AGCO’s Massey Ferguson Manufacturing Facility at Beauvais, France, has been presented with France’s prestigious Factory of the Year 2016 award.
The Beauvais site in Picardy beat ten other shortlisted factories from a wide range of industries in France to win the title.
The Factory of the Year Awards are organised by “L’Usine Nouvelle”, the leading industrial magazine in France. In selecting the overall Factory of the Year Award winner, the Jury looked for a facility that has demonstrated an in-depth transformation initiative and delivered significant performance gains including increases in productivity, quality, competitiveness and market share. Key partner of the awards event and a member of the judging panel is Boston Consulting Group, a leading global management and business strategy specialist.
Operated by Massey Ferguson’s parent company, AGCO, which is headquartered in Duluth in the United States, the AGCO Beauvais site designs and manufactures Massey Ferguson tractors from 75-400 hp. It is France’s largest producer and exporter of farm machinery. Some 14,500 tractors leave the assembly lines each year, 85% of which are shipped to markets all over the world. In the last 12 months, four new MF tractor ranges built at the plant have been unveiled for global markets.
The Factory of the Year award recognises the AGCO Beauvais facility’s successful and wide-ranging reorganisation project known as MF Fast Forward. The plant has seen significant productivity gains through the implementation of Lean Manufacturing processes, 5S good housekeeping techniques and the Hoshin Kanri Continuous Improvement Strategy.
In addition, the Jury highlighted the site’s Quality Transformation Initiative and the clear commitment of Beauvais employees to the transformation process. Latest in-house figures from the plant show a rise in manufacturing quality levels, while Massey Ferguson’s Customer Satisfaction Index reveals improvements in perceived quality by end-users. For example, non-conformances in the production process have been reduced by more than 40% during the last two years from what was already a very good base. Massey Ferguson’s comprehensive Customer Satisfaction survey reveals that in respect of tractor product quality at the point of delivery, the ‘positive answers’ ratio from end-users has moved up to 94% in less than five years.
“It is a privilege and honour to win this coveted award,” says Richard Markwell, Vice President and Managing Director, Massey Ferguson, Europe, Africa, Middle East. “It is a tribute to our 2500-strong workforce at Beauvais who have been the architects of the factory’s major transformation over the last five years. This latest accolade is yet another milestone in our relentless pursuit of continuous improvement to ensure our customers get the very best products for their farm businesses.”
“The award comes in addition the prize won by the Beauvais site earlier this year as France’s Best Foreign Exporter,” he continues. “High-quality manufacturing is at the heart of the renowned reliability and dependability of Massey Ferguson equipment. This, coupled with our leading design and engineering, is ensuring that our famous ‘Triple Triangle’ brand continues to move ahead. Massey Ferguson’s market share increased again across the Europe, Africa, Middle East region last year – the 6th consecutive year we have increased this figure.”
Commenting, Boussad Bouaouli, Vice-President Manufacturing Beauvais says: “The Beauvais Quality Transformation Initiative is part of AGCO’s global objective to be N°1 in Perceived Quality and was considered an outstanding achievement by the Factory of the Year Award Jury members. It illustrates every single employee’s dedication to deliver ‘best in class quality’ for each individual tractor on the production the line. We are thrilled to receive the title of Factory of the Year and congratulate all our employees in Beauvais. This award is truly the result of their commitment and hard work.”
Two completely new tractors in the Massey Ferguson MF 6700 Series, which offer maximum powers of 120hp in the MF 6712 and 130hp in the MF 6713, are the largest, most powerful models in its Global Series of sturdy and straight-forward, all-purpose tractors.
“The MF 6700 Series is the culmination of Massey Ferguson’s significant investment in developing the Global Series, which now includes three completely new ranges that deliver practical, cost-effective operation for the demanding 75hp to 130hp sector,” says Campbell Scott, Director Marketing Services and Public Relations.
The new MF 6700 Series joins the 100hp and 110hp, MF 5700 Series, launched in February at the FIMA show in Spain, as well as the three models from 75hp to 95hp in the MF 4700 Series.
