SOURCE: CNH

CNH

February 12, 2010 00:00 ET

Case IH Launches the Innovative Austoft 4000 Sugar Harvester

The Brand Extends Its Range of Sugar Cane Harvesters With the New Austoft 4000 Aimed to Meet the Specific Needs of Farmers and to Boost Mechanization in the Sugar Cane Business

LUGANO, SWITZERLAND--(Marketwire - February 12, 2010) -  Case IH has launched its new Austoft 4000 sugar cane harvester in Africa, India, South East Asia and China. Designed to meet the specific needs of small and medium sized landholdings, this versatile machine represents an innovative solution that sets the industry standard in the sugar cane business.

The Austoft 4000 is a compact harvester, the overall dimensions are smaller compared to conventional models, designed especially to make it possible to streamline the harvesting process in sugar cane fields that use reduced 1.1 metres ('4 ft') row spacing. The Austoft 4000 represents the pioneering spirit of Case IH. Working in 1.1 metres rows, this machine is narrow enough to harvest one row without compacting the root zone of the adjacent cane row. As an additional benefit, the machine's reduced width means that tires do not run over cane stubble nor cause damage to the ratoon crop.

Powered by a 170 horsepower engine, and weighing about seven tonnes, the Austoft 4000 is capable of efficiently harvesting up to 60 tonnes per hour (pour rate). Built for maximum performance, the Austoft 4000 demonstrates its versatility by harvesting both 1.1 metres ('4 ft') and 1.5 metres ('5 ft') plantations. As such, the Austoft 4000 is suitable not only for areas where mechanization is starting, but also for countries already partially or fully mechanized. This unit is an ideal solution for farmers who have light soils and who plant at 1.1 metres and at the same time, those who want to reap the benefits of mechanization, realizing a significant gain in crop's productivity.

The light Austoft 4000 features outstanding maneuverability and has an excellent base cutter resulting in reduced cane losses. The Austoft 4000's base cutter has been developed to enable the machine to cut flush at ground level, thus collecting the bottom part of the sugar cane which is usually left by manual labor. Featuring innovative billet technology, the on board chopping mechanism not only helps clean cane trash, but also unloads cane billets directly into trolleys, therefore reducing labor, without the need for extra equipment to load the cane.

The Case IH Austoft 4000 can be used to efficiently remove tops which can be easily baled for animal feed. Likewise, cane trash left by the harvester can be quickly collected by balers and transported to cogeneration/bio mass plants. Additionally, the chopped cane trash expelled from the Austoft 4000 acts as an excellent source of mulching, a precious source of organic matter for light soils, and it also aids water retention.

Thanks to its billet technology and the overall features of this machine, subsequent operations of land preparation are quicker and more efficient when compared to more traditional equipment or manual methodologies. The time between harvesting and sowing is minimized with higher yields for farmers, better productivity and quality in terms of the canes collected and savings in terms of equipment, fuel and labor dedicated to these operations.

This easy-to-use and reliable machine represents a unique solution for farmers who want to capitalize on strong sugar prices with an unmatched cost-benefits ratio.

Austoft 4000 sugar cane harvesters embody technological innovations that provide excellent cane quality to the mill, while keeping costs low and ensuring excellent productivity.

Case IH draws on over 50 years of expertise and recognition in the sugar sector around the world, making it the leader in production and sales of equipment for mechanized sugar cane harvesting with the largest product offering in the industry.

Case IH -- Case IH is the professionals' choice, drawing on more than 160 years of heritage and experience in the agricultural industry. A powerful range of tractors, combines and balers supported by a global network of highly professional dealers dedicated to providing our customers with the superior support and performance solutions to be productive and effective in the 21st century. More information on Case IH products and services can be found online at www.caseih.com. Case IH is a brand of CNH (NYSE: CNH), a majority-owned subsidiary of Fiat Group (MI: FIA).

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