Going Above and Beyond in the Removal of Dust and Debris

- Jason Kaeb

Anyone who has worked in a seed-handling facility knows that you can clean your facility and within 24 hours (regardless of the amount of activity), it will be dusty again. Whether you’ve got trucks driving through and unloading seed, or you’re moving seed in a seed treatment system, it’s just the nature of the business. Some might believe that creating a low-dust environment will happen “when pigs fly.” Let me tell you, we’ve got some flying pigs.

In the past several years, companies, operators and employees have become less tolerant of dust for a number of reasons, including operator health, equipment longevity, treatment costs and environmental stewardship. We didn’t just listen and sit back. We took action and as a result have designed a dust extraction system and a seed filtration system — two different components designed to help minimize dust and debris before the seed is treated.

Even though the seed being moved has already been cleaned and conditioned, it can still create a dust plume that eventually impacts the operator and equipment. If it’s not cleaned or removed, dust can accumulate on electronic pieces and affect operation, including metering and calibration. The dust extraction system sits on top of the hopper and extracts the dust outside the facility using a blower fan specifically sized for each particular system. Its purpose is two-fold: to create a cleaner facility and to provide a more operator-friendly environment.

While the dust extraction system benefits the operator and longevity of the equipment in the facility, the seed filtration system (patent pending) is there to make the seed treatment process better. As seed is moved to the treater, we introduce air and run it through a double filtration system, which removes any remaining dust, half seeds and hulls from the seed. This means you’re not applying a treatment to debris, which will never germinate, or to dust, which could gum up your system and/or, eventually, the planter in the field. Less chemical waste and more accurate seed treatment application means the seed filtration system improves environmental stewardship and adds to your bottom line.

What makes this unique is that the seed filtration system features a closed-loop, in-line filtration system, completely recirculating the filtered air so that nothing goes outside or back into the environment. Our seed filtration system is undergoing advanced testing and lab analysis in some of the world’s most advanced research and testing facilities. We are doing a limited release of the seed filtration system for spring 2018.

Remember: Taking a proactive approach often yields a better outcome and improves relationships versus taking a reactive approach, which is often driven by an unfortunate event or regulatory pressures.