Interview by DLG

DLG member Mirko Graff and his brother manage their dairy farm with 190 hectares exclusive rangeland, 430 heads of livestock with 250 milking cows combined with a biogas plant and a waste management enterprise for biodegrables in particular.

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Markwart von Pentz: "The digitisation picture is far from complete"

By Thomas Preuße, DLG Mitteilungen

For as long as we have been talking about digitisation in agriculture, we have been complaining about the huge gap between wish and reality. We talk about Farming 4.0, but farms mostly stop at automatic control systems. John Deere President Markwart von Pentz explains the steps of digitisation as a jigsaw puzzle in which pieces are gradually added to fit exactly.

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Dr. Jörg Zimmermann: Unique solutions for farm logistics

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Hi Tech Installations Ltd. is a company that works as a general contractor for fertilizer storage and blending systems in Western Canada. About two years ago, Dr Jörg Zimmermann and his partner took over the management.

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From Hessen to Brazil: Dr Achim Schudt’s non-stop search for sustainable systems

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Dr Schudt became a DLG member in 2005. This agricultural innovator, who has spent much of his working life in Brazil, sees the organisation as an important bridge between academia, politics, the public and practical farming.

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Johanna Ratia from Finland: Safe fuel storage for farmers

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

“Our mission is safe storage of energy”, sums up Johanna Ratia from Farmtools Oy, a familiy company specialising in fuel tanks and based in Ylihärmä, Finland.

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Supply chain law: Affirming the failure of a development aid policy

By Professor Otto A. Strecker, chairman of AFC Consulting Group AG and honorary professor of agricultural economics at Bonn University

A supply chain law is not the right way to achieve fair production standards worldwide as even the minimum standards vary from country to country. But companies need legal security. So how can fair standards be secured?

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Young-Min Kim: The DLG-South Korea connection

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

For over 10 years now, this DLG member and senior manager with the Korean-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry has promoted Agritechnica and EuroTier in his Far East homeland. Not only that, Young-Min Kim and his team organise and guide groups of agricultural industry experts to these major events, his organisation being official DLG travel partner in South Korea. The aim: achieving a good selection of specialists for all aspects of farming.

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Welcome to the new reality

Opinion: The future of the farm business

During the corona crisis the US technology index Nasdaq wrote the winner’s history. Boosted by Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Facebook it soared over the 11,500 point mark for the first time (August 2020), with a momentum more trend of the century than momentary flash. The corona pandemic accelerates the shrinking of traditional business models.

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Older topics

Eva Branta: Forestry and farming investment in Europe’s northeast

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Eva Branta is a DLG member from Latvia and a real estate consultant advising throughout the Baltic States where she sees interesting capital potential in both timber and farm production. So far, most of the business occupying her AQ AgriEstate company is carried out in Latvia where she advises international and domestic clients on agricultural investments and farmland management.

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Dmytro Yakovenko promotes biological solutions for better crop production efficiency

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Ukraine’s leading producer and exporter of biological products for use in nutrition, soil fertility and plant protection plans to expand into the EU market. The company is BTU-CENTER and its head of international sales, Dmytro Yakovenko, became a DLG member in 2019.

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Romanian crop scientist Sorin Vatca: Preparing for climate change

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Plants themselves can respond very well to the changing conditions that confront them, believes plant physiologist Sorin Vatca, assistant professor in crop science, Cluj Napoca University for Agricultural Science and Veterinary Medicine (USAMV). This DLG member recognises changing weather conditions as a major challenge confronting crop scientists.

Günther Griessmair: New perspectives for farming being created!

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

The Italian province of South Tyrol is home to farm machinery repair specialist Günther Griessmair. He  finds an ideal way of »Keeping an eye on what’s happening over the edge of my own plate«, is through the monthly DLG-Mitteilungen magazine.  »I’ve been a DLG member since 2012 and also value the DLG test reports and naturally all the events organised for DLG members«.

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Professor Milan Tosic: Over 50 years promoting international farming progress

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Farming being his lifelong fascination, he studied in Sarajevo and Belgrade, continuing the internationalism of his upbringing by forming his first connections with western Europe with a practical semester on a large estate in Germany. Milan Tosic has a master’s degree in agricultural engineering  and gained a doctorate at the University of Bonn. His thesis: “The mechanisation of sugar beet growing in Eastern Europe”.    

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Farmer Markus Schieber: Agritechnica ideas aid a large-scale crop enterprise in Hungary

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

From the family farm near Schwäbisch Hall in German Baden-Württemberg to an expansive arable enterprise over 1000 km away in Baja, Hungary: this was the route followed 25 years ago by Markus Schieber and his father in the search for better crop growing opportunities.

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Maren Ebinger - Veterinarian in Argentina

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Argentinian veterinarian Maren Ebinger specialises in dairy herd health and nutrition. This avid reader of DLG newsletters is also an expert cross-country driver......

