In 2018, the agricultural technology specialist added hoeing technology, a promising field for the future, to its product range for professional arable farming. Since then, Steketee, the Dutch machine factory that Lemken acquired for this purpose, has grown rapidly, benefiting from the global shift towards mechanical, camera-controlled weed control. Lemken will therefore invest in a new plant to be built in Dinteloord (North Brabant), not far from the current facility. This new plant will also be connected to the Nieuw Prinsenland Agro Food Cluster as an additional benefit. The factory is scheduled to open its doors at the end of 2023 and will employ at least 30 additional members of staff.
Lemken’s Managing Director Anthony van der Ley explains the reasons for this step, “The world around us is changing fast. That’s why everybody involved in the production chain needs to work together to ensure sustainability in food production. Primary agriculture in particular plays a pioneering role here. New technologies open up a wide range of possibilities. For example, by switching to smart mechanical weed control we can apply crop care products more precisely and gradually reduce their use. That’s why we have been going full steam ahead with the development, production and sales of Steketee machines since 2018.” Van der Ley adds that the company’s ambitions go beyond a simple expansion and modernization: “We want to invest significantly more in product development to build on Steketee’s position as an innovator, for example with the use of artificial intelligence.”
“We place great value not only on our company’s healthy growth, but also on good working conditions,” emphasizes Nicola Lemken. “We are very pleased that we have found a location nearby, so that all our employees can transfer to their new workplace without difficulty. The attractive environment is also important for further recruiting requirements. In addition, we will combine the creative design of the new building with the opportunity to establish ourselves as an experienced and innovative partner for other companies, for universities and colleges, and to offer a springboard for students or startups.”
Iljan Schouten, managing director of Steketee, is excited about the company's future prospects, “Just three years after our takeover of Steketee, we are now taking a big step forward. I'm very proud that Lemken trusts the Steketee brand and our team of young talents and experienced employees. We place great value on new technologies in both our factory and our end products. We want to create not only a state-of-the-art production facility, but also a development centre and an AgroForum as a source of inspiration and knowledge for our national and international customers.”