Dewulf strengthens high-tech innovation with heavy duty systems

News | 23 January 2020

With the entry of heavy duty company Dewulf from Winsum, Friesland, the group of high-tech companies of Innovatiecluster Drachten (ICD) celebrates that it has been officially designated as national 'smart industry field lab' and fourth in the Northern Netherlands. The companies are extensively digitized and their machines, production resources and organizations are closely intertwined and therefore an example for the future manufacturing industry.

According to Binne Visser, chairman of Innovatiecluster Drachten, Dewulf is a pearl in the region. "Many MBO and HBO technicians from the region find their job there, while their smart agricultural machines for the cultivation of potatoes and root crops are known worldwide for their good quality." high-tech business cluster. According to Visser, this is a nice extension that fits well within the scope of the ICD. ,,With Dewulf, we get the opportunity to share techniques and knowledge from another area of work. This is the next step in the development of our cluster.”


Johan Boonstra, Plant Manager of Dewulf Group, realizes that technological development is crucial to remain a trendsetter. “We work with our team of specialists on a daily basis on product improvement and (technological) innovation. Technological advantage is simply crucial for our customers. However, developments are moving so fast that we can no longer keep up on our own. That is why we are looking forward to the collaboration within Innovatiecluster Drachten.” Boonstra finds partners at the high-tech companies to increase the innovative strength of his company and the region. “We are happy to offer the employees of tomorrow the opportunity to gain internship and work experience with us. In this way we strengthen our position in the region.”

field lab

The field lab status does not come out of the blue. According to Visser, the ICD companies show that they can produce smartly and very flexibly. “Both in terms of the product – the features, the quality and the design – as well as the quantity and the delivery time. Moreover, a core brand of smart industry is the particularly efficient use of raw materials. In this way we contribute to a sustainable world.”

Field labs are practical environments in which companies and knowledge institutions develop, test and implement Smart Industry solutions in a targeted manner. They also provide an environment in which people learn to apply these solutions. In addition, they strengthen connections with research, education and policy on a specific Smart Industry theme. The Netherlands has 41 Smart Industry Field Labs, in which more than 500 companies, knowledge institutions and governments work together. Examples in the Northern Netherlands are the testing ground for the latest generation of mobile internet 5Groningen, shared smart factory Technologies Added in Emmen and the collaboration of the Northern manufacturing industry Region of Smart Factories.


From its expertise and production center in Winsum (Fryslân), Dewulf has been leading the development of innovations for planting and storage technology for 80 years. Dewulf is a top player on a global scale in agricultural machinery for the cultivation of potatoes and root crops. The Dewulf Group carries the well-known brands Dewulf and Miedema and has no less than 150 years of combined experience with its 3 locations – in Belgium, the Netherlands and Romania. The group is therefore rightly regarded as a reference in the development and manufacture of agricultural machines for tillage, planting, harvesting, storing, sorting and transporting potatoes and vegetables. Market knowledge, continuous innovation, pleasant cooperation and a passion for the sector are the cornerstones of policymaking. With a close-knit team of more than 300 colleagues worldwide, the group realizes a turnover of more than 70 million euros (2019).