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An engineer from the North: Lars Blackstad Kristensen

By Dietrich Holler

It’s almost 20 years now since Lars Blackstad Kristensen first worked in Germany. This mechanical engineering graduate is employed by the Danish construction machinery manufacturer Hydrema and cooperates with the DLG Test Center for Machinery & Farm Inputs at Groß-Umstadt.

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Greg Smith - CEO of the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Greg Smith has been CEO of the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association since 2012. Established in 1847, the RNAA is one of the eight UK associations and societies with a "Royal" prefix and runs a number of agricultural shows and events at a 150 ha showground, the biggest of which is the two-day Royal Norfolk Show. Mr Smith describes his job simply as turning strategy into action, primarily to support agriculture.

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Swiss farmer Mario Baumgartner: Where caring for the countryside is crucial

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

The family farm structure in Swiss agriculture means that monoculture isn’t usual. Instead, a good healthy crop rotation is encouraged, says Mario Baumgartner who has been a DLG member for four years now. He values the up-to-date information available on market developments and technology advances, as well as the opportunities for learning more about all aspects of farming.

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Jorge Temer Cuevas: Ideas from the "Old World" aid agriculture in Chile

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Jorge Temer Cuevas’ company is based at Victoria in the middle of Chile. Servicios Agromalleco Spa is a major agricultural machinery dealership there. This businessman is also proud to be a member of the DLG.

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Tero Mikkola from Finland harvests heat

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

»As profitability in farming becomes increasingly difficult to achieve, we’ve concentrated more on the heat production sector«, says Tero Mikkola who also farms niche crops and is convinced of the advantages of diversification.

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Hubertus Gay: From German farm to the OECD in Paris

By Erminia Ciarleglio, DLG

Since 2014 Dr Gay is in the agriculture and trade department of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) in Paris, specialising in the coordination of the annual OECD-FOA Agricultural Outlook.
He’s a farmer’s son from north Germany und his brother is now in charge of the family farm.

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Johannes Weber: Organic pork producer from Austria

By Erminia Ciarleglio

DLG member and farmer Johannes Weber specialises in the production of organically managed pigs. On two farms he produces weaners that are passed on to contract feeders. All pigs are then processed and sold as bio pork products. The Weber farms also produce organic pig feed. Another enterprise is collection and composting of green waste.

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Peter Nation: Chief Executive New Zealand National Fieldays Society

Interview by Erminia Ciarleglio

The company is the New Zealand National Fieldays Society Inc.  An elected board governs the New Zealand National Fieldays Society, driving the future direction of the organisation, its charitable activity and its flagship event – Fieldays.

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Dr Noor Zafira from Malaysia trains the food engineers of the future

By Erminia Ciarleglio

In DLG’s worldwide membership are experts not only in growing food, but also specialists in processing it. Additionally, there are members whose main interest is the design and construction of the machinery and factories involved in the output of high quality, nutritious and hygienic foodstuffs. 

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Pedro Madero: We help dairy farmers to improve their business

By Erminia Ciarleglio

Pedro Madero is CEO/president of “Madero Equipos de Ordeño” company and “Madero Dairy Systems” Group, with headquarters and offices in Mexico, USA, China, Puerto Rico, with distribution dealers in Spain, Chile, Rusia. The group is dedicated to produce and develop equipment, solutions and systems for large commercial dairy farms.

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What do US farmers and German farmers have in common?

By Rainer Winter

Interview with Tricia Braid, Director of Communications, Illinois Corn Growers Association/Illinois Corn Marketing Board. She is responsible for the communications, marketing, and PR plans of both corn associations and acts as ICGA and ICMB’s spokesperson, managing issues and evaluating programming for its effectiveness.

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Member profile: Shapovalov Aleksander Germanovich

CJSC “Malkom Corporation” is a company with two main business segments. The first is the trade-purchasing activity on selling machinery, seeds, plant protection products and fertilizers. The second area is the agricultural production itself, that is  cultivation of the following crops.

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Member profile: Antti Ala-Talkkari

An export-oriented machinery manufacturer from Finland gets early news on market trends through the DLG

Walk around the outdoor machinery exhibits of both Agritechnica and Eurotier on Hanover’s exhibition grounds and you cannot miss the wide range of biofuel boilers and heating systems – but also mounted snow blowers and similar municipal and agricultural equipment – from Veljekset Ala-Talkkari Oy based in Finland Lapua. This company specialises in applying the latest technology for its products which include heating plants for domestic (30 to 990 kW capacity) and industrial applications (500 to 2000 kW). 

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Member profile: Frederick Nomayo

Nigerian farmer and DLG member wants more DLG presence to help with farm mechanisation in his part of Africa

Frederick Nomayo is chairman and managing director of Nomayo Farms Nigeria Ltd, based in Benin City, the capital of Edo state in southern Nigeria. He sees his DLG membership, DLG exhibitions and the organisation’s publications in particular as key information sources for agricultural business success in his country.

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