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Bennett & Co (Crop Storage Engineering) Ltd
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We design and build facilities for grain and vegetable storage
We design and build facilities for grain and vegetable storage

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Bennett and Co note that the capacity of grain storage projects being planned is increasing which requires increasingly more detailed planning and project management as well as design.  April 2015 saw the introduction of updated Construction Design and Management Regulations.  Bennett and Co are well equipped to provide advice to clients to ensure that they meet the requirements of CDM2015.  Bennett and Co can provide a complete project management solution from initial design through planning to completion; undertaking principal designer and principal contractor roles under CDM2015.
 
But CDM2015 does not just apply to new projects but also any refurbishment and updating of existing facilities, so it is important that clients meet the requirements of the regulations.
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New 4000tonne potato store currently nearing completion.  This was laying the floor with laser screed
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One 2013 season project involved insulating a general purpose barn with 75mm of spray foam and installing Farm Electronics louvres and mixer box unit.  The client has found significant quality improvement with the 400tonnes stored in the new store compared with storing the same variety in his other stores, resulting in increased sale values and profit earned.
 
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Bennett and Co has completed a number of major projects for this harvest with the emphasis on grain stirring, a drying technique that Mike Bennett has been involved with since its earliest introduction into the UK both on floor and in silo.
 
Bennett and Co were approached by a client near King’s Lynn to replace their old silos and continuous flow drier with three 1000tonne stirrer silos.  The project commenced with the demolition of the old facility in the second week in April and was ready to take grain at the end of July, just in time for this year’s early harvest.
 
Working closely with DanCorn on the detailed design and project management Bennett and Co were able to obtain good lead times due to DanCorn’s large stock holding in Denmark and speedy erection with their own team.
 
It is vitally important that silo bases are cast to the close tolerances required for the drying floors and DanCorn believe the bases cast for these silos are some of the best they have seen so far.  In addition the ground work contractors had to construct an intake pit for 18tonnes of grain.  The silos are loaded by 120tph conveying equipment and unloaded using sweep and discharge augers which load direct into a lorry.  A number of control features have been added not normally included on DanCorn systems, such as monitoring and controlling crop temperature following drying, monitoring stirrer and controlling discharge auger functions.  This has been achieved working with TRYAC who built the control panels and Bennett and Co’s electrical sub-contractors who already had experience with DanCorn systems.
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It is now some 20 plus years since Bennett and Co’s Mike Bennett sold and installed his first Harvest Installations Maxi stirrer system; the first into Norfolk.  Stirring to aid bulk drying of grain is now a standard means of speeding up and enabling efficient drying in on-floor stores to greater storage depths.
 
A 1000tonne silo with stirrer drying offers efficient and cost effective drying and storing and Bennett and Co can supply a complete system including loading and unloading equipment.
 
For harvest 2014 Bennett and Co have seen increased interest in grain stirring with projects involving both on floor stirrers and silo stirrers.  Bennett and Co continues to work with Harvest Installations installing both Maxi stirrers and Constant Humidity Controller burners that have been continuously updated and improved over the intervening years
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Bennett and Co have undertaken a larger number of potato storage projects for this season than recent years with a number of enquiries already for next year.

The increasing number of growers with stores spread over a wide area increases the need for remote monitoring.  This can be a simple as a GSM auto dialler providing text messages giving warning of problems in the store or full computer monitoring and control.  Bennett and Co offer control systems to meet any client need.

A large number of insulated motorised louvres have been supplied fitted into stores being up rated.  For quality and purpose Bennett and Co have chosen Farm Electronics louvres.

In addition to this Bennett & Co are able to supply PV solar panel arrays for barn roofs and for powering control equipment in remote locations.
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The increased size of many projects mean that planning applications may be determined under major development rules taking thirteen weeks rather than eight weeks.  Bennett and Co advise clients to get started early in looking at these projects, if they are to be ready for harvest 2014.

Whether it’s new “green field” sites or improvement of existing facilities Bennett & Co are capable of dealing with detailed planning issues with local authorities, environmental and safety problems associated with demolition, designing solutions to alleviate potential noise nuisance, piling and complex foundations, as well as designing for drying and storing the crop to the client’s brief and providing health and safety planning within the Construction Design and Management Regulations.

Bennett & Co work with a number of especially selected subcontractors to produce high quality outcomes using market leading suppliers of steel frame buildings, silos, continuous flow grain driers, bulk handling equipment, grain cleaning and processing equipment, fans, modulating burners, grain stirrers, timber tunnels and drying floors and state of the art control and monitoring equipment.
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