by Derek Alberts

Incotec

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To date, R17 million worth of investment has been earmarked for the agri-business facility which, in simple terms, deploys its arsenal of technologies to enhance the viability and germination of seed. Incotec plans to use its launch pad in the city to service sub-Saharan Africa in what is a ringing endorsement of the region’s food production potential and a commitment to precision agriculture.

The Pietermaritzburg facility, headed by Dr Tertia Erasmus, represents Incotec’s newest operation and also the first in Africa, in addition to its offices in Brazil, Germany, India, China, Australia, Japan and the United States.

Among the guests at Incotec’s opening were chief executive JanWillem Breukink, global research and development director Bob Legro, and the agricultural consul attached to the Netherlands embassy in Pretoria, Niek Schelling. 

Several key themes were expounded by the speakers: the importance of food security in a context of declining resources, including land, burgeoning global populations, the reality of climate change and the deployment of precision agriculture to address these challenges.

A particular strength of Incotec’s operations is its global reach and access to expertise and research. In the words of Breukink, Incotec’s mission “is to do more with less by adding value to seeds”.  To this end, Incotec’s encrusting and pelleting division and its analytical testing facility – already in operation in Pietermaritzburg – have received a rousing reception from the agricultural and horticultural sectors. It bodes well for the rolling out of its other services: upgrading, priming, disinfection, film coating, application of actives and additives.

As a measure of its determination, this week Incotec is hosting 20 of its top research & development scientists in KwaZulu-Natal to hone its strategic focus.

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