Eivind Hellum has recently invested in a Fendt 211 Vario in its narrow variation for use in the production of cherries. This enterprising svelvik farmer has been driving a Fendt 208 for 10 years, and thinks that it is a good thing to stick with equipment that works.
“I bought a Fendt 208 V with 85HP around 10 years ago, and I’ve been very pleased with it. This has primarily been used for grass cutting in the orchard, fertilising and spraying and for grinding twigs. Now I need a slightly larger tractor for pulling a tow sprayer, and the choice came down to a Fendt 211 Vario with an 110HP engine and a width of 1.36 metres. This is perfect for my needs,” explains Eivind Hellum from Svelvik in the north of Vestfold. He runs the company Svelvik Moreller together with his brother Gjermund and son Viktor. Production is vulnerable to the effects of the weather and wind, and therefore he is dependent on his equipment working at all times.
“Fendt is very good quality and very little goes wrong with the tractors. Tractors available in such narrow versions are perfect for fruit production. This allows us to get in-between the trees. The PTO front and back is also very practical in restricted areas.
The Fendt 211 is the top model in the 200 V/F/P series. The V model is designed for vineyards, while the F model that Eivind has bought is intended for production where there is a larger distance between rows. The P model is the widest. The Fendt 200 is supplied with the unrivalled Vario transmission.“ The new tractor has everything we need for our use. So far, it has mostly been my brother using the new tractor, but I’m also learning to use the Vario transmission too. A fuel consumption indicator comes as standard for all of the models, and there are a number of adaptation options for equipment.”
A quiet and dynamic three-cylinder AGCO Power engine lies beneath the bonnet, which provides a large amount of power in relation to the machine’s weight, which is considerably less than four tonnes.“ The combination of being physically small and strong at the same time makes it a little powder keg,” explains Eivind.
The production of cherries supplied to Bama has taken place ever since he took over the family farm in 1985. The orchard is on a south-facing slope leading down to Drammensfjorden, and the incline means that there is natural ventilation beneath the protective heat cover he uses to provide stable heat.“ Although I might be towing a 1,500-litre tow sprayer up the hill, I never need to worry that there won’t be enough power.
Morello is the name of an old French cherry variety, and in Norway the word ‘morell’ is used to describe a sweet cherry. Svelvik is the country’s fifth largest fruit district.“ The industry is experiencing growth, and the new generation of fruit growers in this area are focusing on apples, plums, raspberries and strawberries,” explains Hellum. It is the heat and sun that makes the cherries sweet and good. There are many factors that farmers are not in control of, and therefore it is necessary to implement whatever forces possible to affect growth.
“Drainage is important, as is ensuring that the roots aren’t standing in water. Quite a number of hours will be spent on the tractor. Therefore, it’s an advantage that the Fendt 200 series is pleasant to drive, as is the fact that we are sitting comfortably and have a good overview of the trees.
Fendt is known for supplying robust tractors that are economical to run. Eivind’s new tractor was supplied by Eiksenteret Lier and the salesman was Rune Teigen. “I’m very pleased with the assistance I received both from the salesman and the mechanics at Eiksenteret. I’ve just had a service technician here on the farm to look over both of the 200 models and change the filters and oil,” he explains. Finally, it’s not the purchase price but the total cost overall that counts.“ For us, it’s about both small depreciations in value and low operating costs, but also the fact that we are happy on a day-to-day basis when we are using the tractor. After all, this is our work environment. And of course, it’s fun owning such a fine tractor,” concludes Eivind Hellum.