What is the future in seed conditioning and grain processing?






In the agroindustry, changes happen all the time. At Westrup this is no different. In the coming months new and interesting developments will take place.



Since 1987, when we officially opened our office in the US, Geoff Rudesill has been in charge of running Westrup Inc. Though, after many years of loyal service to Westrup, Geoff is about to retire and following this, Kevin Kidwell – now Sales Manager will take on the role as new Country Manager for Westrup Inc. from 2019.

During times like these, there is always much focus on sharing knowledge and experiences in preparation for the person taking over. Over the years, Geoff has been able to follow the developments in the agroindustry first-handedly. He recalls some of the first discussions he had with customers were explaining the advantages of ball cleaning rather than brush cleaning. He remembers how we have moved from small individual processing companies to large scale conditioning facilities owned by multiregional or multinational corporations.

Having followed the developments over the years, Geoff anticipates that the focus of both farmers and conditioning and processing facilities is moving towards improving the quality of the prime product. And with new seeds being developed all the time, the facilities need to be up to date on how to handle their machines and the incoming product. Extracting every seed and grain and minimizing the amount of prime seed found in the cull fraction is therefore a high priority for many of these facilities as this will set them apart from competitors.



The one constant for businesses today is the dynamic change with what their customers need and demand, and how they can react to this to structure their companies and products to thrive in today’s business” says Geoff and continues “the large conditioning facilities look at all stages of the conditioning and monitor the incoming seed stream, the prime finished seed and also all the cull fractions”. The need for higher precision during conditioning and processing is therefore more essential now than ever.

This is backed up by Kevin, who has also been following the changes closely. He foresees, that automation will become an area where conditioning and processing facilities will focus their attention to provide their customers with the best solution. “Adding controls that can allow the user to access data, utilize batch recipes and remote diagnostics make our customers more competitive” says Kevin.

At Westrup we have developed one of the first automation systems for screen cleaners – the Navigator 4.0 control system. This system allows you to manage not only the air velocity in your machines, but also ensure correct screen placement will decrease the amount of prime product found in the cull fractions. And more features are in the works.

We can all benefit from new technology – that of course when it has been proven to have effect. That is why we work closely with our customers and always test new solutions in


cooperation with them. The Navigator 4.0 solutions were no different. They have all been tested and approved by our customers.

Change is inevitable and being flexible helps you manage change and ensures operational stability. Having a system that enables all your operators understand and set up your machines no matter what product you are running will increase your flexibility. And this is where Kevin’s expertise brings value to your business. Kevin has almost 30 years of experience in engineering, in implementing automated control systems, and in product servicing and maintenance for grain handling and processing facilities.

In today’s high-volume business and ‘just in time’ shipment of seed, the conditioning equipment must operate without problems or shutdowns” says Geoff and continues “Kevin Kidwell brings a positive attitude and desire to help customers achieve their seed conditioning and grain processing goals. He has an excellent grasp on your Westrup equipment and is looking forward to a long career of helping Westrup customers reach their objectives”.

Automation solutions are the future in seed conditioning and grain processing. They provide the extra flexibility you need to keep your operation going and increase uptime. 

With the Navigator 4.0 all your operators are able to run your plant to the same standard as the experts. You are able to monitor the performance of your machine - meaning, you will get the most out of the incoming product and the system will let you know when service and preventive maintenance

is required.

The Navigator 4.0 provides easy access to machine settings, intelligent alarms, recipe management and cloud enabling.

The Adaptive Aspiration Control system automatically re-adjusts the air flow in the product sorting zones to keep the air velocity constant no matter the surrounding conditions – this without your intervention. Ensuring less prime product in the cull fraction.

The Intelligent Screen Management system lets operators know if the correct screens are placed in the screen cleaner. This ensures that you avoid damaging the screens and the possibility of having to re-run the product. The system allows you to monitor and keep track of the wear on the screens, letting you change them in time. 




Nisha Ørsted Johansen