Feilding manufacturer Baker No-Tillage has demonstrated that a production engineering specialist application can deliver New Zealand into what are regarded here as hard-edge markets such as the United States and the EU.The company designs and manufactures the Baker No-Tillage Cross Slot. It is a seed drilling device that simultaneously implants the seed, and its nutrition. It does so with the minimum disturbance to the soil. This means that seeds can be drilled into existing and undisturbed surface residue.The product was germinated at Massey University and has been under continuous development since 1967 by Dr John Baker.The company makes its own heavily patented Cross Slot drill. It also manufactures the tractor-powered implements that apply the device. It also allows users to manufacture their own implements. But to the Feilding company’s own specifications.Its penetration of the EU, considered a hard-option for production engineers here, is a favourable sign for the mooted free trade agreement between New Zealand and the bloc. The Feilding company has sold its seed drill implements into such EU members as the UK, France, Spain, Germany, and Estonia.The Feilding Cross Slots also operate in the Ukraine (application pictured), similarly viewed as a hard-to-grasp export zone by production engineers here.Its marketing in large measure relies on testimonials from agri-business practitioners at home and abroad to the effect that their application of the Cross Slot technique has substantial boosted their yields while containing their costs.The company exports 90 percent of its output and remains one of a tiny group of New Zealand manufacturers in this position. It has also brought back to Feilding the manufacturing role it enjoyed until the 1980s and the advent of import de-regulation.Curiously, it is one of two Manawatu –origin manufacturers exporting the bulk of their output. The other is Palmerston North’s Allflex Industries.Allflex’s ownership though has drifted to a Franco-United States axis. After a threatened switch of ownership to the United States Baker No-Tillage and its Cross Slot remain under local control.
From the MSCNewsWire reporters' desk