Case IH invests in African coffee production

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Case IH is increasing coffee harvesting productivity in Africa as its proven self-propelled harvester arrives on the continent for the first time.

Having shown their worth in a number of other markets globally, the Coffee Express 200 will now help increase the efficiencies of production for one of the world’s most important coffee-growing markets.

Incorporating a pair of vertical rollers that turn at 0.5 revolutions a minute, both are fitted with nylon ‘fingers’ of various sizes (1,248 that are 576 mm long and 480 that are 520mm long) that, thanks to an innovative hydraulic brake system vibrate to carefully remove the coffee cherries and minimise plant damage. The distance between the two rollers can be adjusted by 80mm depending on the size and age of the coffee plant being harvested.

Retractable ‘fishplates’ at the base of each of the rollers allow the bush base to pass gently but firmly through the machine and gather the cherries for transfer, before horizontal augers equipped with adjustable-speed leaf fans transport them, via vertical chain-and-flight conveyors.

Powered by an MVM three-cylinder 55hp-producing engine, the vehicle has a 75-litre diesel tank, a harvesting speed of 0.4-2.0 km/h and can work in crops of up to 3.9 metres high.

For the operator, the cab is air-conditioned, featuring an adjustable steering column and seat.

The OEM already offers equivalent harvest products for the grain, sugar cane and cotton harvesters in Africa, so the introduction of the self-propelled coffee harvester will help raise the quality of product engineering for coffee-producers to the level of the other sectors.

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James joined the Industrial Vehicle Technology International team in 2017. Previously he was Assistant Editor on an engineering title for several years and has worked for various other trade magazines before that. James is happily married and has a young daughter who keeps him busy.

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