The Dutch company, Allround Vegetable Processing, delivered no fewer than 708 conveyor belts last year. Of these, 349 were for a single project in the United States. That client took 80 containers too. "Our largest order ever," says Huib Smit senior proudly. "Everyone at Allround was involved. It proves we can tackle a project of any size."
"We worked well with other suppliers like Tomra, Compaq, and Exeter on that project. We integrated those three companies' machines into it. You see the entire plant with 25 Allround bunkers in a row. That makes me tremendously proud. It became a unique state-of-the-art project. We adapted several of our machines for it. We completely redesigned our PD500 rinser. That's a very high capacity potato washer and de-stoner."
Yet, this vegetable processing machine manufacturer's rise in popularity in the States did happen by itself. "We've been active in that country for ten years now. We've attended many trade fairs. We strengthened our market position in a calm, well-considered manner. That's partly thanks to our dealers, Rietveld Equipment and Van Doren Sales, and our spare parts depot. But things went fast this past year. We've welcomed no fewer than 120 new customers worldwide," says Huib.
Stainless steel machines
"Potatoes, onions, and carrots are our top to-be-processed products. For example, we're currently installing a large potato line. It will do 60 tons/hour, 30 tons every 30 minutes. That also in the US. That client already has a 30-ton Allround VP line. We delivered these latest lines within 20 weeks of order confirmation. They'll be operational soon." The stainless steel washing systems also meet a need. "We've sold one of these lines in Canada, for instance. It's used for a wide variety of products. These include carrots, beets, parsnips, and swedes. They'll start using it at the end of this year."
"We work with various optical sorter suppliers when we install these lines. We ensure that the optical sorting is incorporated into the system. But the customer buys this technology/machines directly from the supplier. By now, we have good partnerships with four different suppliers for this," continues Huib.
Factory and two service points in India
The company manufactures machines for the northern hemisphere in the Netherlands. They bought and furnished a new warehouse here. They've also modernized the electrical department. Allround Vegetable Processing builds machines for clients in the Southern Hemisphere in its factory in Ambala, India. It has two service points there, too, in Mumbai and Ahmedabad.
"We've been active in India for 13 years now. After a difficult start, we're now very successful. We're starting to make inroads with the major retailers. Unfortunately, that country is in complete lockdown again. So it's not the easiest time to ship all the materials. But, so far, we've managed to deliver everything on time."
"This year, we'll be expanding our Indian factory by 3,500 m2. That will be complete by year's end. We're building a 600 m2 office area too. It'll house the automation, marketing, and engineering divisions. This is very synergistic. One of our USPs is that we offer complete installations, from 3D design to delivery. We've always been strongly represented in South America. However, we're also expanding in Africa and Asia. Besides India and Bangladesh, we've recently delivered machines to Taiwan and South Korea too," Huib concludes.
Dutch Distribution Center
Allround was an initiator of the Dutch Distribution Center (DDC). They want to offer this in less-developed markets. The idea behind Dutch Distribution Centers is that "we present a complete range of detailed, designed distribution centers. Those are for potatoes, fruit, and vegetables. We shape local Collection Centers (CCs) close to the harvesting areas. These centers can offer processing and storage. Then, the various CCs' products go to the Distribution Center. There, further processing like packing, etc., can take place. Larger storage areas are also available. Finally, goods are shipped to the supermarkets from there."