"When clients find something isn't going quite right in their processing lines, they come to us," is how John Bloed summarizes his company, Bloed Machinery. "We use our 3D drawing package to quickly design those technical solutions, which we present to the customer. If they agree, we develop those solutions."
The company builds and installs customized machines for various sectors. It supplies machinery for industries like fruit sorting and processing, growing site improvement, food processing, and horticulture. When it comes to fruit and vegetables, the main focus is on sorting and slicing sets. "You can use our machines for apples, pears, plums, cherries, and different types of vegetables."
"These arrive on a conveyor belt and are separated on a second fast-rotating conveyor belt. Finally, there are filling belts at the end that fill the boxes. The products are handled a little, so we're now working on developing a robotic arm for the palletizing," explains John.
Photo right: John Bloed
He has years of experience in the berry sector and, ten years ago, decided to embark on a new adventure with Bloed Machinery. "At Bloedbessen, I was always on the technical side, where I got to design cool gadgets to improve the berries' shelf life. I, however, decided to move forward with my own company."
His fruit sector experience was beneficial in this regard. "I was always the client wanting solutions from suppliers; now I'm one of those suppliers. That means I can think from the customer's perspective and work with them to find the best possible solutions. That always works really well," says John.
Two years ago, his son, Marnix, joined the family business. "That's wonderful, of course. He mainly does the drawing and engineering work. I throw the ideas I always have running through my mind at him. He adds his own ideas and then draws those out."
"Things have accelerated since Marnix joined us. I used to be mostly on the road, but now I'm in our workshops about 90% of the time. We can now create solutions from A to Z for clients' problems," John continues.
Photo right: Marnix Bloed
The company has customers all over Europe. "I've kept in contact with many people from my berry days. Also, I'm used to working with different countries, so there's no country in which we can't operate. We're active in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, England, Hungary, and Poland. We even recently did a small project in Kenya."
The supply of raw materials is the mechanical engineering sector's primary challenge. "Those prices are sky-rocketing, and some parts are being significantly delayed. So far, at least, we haven't lost any clients because of this," John says. "They know this is simply a consequence of the current times. As long as they accept this and we can keep buying at a slight profit, I certainly don't foresee any problems."
Where does he see Bloed Machinery in five years? John fetches his son, and answers, laughing, "I should actually ask Marnix. He, and my other son, who wants to join the company too, are my intended successors. Ultimately, the goal is to put the company on the map and continue building on the custom and series work. By developing and keeping up with the latest techniques on the market, we're trying to appeal to a larger group of customers and establish our name," he concludes.