Bank On The Perfect Blend

As vital cogs in the fertilizer delivery machine, blender manufacturers have had much at stake in recent market variations. But many say they’ve fared well. “Buying decisions are more guarded and analytical, but dealers are still eager to upgrade and improve their facilities,” says Bruce Hinkeldey of Ranco Fertiservice Inc.

Lloyd Derowitsch, industrial sales with Speed King, has seen more repairs to older equipment over the last several months — “but we’ve been quoting equipment at a steady rate. I believe most dealers are weighing their options whether to buy new or repair old,” he says.

Business has, in fact, been booming for Yargus Manu­facturing, says Anne Sheehy, head of international sales and marketing. “We’ve been busy for the last 2 ½ years solid now,” and production for 2010 is booked into the summer so far, she says. Sheehy says sales on all batch blender models (four in all) have been up, with retailers turning to the volumetric styles as well. “More retail places that had a single unit blender for the last 20 years are upgrading to the larger volumetric machines,” she says. “And depending on the number of hoppers, size of the conveyers, and scope of the project, they can get as expensive as a tower.” Thanks in part to a building expansion, Yargus is also able to handle more higher-capacity projects for barge and ship unloading.

Economical, smaller-capacity units are still needed, though. The Doyle 6-Ton Vertical Blender “is still one of our most popular size blenders,” says Mark Baggett of Doyle Manufacturing. And the energy efficiency of R&R Manufacturing’s Minuteman 2 is a selling point in its 6-, 8-, 10-, and 12-ton models.

Evolving Needs

Manufacturers are sensitive to the demands of new fertilizer products — and are designing features to create the blends growers want:

Micro capabilities. Equipment makers continue to add options for micronutrient blending. Sheehy says Yargus just introduced a new volumetric feeder for the company’s volumetric and declining-weight blending machines. Designed for handling lower capacities, the feeder is efficient and accurate at metering materials at a much slower rate.

Liquid capabilities. But some manufacturers say the bigger need these days is to impregnate liquid products on dry fertilizer. Ranco offers a variety of pumps that accurately impregnate the liquids during the continuous flow blend process, according to the company. The system can treat individual fertilizer such as urea and phosphate before they are blended with other products – or it can treat the entire blend.

Jim Crane, marketing manager at A.J. Sackett, says his firm has done quite a bit of research in liquid enhancers such as Agrotain, Nutrisphere, and Avail — and has developed “some exciting processes” for its high-speed H.I.M. (High Intensity Mixer) in treating fertilizer with the products.

Speed/accuracy/efficiency. Manu­facturers say this demanding triad of features will continue to gain importance. More tons are being blended by fewer people, Crane points out, so equipment needs to be as reliable and efficient as possible. He says Sackett’s Multi-Dose In Weight system is enjoying good success due to its advanced computer control system, scale accuracy on all hoppers, high speed, and ease of installation and maintenance.

Speed and efficiency will be particularly important in 2010. “Dealers are gearing up for a big spring in many areas of the country due to the late harvest and lack of good weather to apply fertilizer last fall, says Rob Henderson, sales and marketing director for Wa­conia. Waconia’s tower blenders are designed for individual customers and can handle up to 200 ton per minute of output, while the company’s tapered-auger vertical blenders come in seven different sizes, from 6 tons to 18 tons.

Leave a Reply

Blenders Stories

BlendersFertilizer Blenders Keep Up With Growers
February 3, 2014
Specialty fertilizer add-ons and ever more demanding growers pose real challenges for blending design and technology. Read More
BlendersNew St. Marys Fertilizer Building Is Built For Speed, Efficiency
October 1, 2013
With its precision blending facility, J.B. Pearl embraces the company’s past while setting the stage for its present and the future. Read More
Blenders10 Dry Fertilizer Blenders For 2013
November 16, 2012
Blender units are getting faster and more efficient than ever, plus some manufacturers are taking advantage of new technologies. Here Read More

Trending Articles

EquipmentSummer Show Preview 2014: Superior Sprayers Take The Field
July 3, 2014
In this final installment of our coverage of the major categories of Big IRON that retailers can expect to test-drive at this summer’s events, here is a look at 19 sprayers. Read More
Scouting a soybean patch at Green Valley Ag.
EmployeesCropLife Compensation Survey: Battling Talent Drain
July 2, 2014
Retailers too often lose employees to companies outside of agriculture, while recruiting efforts are most often limited to competitors and other ag-focused organizations. Read More
HerbicidesDow AgroSciences Introduces SureStart II Herbicide
June 16, 2014
The enhanced formulation has improved viscosity and increased stability under heat and controls more than 60 high-anxiety grasses and broadleaf weeds found in corn fields. Read More
HerbicidesBASF Investing $270 Million To Expand U.S. Herbicide Production
June 11, 2014
BASF has invested more than $270 million to expand herbicide production capacities in the U.S., including more than 20 new products to be launched over next two years. Read More
EquipmentGPS: 25 Years And Still Growing
June 2, 2014
The evolution of global positioning systems applications in agriculture remains ongoing as the technology hits a notable milestone. Read More
CropLife 10013 Key Acquisitions Pinnacle Has Made In The First Half Of 2014
May 29, 2014
The only thing that has reached a more frenzied pace than #plant14 might be the multiple acquisitions that Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings has made in the first half of the year. Read More

