The Nearly Naked Veg Company prides itself of its environmental credentials, so when it came to purchasing the equipment needed to tend its crops there was only one manufacturer for the job – Kubota.
Since buying its first Kubota L3200 mid-range tractor in December 2008, The Nearly Naked Veg Company, which is based in Avonwick, Devon, has invested in a Kubota RTV900 all-terrain utility vehicle and has just taken delivery of a Kubota B2230 compact tractor.
The Nearly Naked Veg Company aims to strike a balance between conventional large farms, that grow low-cost bumper crops using preventative chemicals and mined fertilisers for nutrition, and the expensive produce grown by labour-intensive, low-yield organic farms. As a result, the company uses traditional methods such as hoeing and raking to prevent weeds and only interferes with nature when it absolutely has to in order to cure diseases.
Since selling its first Vegetable Box in June 2009, the company has grown rapidly, selling around 150 boxes per week, as well as supplying local restaurants, hotels and pubs. The company also offers a contract grass cutting service across the South Downs area.
The company farms 34 acres in total, of which 23 acres are based on their own farm, with the rest around ten miles away. As these are divided into two to three acre fields, The Nearly Naked Veg Company founder Benjamin Brunning explains that it was important that any machines the company purchased were versatile and environmentally friendly.
Benjamin said: "As a company, we try to minimize our impact on the environment, so a mid-range tractor was the obvious solution. In agricultural circles, Kubota is the ‘Rolls Royce’ of tractor manufacturers and, because all their machines are designed to be as economical as possible, they fit our own philosophy perfectly. So when it came to buying our first machine, it was a case of which model rather than which manufacturer.
On the advice of Keith Wilcox at local Kubota dealer Medland, Sanders and Twose (MST), Benjamin Brunning chose the L3200 mid-range tractor. This versatile machine is extremely easy to use and offers exceptional productivity, together with consistent economical performance.
It combines a powerful 32hp three cylinder Kubota E-TVCS high torque-rise engine with a live continuous running PTO to ensure optimum performance from implements. Four wheel drive, as well as eight forward and four reverse gears ensure maximum traction even on tricky ground. What’s more, operator comforts such as a padded cushion seat and power steering help to reduce operator fatigue.
"The Kubota L3200 is powerful enough to do everything we need it to, from ploughing and ground preparation, to drilling for crop planting and, when required, crop spraying – all without guzzling fuel," explained Benjamin.
Next, The Nearly Naked Veg Company purchased the class-leading Kubota RTV900 all-terrain utility vehicle equipped with road-legal specification because they needed a reliable economic workhorse that could transport equipment and produce, as well as being powerful enough to pull a trailer when required.
The 21 hp RTV900 has a maximum speed of 25 mph and is designed to offer optimum performance over even the most difficult terrain, making it ideal for use both in the field and on the road. Powered by a Kubota 22hp E-TVCS three cylinder water-cooled diesel engine, it features a unique three-range variable hydrostatic transmission system (VHT), advanced automotive type suspension, power steering and the highest ground clearance in its class.
"Quite simply, we couldn’t manage without the RTV900 now," explained Benjamin. "It’s so powerful it can transport up to 50,000 plants at a time and is essential for bringing the crops back to the farm to make up the veg boxes."
The latest Kubota machine to be added to The Nearly Naked Veg Company fleet is the B2230 compact tractor, which thanks to its powerful three point linkage means that the company can use it with a mid-mounted mower for its contract mowing services.
Like the company’s other Kubota machines, the B2230 is environmentally friendly thanks to the reduced emission levels and exceptional fuel economy offered by Kubota’s innovative ETVCS engine technology. What’s more, it offers high power output together with exceptional performance for its class, fully hydrostatic power steering, bi-speed turn and four wheel drive as standard.
"As a small business, versatility is important – I need machines that can do everything not just one specialist job and the two Kubota tractors and their RTV900 can do just that. And the great thing about Kubotas is that they’re easy to use – I can put even the most inexperienced farm hand on them and I know they won’t break!" added Benjamin Brunning.
Kubota provides a market-leading range of compact tractors and ride-on mowers, together with its class-leading RTV900 all-terrain utility vehicle and is the global leader in the sub 50hp tractor sector.
Their machines have a legendary reputation for quality, performance, reliability, ease of operation and outstanding value-for-money and a national network of Kubota tractor and groundcare dealers, such as Medland, Sanders and Twose (MST), provides the highest standards of advice and after-sales service.