The start-up company GrainSense Oy from Oulu launched the sale of the first handheld grain quality measuring device designed for farmers. With the help of the device, farmers can quickly measure the protein, moisture, oil, and carbohydrate content of their grain. The product gives farmers more control over the quality and pricing of their crops.
GrainSense Oy is a spin-off company of VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland aiming to enter the more than billion-euro world markets with its cloud-based services and measuring devices based on optical technologies. The device applies the new method of using the near-infrared spectroscopy devised by Ralf Marbach, who used to work as research scientist at VTT.
The company announced in its press release on 8 February 2018 that it has launched the sale of its products by releasing the first batch of 30 grain quality measuring devices in the Swedish, Finnish and Baltic markets. The product is the first grain quality measuring device that is reasonably priced and sufficiently durable for farmers to acquire and use.
The handheld GrainSense device measures the protein, moisture, oil, and carbohydrate content − the key constituents of crop value − in the grain and other crops. Powered by a battery, the device analyses the quality of grain from a few kernels in 30 seconds. The service includes a mobile application with GPS positioning. The cloud-connection function included in the device supports value-added services that improve productivity and profitability.
For the first time, farmers, cereal seed producers and plant breeders have the possibility to measure the key quality features of their crops quickly, even before harvesting, and, based on the results, make decisions that enhance their productivity and profitability. The device also helps meat producers monitor and adjust the protein content of feed in real time during growth. This has a major impact on the profitability of meat production.
"Ralf Marbach's invention, which the GrainSense's product relies upon, is based on a new method of illuminating and measuring the sample with near-infrared light. The method guarantees an efficient interaction between the light and the sample, generating accurate measurement data. It is great to see how innovations created at VTT transforming into products and aiming at the international markets," says Kimmo Solehmainen, Key Account Manager at VTT.
Berner Ltd, GrainSense's distribution partner, has began its sales efforts and launched the device in the markets of Sweden, Finland and the Baltic Countries.