Strauss Verpackungsmaschinen LLC actually wanted to celebrate its 75th anniversary at this year's expoSE, on November 18 and 19 in Karlsruhe. However, the Corona virus proved to be an obstacle. "At the expoSE, we meet with our customers every year, so this would have been the perfect opportunity," says Sales Manager Matthias Kinzel. "It's a pity that we had to postpone this plan, but for now we hope that the fair can still take place."
It is a slightly different anniversary year than planned, but overall it did not go badly. "The asparagus farmers were among the first to be affected by the virus in Germany. In the end, after some initial difficulties, things went bumpy but still reasonably well. Especially in direct marketing good prices could be achieved. The shortage of labor also ensures that many producers want to invest in new technologies and automation."
"Asparagus farmers are no longer so easily shocked"
However, with the rapid increase in the number of infections, uncertainty is creeping back into the sector: "Many are wondering what impact the virus will have on the next year. The economic situation in Germany and worldwide, which the once again stricter regulations will bring, will be interesting." All in all, however, the mood is confident: "The asparagus sector has always got off reasonably lightly in recent years. Bad weather, over-availability and prices in the basement. One is used to a lot in this industry. You can't shock the asparagus farmers so easily anymore."
"We don't know yet how long the Corona virus will continue to accompany us in our daily lives. But there is no point in getting crazy about it now. We'll take the hurdles as they come and concentrate on continuing to provide the best service for our customers. To this end, much of his work now takes place digitally: "Fortunately, we have sales and technical partners around the world who can support us in this. For those customers whom we are currently unable to visit in person, we are also happy to commission the machines via video chat or maintain them that way."
The Strauss team at the booth at the Fruit Logistica in February 2020
He believes that remote working will become increasingly popular: "For example, I can 'visit' customers at other ends of the world on the same day. This improves communication and makes employees more flexible. Digital trade fairs make it easier to participate. Whether this type of collaboration can replace a face-to-face meeting is debatable, but we still want to use the technology to our advantage as much as possible."
Activity in the company hall
No standstill despite corona
This year, Strauss Verpackungsmaschinen will continue to work on adapting its well-tried machines to the modern needs of the market and to customer requirements. "We are currently working on concepts that offer less packaging and still provide sufficient labelling and identification of the asparagus bundles. Packaging material is to be saved and the consumer is to be sufficiently informed nevertheless. We are now looking for a solution how to combine these two needs in an ideal way."
Representative for the Netherlands:
Op´t Root Landbouwmechanisatie
Herr Gerard Kempkens
6065 NP Montford, Niederlande
Tel.: +31 (0) 475 541 312
Representative for France:
Herr David Bergot
1A rue du fossé des Orphelins
67000 Strasbourg, Frankreich
Tel.: + 33 6 13 44 45 79