HIROSHIMA, JAPAN — Satake and LAMICO had their first research and development meeting on April 22 to discuss development of a high-efficiency circulation type dryer.

“The kick-off meeting was a great success,” said Shoji Teranish, Satake’s sales manager in charge of Vietnam. “We mutually agreed on who develops which portion of the dryer. We plan to perfect the production system of the high efficiency circulation type dryer by the end of 2019 and begin sales in early 2020.”

Grains, such as rice, are dried after harvest for long-term storage. Rice processing facilities in Vietnam often use a flat-bed dryer, drying with hot air from the bottom of the storage bin, due to its lower equipment cost. However, a large surface would be required for its installation and it may take up to 72 hours to dry paddy evenly which enables the production of high-quality premium rice for domestic consumption and export.

The latest paddy dryer is the circulation type dryer, which utilizes advanced technology to efficiently re-circulate the grain and substantially reduce drying time to approximately 20 hours. This type of dryer is widely used by large-scale rice processing plants worldwide, including Vietnam. However, although more efficient than the flat-bed type, its higher initial investment costs hinder their implementation by smaller rice processors.

In 2018, Satake launched Satake Vietnam Co., Ltd., to further expand its sales territory to cater not only to larger scale processors but also smaller processors. To reduce the processors’ investment cost on the circulation type dryer, Satake sought means for domestic production in Vietnam.

On the other hand, LAMICO, who specialized in manufacturing grain processing equipment, including storage system in Vietnam, sought to improve the function of their products to further expand market share. The joint R&D agreement signed on Feb. 22, 2019, is a result of matching the needs of both companies.