Latest News

EquipmentKinze, Raven Team Up On 4900 Planter Monitor
July 23, 2014
Kinze Manufacturing announces a partnership with Raven Industries to develop a standalone monitor solution for the Kinze 4900 series planter. With this new Read More
LegislationNew Farm Bill Continues To Confuse As Growers Await USD…
July 23, 2014
The new five-year Farm Bill eliminates many of the direct payments previously payed to growers and could benefit from USDA clarification, reports a Toledo Blade columnist. Read More
EquipmentPrecisionAg.com Relaunches With Responsive Design For M…
July 22, 2014
PrecisionAg, the worldwide leader in precision agriculture information and analysis, announces the launch of its completely redesigned website, PrecisionAg.com. Read More
FungicidesEPA OKs Two Willowood Fungicides
July 21, 2014
The EPA has approved Willowood Azoxy 2SC and Willowood AzoxyProp Xtra. two widely used broad spectrum, preventative fungicides with systemic and curative properties. Read More
Precision AgFarmers Learning Fast As UAVs Take Off
July 17, 2014
Farmers and others interested in how UAVs can be used in agricultural applications were able to learn more about the technology during the recent Precision Aerial Ag Show. Read More
CropLife 100Bobby Knight, Richard Petty To Highlight Ag PhD Field D…
July 17, 2014
Attendees at the July 24 Ag PhD Field Day at Hefty Farms will learn about the latest agricultural technologies, and get a chance to meet legendary sports figures Bobby Knight and Richard Petty. Read More
WebinarsUpcoming Webinars
July 17, 2014
Register for one of our upcoming Webinars or access our archive of past Webinars to view recordings of presentations that may be of interest to you. Read More
A finished Willmar 16-ton side-shooting tender.
TendersNew Production Facility Helps Willmar
July 17, 2014
In 1963, a group of businessmen started Willmar. Today, a half-century later, the company is one of the ag industry’s longest-running brands. Read More
FertilizerCF Industries Sells Carbon Credits To Chevrolet, Donate…
July 17, 2014
CF Industries has completed the sale of a large block of carbon reduction credits to Chevrolet, and will donate the net proceeds of $600,000 to the National FFA Foundation. Read More
CropLife 100Grainland Cooperative, Minier Cooperative Grain To Merg…
July 17, 2014
The shareholders of Grainland Cooperative and Minier Cooperative Grain Co. approved a merger of company operations effective August 1, 2014. Read More
ManagementStudy: Drought Costing California Billions
July 17, 2014
A new study has found the drought has cost the state $2.2 billion, primarily in lost farm revenue and wages. Read More
FertilizerCF Industries Resumes Production At Oklahoma Nitrogen C…
July 17, 2014
The company had shut down production at the Woodward, OK, facility in April to address an issue in one of the site’s boilers. Read More
CropLife 100Wilbur-Ellis To Relocate Agribusiness Division To Denve…
July 16, 2014
The move Eastward will allow Wilbur-Ellis’ Agribusiness Division to be more accessible to relevant geographies and is expected to enhance communication and collaboration among the division’s nearly 3,000 employees. Read More
Soybean field
FungicidesValent Launches New Seed Protection Fungicide For Soybe…
July 16, 2014
The INTEGO SUITE System contains the first new, novel seed protection fungicide chemistry registered in 30 years by the EPA for protection against Pythium and Phytophthora. Read More
Crop InputsSyngenta Drive To Thrive 10 Finalists Announced
July 15, 2014
Finalists are chosen based on the quality of their essays and photos depicting what makes them thrive. Read More
FertilizerHow To Minimize Phosphorus Losses In Runoff
July 15, 2014
Phosphorus losses from agricultural fields can be divided into three categories: flash losses of soluble phosphorus, slow leak losses and erosion events. Here's how to minimize losses in each instance. Read More
ManagementCalifornia Drought Threatens To Dry Up Farm Wells
July 15, 2014
Farmers hit hardest by California's drought could begin to see wells run dry next year, according to a new study by The Center for Watershed Sciences at the University of California, Davis. Read More
Precision AgPoll: Do you plan to attend this year’s InfoAg Co…
July 14, 2014
This year’s InfoAg Conference is just two weeks away. The premier event in precision agriculture takes place July 29-31 at Read More