In vineyards and orchards all around the world, steep slopes and muddy terrain can make maneuvering a tractor tricky. Trelleborg’s PneuTrac is a tailored solution that helps make fruit cultivation both productive and sustainable.
How do you maneuver a heavy tractor around the slippery slopes of a rain-drenched vineyard while minimizing the damage to topsoil, roots and plants in the process? It’s a risky business, and when it goes wrong there can be a hefty price to pay. Not only might vines fail to yield the kind of harvest that growers expect, but the safety of the driver is also at stake. What’s more, in a bad case of soil erosion, the damage can be serious.
For years, Trelleborg has been working to meet the specific needs of fruit farmers, listening carefully to their increased demands for innovation and cutting-edge technology. Now Trelleborg has come up with the answer to these needs: PneuTrac, a tire engineered to boost a farming operation’s productivity, sustainability and efficiency. In short, it’s a hybrid solution that is set to change the face of fruit farming.
“Roots and topsoil need to be treated with great care, and this becomes even more challenging when you factor in the narrow spacing between rows of vines,” says Emiliana Vesco, a Senior Manager at Trelleborg Wheel Systems who is responsible for marketing training and development. “PneuTrac delivers all the flotation of a conventional agricultural track while reducing the total width of the tractor compared with a standard tracked solution. Besides this, tractors equipped with PneuTrac are on average 20 percent lighter than those with conventional tracks, which in turn means they have less impact on the soil.”
French and Italian vineyard keepers were involved in the testing of PneuTrac. One of them says, “I agreed because we have a sustainable approach to agriculture and we’re interested in soil life. I found the low compaction of PneuTrac particularly successful.”
Vesco says Trelleborg is always looking for environmentally friendly ways to improve the performance and efficiency of its products and solutions. “Our mission is to move from the traditional theme of low soil compaction to a deep overall respect for the Earth,” she says. “Farmers benefit from our care for the environment, which can also bring them real financial savings through increased productivity and lower fuel consumption.
“We firmly believe that PneuTrac is a game-changing innovation that helps to protect valuable agricultural assets, demonstrating our commitment to sustainable farming,” she says. “People’s futures rely on farming. And as the global population continues to grow, our role is to look for innovation-driven solutions to feed the world while addressing the environmental impact of agriculture. Our efforts will help to protect centuries-old traditions, enrich the quality of our foods and protect the planet.”
Vesco says Trelleborg’s research into specialized agriculture drives innovation and feeds the imagination of its engineers. “We are passionate about creating solutions that will secure a sustainable future for farming, and PneuTrac is the proof of that,” she says.
Vesco regards PneuTrac as a potential all-in-one option for any customer who feels uncertain about choosing between a tire and a track, or who is currently forced to have two machines, one wheeled and one tracked.
“Today’s agricultural machine producers are developing integrated precision farming solutions that are GPS enabled, drone assisted, cloud connected and app interfaced,” Vesco says. “Independent tractors, driverless machines and robots are becoming a reality in modern agriculture, and the Internet of Things along with the Big Data environment will make tools, farmers and machines fully connected. This will ensure the best farming procedures, using the right resources, at the right time and in the right place. PneuTrac fits into this scenario perfectly.”
PneuTrac tires ensure optimal root protection and deliver a 20 percent reduction in overall soil compaction compared with standard tracked vehicle.
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