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The Ag Leader Europe team continues to grow!

by Aug 22, 2012International Perspectives, Training & Support

Over the last month, Ag Leader Europe has continued to add some more staff to their team. Over the next few weeks I will be introducing the new members via this blog.


I would like to introduce Sybren Rispens who has been appointed by Ag Leader Europe as Support Manager EMEA. Sybren comes to us with a Wageningen University MSc Degree of Agricultural Technologies, specialising in Precision Farming. Sybren is currently undergoing training on Ag Leader products in the USA and has also already been out in the field on behalf of Ag Leader.

His father is farmer in one of the central polders of the Netherlands. After his studies, Sybren worked on the farm at home to get more hands-on experience in daily practice. After one year on the family farm, Sybren worked as a scientist at a big Dutch coop, doing research and development in respect to crop sensors.

The family farm has 40 Hectares, which is a little smaller than the average in the Netherlands. Average is 50 to 60 Hectares. As the farm is in a polder, it is 4 meters below sea-level. A polder is land that has been reclaimed from the sea by building dykes and pumping out the water. The soil that is left behind is predominantly clay, the old sea-bottom.

The farm is operated with 3 tractors ranging from 60 to 130hp. Only the large 130hp tractor has 4WD, the two smaller ones are 2WD only but they are lighter and therefore reduce soil compaction on this heavy soil. Cultivated crops are potatoes, onions, wheat, carrot and some sugar beets. These agricultural products are high value crops, so, from the small land area the family can have a good living. Due to the high value crops being grown, precision farming is a must. Even on this relatively small area, it soon pays for itself.

Sybren is living in the city of Wageningen. When not working Sybren likes to use his skeelers in summertime, and ice-skates in wintertime. This is all speed skating, with wheels on a road track, or on ice with speed-skates. This is a very typical Dutch pastime!

Sybren has learned on the family farm, that if properly managed, a small farm can also be very profitable. Please welcome Sybren to the Ag Leader team!

Hans Stiekema – Business Manager EMEA