Since 1999, Kevin Woods Machinery Ltd has been supplying the fresh produce sector with grading, washing, weighing and packaging equipment. As well as being an agent for Tong Peal Engineering, Manter BV, Upmatic and Audion Elektro, the company stocks a huge line of quality used machinery.
Celebrating 15 years in business, Kevin Woods Machinery is a family-run concern based in the potato and vegetable growing heartland of north Co. Dublin. Its premises at ‘The Inch’, Balbriggan is just two minutes off the M1 Motorway at Exit 6.
Prior to setting up the company in which he is joined by his sons Kevin Jnr and Jake, Kevin Woods had acquired a wealth of knowledge and experience from working for Ennis Machinery (now Armstrong Machinery) in Naul, Leinster Farm Machinery in Duleek, Co. Meath and Derek Plant Machinery in Lusk.
Since then, Kevin Woods Machinery has become an important link in the Irish potato and vegetable growing chain. The company has supplied new and used machinery to hundreds of satisfied growers up and down the country, earning a reputation for quality, excellence, reliability and value-for-money in the process.
“I got to know the business during my time with Ennis Machinery, Leinster Farm Machinery – who I worked with for seven years – and Derek Plant Machinery, and that has stood me in good stead,” says Kevin.
“We supply only the best equipment to potato and vegetable growers. We work very closely with them and fully understand their needs. It is a small field in which everyone knows everyone, so having a good name is very important.”
Kevin Woods provides machinery from grading, washing and weighing all types of potatoes and vegetables to packaging equipment. He is proud to be an agent for Tong Peal Engineering, Manter BV, Upmatic and Audion Elektro – four of the biggest names in the industry.
Tong Peal Engineering is a leading UK manufacturer of custom-built machinery for washing, grading and handling potatoes and vegetables. The Lincolnshire-based company – which has been in business for over 80 years – manufactures a wide range of products, including the VISAR Sortop, which can sort any batch of carrots consistently and efficiently, completely removing the need for manual sorting.
Manter BV is a world leader in the manufacture of all types of weighing equipment for potatoes, fruits and vegetables. A Dutch company, its equipment is capable of weighing produce from 500grams to 25kgs.
Manter can offer solutions for your specific weighing and / or packaging problem. Its machines are developed and assembled at one location, resulting in a complete, qualitative line of machinery that connects perfectly and functions efficiently as one. Quality for Manter means exact, reliable and durable machines, keeping maintenance costs low.
The German brand Upmatic is renowned for its bagging and packing equipment. Upmatic equipment is fully automatic and computer-controlled. The market-leading 2112 Upmatic bagger is equipped with a printer and connected to a touch screen and has a capacity of 24 tonnes per hour in packs of 25kg. A collecting belt feeds the batch to the appropriate filling and sealing machines, with two vibrating plates ensuring that the product is uniformly spread.
Audion Elektro manufactures high-quality packaging, sealing and vacuuming machines. Another Dutch company, Audion’s range of packaging machines include manual sealers, vacuum sealers, tray packaging, shrink, medical and fully automatic. Audion offers growers a large choice of packaging machines that meet their production requirements.
Kevin Woods Machinery stocks a comprehensive range of used equipment, which accounts for about 50 per cent of overall sales. “Our second-hand stock is top quality. Given the harsh economic climate of the past few years, it’s no surprise that our second-hand sales have shot up and are now on a par with new sales,” the affable managing director explains.
Repair and maintenance is another key part of the business, which is headed up by Kevin Jnr. The company offers extensive repair services, including preventive and predictive maintenance, diagnostics and evaluations. His technicians can carry out repairs on-site and are equipped with portable machinery and fully outfitted, travel-ready took boxes aimed at specific repairs. A quick response to essential repairs is always guaranteed.
Kevin Woods Machinery encompasses KWM Landscaping, which is run by Jake who is fully qualified to carry out landscaping work in the domestic and commercial sectors.
The company also offers warehousing space beside its Balbriggan premises. Whether you need a standalone warehouse or cross-dock or if you are a customer in one of the company’s shared facilities, you will receive the benefit of an experienced operations team and customised solutions.
Kevin believes more needs to be done to market potatoes in the face of growing competition from other staple foods such as pasta and rice.
“I’d like to see potatoes promoted better. It is as easy to cook a potato as rice or pasta. Potato is a healthy food and can satisfy hunger for longer. But these facts aren’t being promoted enough to the public and potato consumption is falling as a result.
“My own theory is that there are too many potatoes being grown, leading to an oversupply in the market. If the potato farmer isn’t making money, we’re not making money so it’s vital from our perspective that we have a buoyant industry,” he concludes.
Kevin Woods Machinery Ltd
Taken from Irish Tractor & Agri magazine Vol 2 No 6, November 2014