Customer service, reliability and gentle handling were the key reasons Norton Farm Potatoes returned to Tong Engineering when they required more potato weighing equipment to meet increasing demand for their potato production.
Established for over 18 years, Norton Farm Potatoes farms 300 acres of Estima and Maris Piper potatoes, together with winter and spring cereals and livestock. In 2013 Norton Farm Potatoes invested in a bespoke potato grading line designed and manufactured by Tong, and they were so pleased with the equipment and service they received, Tong were therefore the first port of call when increased throughput meant they needed to add to their machinery. The next step was integrating a potato weighing machine.
Reducing machinery downtime
Richard Hayman says; “For producers like myself, after sales and support is an essential part of the package when it comes to investing in new machinery. We need to be confident that any potential downtime is minimised with help available quickly if required. Tong has always provided high quality machinery that is backed up with excellent service and installation customer support and we even have a regional agent we can rely on to be here if we need him. With support like this, we had no hesitation in returning to Tong when increasing our equipment line.”
Bagging & Potato Weighing machine installation
Higher volumes of potatoes and a wider range of varieties being produced meant Norton Farm Potatoes needed a more accurate weighing and sorting facility. So earlier this year, Richard had a higher capacity potato bagging and potato weighing machine installed.
Tong supplied a high-output potato weighing machine to feed the existing PacePacker tote stitching line. This new machine features two twin belt feed systems that weigh into load cell mounted tanks, with pneumatic gates and a touch screen display for easy calibration. Also a new conveyer system was designed, manufactured and installed which feeds a new Oldenhuis & Prinsen tote-stacking machine; the complete system was designed to stack 25kg sacks at 9 tons per hour.
Super after-sales service
Edward Tong, operations director at Tong Engineering said: “We’re proud to deliver a complete service at Tong from initial design, right through to after sales. We are delighted when customers like Norton Farm Potatoes return to us when needing to upgrade their equipment, and we recognise just how important having robust support is to our customers, which is why we’re constantly investing in this area of our business. Recently, we have even appointed a new after sales manager to ensure we offer the best possible service, from design, manufacture, installation and beyond.”
Richard concludes: “We’re really pleased with how the new equipment is running so far, it’s allowed us to increase our efficiency and output, and Tong has guided us through every stage.”