The new tractors, which are equipped with cabs, are designed and built in Massey Ferguson’s Beauvais factory in France. They are built on a 2.5m wheelbase and offering a 5.2t linkage capacity and now extend the modern design with straight-forward operation benefits of the Global Tractor Series’ into another sector.
Strong and agile, they make ideal loader tractors, capable of handling heavy loads. They also are perfect for livestock and mixed farming enterprises, while their ease of operation and low cost of ownership makes them well-suited to working in fleets on large enterprises, or as the second or third main tractor on big arable farms.
With the MF 6700 Series completing the Global Series, Massey Ferguson now offers customers an unrivalled choice of modern 75hp to 130hp tractors for a diverse farming sector.
MF 6700 Series – key features
The MF 6700 Series are powerful 120hp and 130hp all-purpose tractors built on a 2.5m wheelbase, which provides a 5.2t lift capacity with an up-to-date cab, engine, transmission, rear axle and hydraulics.
Both are powered by advanced AGCO Power 4.4 litre, four cylinder engines equipped with a viscous fan and the award-winning ‘All in One’ Selective Catalytic Reduction (SCR) emission control system.
Operators are treated to a class-leading air-conditioned cab, which is designed and built in Massey Ferguson’s Beauvais facility and delivers exceptional comfort and control.
A modern, cost effective and efficient 12 x 12 mechanical gearbox has been developed specifically for the MF 6700 Series. This is equipped with a mechanical shuttle, or with the option of an easy-to-use Power Shuttle option.
An advanced open-centre hydraulic system with tandem pump delivers the flow and pressure required to run modern implements, while the combined flow option delivers 98 litres/min flow to boost loader performance. Both models are fully compatible with Massey Ferguson 900 and Massey Ferguson 900X loader ranges, which are available with parallel and non-parallel lifting.
The robust rear axle, as used on the latest, most advanced MF 5700 SL tractors, is built for hard work. With a maximum 5,200kg lift capacity, this handles modern equipment with ease, offering practical operation with a proven, modern electronic linkage control (ELC).
The 540/1,000rpm Independent PTO comes with electro-hydraulic operation as standard, plus there’s a wide choice of speed options to suit all modern applications.
Massey Ferguson has been presented with France’s prestigious Foreign Exporter award (Le prix de L’Exportateur Etranger). The award recognises the major contribution that the Beauvais Tractor Manufacturing Facility in Picardy makes to the country’s economy and cites the plant as a leading example of a foreign company established and investing in France.
The Export Grand Prix Awards are organised by BFM Business, France’s Economics TV and Radio news channel. In selecting the Foreign Exporter award-winner, the jury looks for a foreign company with significant activity in France, a strong record in new product launches and a recognised Brand in its sector. Key partner of the awards event and a member of the judging panel is Business France, a French government agency which helps businesses in France to boost their exports. At the Grand Prix ceremony in Paris, Muriel Pénicaud from Business France presented the Foreign Exporter prize to Massey Ferguson’s Richard Markwell, Vice-President and Managing Director Europe/Africa/Middle East.
Operated by Massey Ferguson’s parent company, AGCO, which is headquartered in Duluth in the United States, the Beauvais site designs and manufactures Massey Ferguson tractors from 80-400hp. It is France’s largest producer and exporter of farm machinery. Some 14,500 tractors leave the assembly lines each year, 85% of which are shipped to markets all over the world. In the last 12 months, four new MF tractor ranges built at the plant have been unveiled for global markets.
“We are thrilled and honoured to win this coveted award,” says Richard Markwell. “It is a testament to the hard work and dedication of our 2500-strong workforce at Beauvais and the global strength of the Massey Ferguson Brand. The Brand has universal appeal and farmers in all parts of the world are choosing our agricultural equipment to help run their businesses.”
