Obstbauer Wedeking is a family farm located in Lower Saxony, Germany. In 1994, they started their fruit farm in Hameln with a small strawberry field. They managed the whole operation by themselves, from planting to chopping, picking, and selling the strawberries.
Today things are different, and they are an orchard with full-time staff and seasonal workers helping them deal with the daily operation on the farm. They specialize in growing fruit, especially apples, cherries, and strawberries. Besides, they still have a small portion of wheat, rapeseed, and maize, which is good for crop rotation.
Obstbauer Wedeking sells their products to regional supermarkets and also through Elbe-Obst, a producers' organization and a sales company established in Germany.
A young farm manager, Henrick Alps, manages the production at Obstbauer Wedeking. This summer, in August, she reached out to us to understand how Farmable could help them with team management.
Just before apple harvest, they were looking for a system to optimize their harvest process with:
“At that time, we reached out to Farmable to learn more about your functionalities and understand how best to record our harvest and use the app to manage our picking teams.”
At first, they started implementing Teams & Timesheets and had the farm management platform ready to be used within less than one week. They just went from the idea of implementing a system to the actual adoption and to a new process set up in a short amount of time.
The steps to follow during picking are always the same, but farms implement several systems and different processes. Every farm chooses its own procedure, trying to optimize them as much as possible.
Obstbauer Wedeking’s harvest process:
“We invited the supervisors as crew to Farmable and set up a generic email for them. They also got a smartphone with access to Farmable”. ~ Henrike
Once Obstbauer Wedeking set up their farm on our Farm management system, they added all the harvest teams directly in Farmable.
After the harvest season, Henrike used the harvest logs to review the year/harvest by exporting the results in an Excel spreadsheet available on the Web Portal. Their fruit volumes on their trees were really high this year. As they had been tracking the picking rounds in the mobile app, they already had a good idea of the yield per field. After Henrike analysed the harvest results using the harvest logs, they were happy with the quantitative results for the year.
This success story is a perfect example of how a good team management process accompanied by a farm management system enables farmers to check harvesters’ performance and harvest volumes per day. They can set up successful teams, understand if there are problems in other teams, and work together to have better results. That allows farmers to keep track of the progress and implement future improvements for the next season, doing better year over year.