Claydon Drills, European market leader in direct strip seeding technology, has further expanded its UK distribution network by appointing a dealer in Hampshire to handle the full range of Claydon Opti-Till® products across central Southern England.
Seale Agri Limited, which operates from Manor Farm, Chilcomb near Winchester, will sell, service and support Claydon products in an area bordered by the Isle of Wight in the south and M4 motorway in the north, and from Worthing in the east to Bournemouth in the west. To underline its commitment to the Claydon brand, Seale Agri has added a 4.8m Hybrid T trailed drill, 6m TerraStar light rotary cultivator and 7.5m Straw Harrow to its demonstration fleet.
The Claydon Opti-Till® System is a holistic approach to crop establishment which delivers consistently good, high yielding crops at low cost. At its heart is the Claydon Hybrid drill which incorporates unique, patented leading tine technology that provides exceptional versatility in all climatic conditions, soil types and crops.
In addition to tractor-mounted and trailed Hybrid drills from 3m to 8m wide, the Claydon range includes Straw Harrows from 3m to 15m and the 6m TerraStar® light rotary cultivator. The latest addition is the TerraBlade inter-row hoe in widths from 3m to 8m, which helps growers to control weeds in band-sown crops more efficiently and more effectively than relying solely on chemicals, with significant cost and environmental benefits.
Seale Agri’s owner John Seale, who began working in the farm machinery trade during 1974 and went into farming 40 years ago, states:
“During my career I have seen and tried all types of drills and crop establishment systems. The Opti-Till® System is as good as it gets and now is the right time to become involved with Claydon. It makes so much sense in an environment where many farming businesses are looking to reduce production costs, there is an increasing need to improve timeliness because the UK’s changeable weather catches people out every year, good staff are becoming hard to find and environmental legislation is increasing.
“On our own farm we used a plough-based system for many years, but it exacerbated the blackgrass situation and two years ago we changed to min-till, which also had its problems. This autumn we will be using the Claydon Opti-Till® System exclusively and highlighting the benefits to our customers.”
Rob Dunk, sales manager for Claydon in the UK and ROI, adds: “We are delighted to be working with Seale Agri, a highly-professional, family-owned business which, like Claydon, has a long history in the agricultural machinery and farming sectors. Their appointment is an extension of our strategy to offer the Claydon Opti-Till® range through a network of professional dealers. Seale Agri’s Claydon specialists, Adrian Seale and Simon Sinclair, will be supported by our own manufacturing, service and sales staff who have decades of experience of Claydon products and using the Opti-Till® System.
“Farming businesses have little influence over input costs and end prices, but they can dramatically reduce production costs and increase yields by adopting a much more cost-effective and efficient crop establishment system. Many now appreciate that the innovative Claydon Opti-Till® System provides an attractive alternative to conventional full cultivations and min-till systems which are time consuming, expensive, can over-work the soil and destroy its structure.
“Opti-Till® is particularly relevant now because it provides significant opportunities to save money, combined with massive improvements in soil health and structure, lower carbon emissions, reduced soil erosion and environmental benefits which are in line with the likely future requirements of the Basic Payments Scheme.
“With more frequent extremes of weather it is vital to operate a system which is effective in all conditions, minimises risk and provides sufficient capacity to exploit narrow weather windows. This allows all types of agricultural seeds that can be air-sown, from herbs and grasses to cereals and maize, to be drilled at the right time, in the right conditions and ultimately produce the high yields required to generate sufficient financial returns for farming businesses to be financially sustainable.
“The advantages were particularly apparent during 2019/20, when many Opti-Till® owners were able to establish crops successfully when conditions were either too wet or too dry for other methods to operate. This has led to a surge in enquiries and orders from existing and potential customers throughout the UK. To handle this we have recently appointed a number of new dealers to further expand our UK network, including Rickerby Limited in the North East/North West of England and Southern Scotland, Sharmans Agricultural Limited in The Midlands, and Collings Brothers who cover Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Northamptonshire and surrounding areas.”
Claydon is a global pioneer in crop establishment technology which employs 47 staff at its design, manufacturing, distribution, and service centre in Wickhambrook near Newmarket. The company is experiencing strong demand for its products, which are marketed and sold to customers throughout the UK and overseas by the company’s Commercial Team, headed by commercial director Spencer Claydon. Approximately 80 per cent of production is exported to 35 countries, from Europe to New Zealand.