“AGCO continues to make major investments in the Beauvais facility and we are renowned as a global centre of innovation, engineering and manufacturing excellence,” he remarks. Our manufacturing expertise and agility coupled with our wide-ranging, high-quality product line ensures we stay ahead of competitors, meet our customers’ expectations and continue to maintain our lead as France’s number one producer and exporter of farm equipment.”
The substantial cost savings and yield increases achieved by strip-till and no-till cultivation techniques were key talking points at a major seminar and demonstration at Krasnaya Bashkiria farm in Bashkortostan.
Held jointly by AGCO and its Dealer Delta Agriculture, the event was also supported by Bashkortostan’s Ministry of Agriculture. Among the 50 guests were representatives of the Ministry, local district authorities and heads of the largest farms in the region. Machines on display from AGCO brands included the Challenger 7610 strip-till cultivator and Challenger 9830 air-seeder.
Strip-till is a relatively new tillage method being introduced into farming practice in Eastern Europe and is gaining ground among sunflower and maize growers looking to boost both efficiency and productivity. It is classed as a conservation system which uses Conventional and No-Till tillage to promote sustainable farming. It combines the soil-drying and warming benefits of conventional tillage, with the soil-protecting advantages of conservation tillage. The strip-till technique involves disturbing only the portion of soil (or strip) that will contain the seedbed row. It leaves the residue of a prior crop between the new crop’s growing-rows. Chemicals and fertiliser can also be applied at the same time as tillage.
Guests at the AGCO demonstration event were greeted by Mr Rail Fakhrislamov, owner of the 16,000 ha Krasnaya Bashkiria and Mr Ildar Nasyrov Deputy Minister of Agriculture. Professor Khalil Safin from the Russian Academy of Sciences kicked off the day’s agenda with a presentation on the application of new technologies in agriculture.
Delta Agriculture’s Rinat Amirov gave a detailed insight into the benefits of Challenger strip-till cultivators. “The case for strip-till is compelling,” he says. “The prime costs of sunflower and maize production decrease by 30-40% thanks to lower fuel, labour and fertiliser inputs. On top of that, there is less soil erosion, while spring sowing can be started earlier. All in all, growers can expect yield increases of 20-30%.”
Massey Ferguson is introducing a new range of 50hp-85hp tractors for selected African and Middle East markets.
This latest move will further strengthen its product offering in the lower horsepower tractor sector in these territories and offer a broader choice to farmers looking for a rugged and reliable multi-purpose machine. In addition, to complement these new MF 300 Series tractors, a new line of Massey Ferguson-branded implements is also being unveiled for the region.
“Simple, yet powerful, the MF 300 Series tractors are tried and tested, with a strong reputation for straightforward operation and robust dependability – they are ideally-equipped to meet the tough challenges of African and Middle East agriculture,” says Thierry Lhotte, Massey Ferguson Vice-President Marketing, Europe/Africa/Middle East. “More than 1.5 million units based on this renowned design are already at work in the world.”
Affordable and economical to run, these entry-level ‘do anything’ tractors will have strong appeal as the main power source for smallholder farmers or local community groups looking to mechanise or upgrade their agricultural operations. The models can also be a valuable addition to a machinery fleet on larger farms or estates requiring a cost-effective workhorse.
Initially, a choice of six Massey Ferguson matched implements, covering cultivation, planting and transport, will be available for the MF 300 Series.
“As true multi-taskers, the MF 300 Series are equally adept at cultivation, planting, transport or yard duties, working across a wide range of farm sectors including arable, livestock and horticulture,” explains Thierry Lhotte. “Low cost of ownership, easy servicing and maintenance plus expert support from the Massey Ferguson local Distributor ensure a fully-sustainable and inclusive farm mechanisation package.”
Consisting of six models in total, three MF 300 Series models are set for release in early 2016 – the 50hp MF 345 two-wheel-drive (2WD), 75hp MF 375 (2WD) and 85hp MF 385 (2WD and 4WD). The longer wheelbase 50hp MF 350 (2WD), 60hp MF 355 (2WD) and 60hp MF 360 (2WD) will follow later in the year.