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Breeder purifies DNA 16 times faster with this customized machine

When it comes to matters of non-standard automation solutions, several market players have been asking Romédes for help lately, which has already resulted in a unique DNA purifier for a Dutch potato breeder. Ralph Wessels, sales coordinator at this engineering firm which has both an engineering and a special machinery branch, explains why this breeder approached them.


1536 samples per run
“The breeder wanted us to help them scale up their DNA isolation and purifying process and they did not want to be dependent on one type of disposable any longer. There are no ‘standard’ machines available for that,” Ralph begins.

“We build such specialized custom machines for various industries, including medical, agricultural, plastics, and food industries. This machine, the Magnetic Bead Extractor, does 16 times what standard machines in the market do. It has significantly increased the breeder’s scale.”

This industrialized laboratory machine uses magnets to process and purify up to 1.536 DNA samples (16 times 96-well plates) per run. Although this technique is not a new one, the scale at which this machine implements it is. “I’ve not seen a similar machine on the market yet,” Ralph says.

DNA purification is usually comprised of multiple steps. The user can adjust the process to their liking, making it consist of up to 12 purification or process steps. “To optimize the chemical process, the final purification step, elution, can also be executed while being heated. Furthermore, it is also possible to set the vibration frequencies with which the contaminations are separated from the pure DNA on either low, medium, or high.”

Flexibility in disposables
Few companies in the Netherlands use machines like these on this scale. Nevertheless, Romédes sees plenty of opportunities in the (international) horticulture sector. “We are in contact with several breeders and horticulturalists, some of whom are active in floriculture as well.”

Ralph notices that businesses are no longer interested in scaling up only; they are also particularly interested in not having to be dependent on one type of disposable (one supplier) in the process any longer.

“The potato breeder’s machine can process various types of plates (shallow and deep well) from different brands. Other companies, too, are looking for ways to be more flexible and save production costs. The additional benefit of validation tests is an improved DNA yield with higher buffer solution concentrations. The KASP test performances are improved because of that, too.”

Automation partner
The company not only provides special laboratory automation, it is also possible to automate packaging, handling, and other processes. “We build customized machines for that too. We aim to be a partner in solutions and process improvements,” Ralph concludes.

For more information:romedes
Ralph Wessels
Romédes Specials B.V.
Tel: +31 (0) 544 356 180

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Israel announces creation of global seed company

Two Israeli seed producers, Nirit Seeds and TomaTech, have joined forces to create Israel’s largest vegetable seed company. This synergy will enable unique seed breeding research and development that will accelerate the company’s growth in the international seed markets.

Upon completion of the merger, the company will have more than 80 employees worldwide, including molecular biologists, breeders, agronomists, and others.
The company will improve its breeding activities in Israel, Spain, Mexico and Italy, as well as significantly expand its representation in the Netherlands and North America, with a particular focus on growing vegetables in high-tech greenhouses.

Nirit Seeds is one of the most successful internationally traded tomato and pepper seed producers, investing in the development of revolutionary genetic technologies. TomaTech is one of the leading tomato seed companies in Israel, developing premium varieties, including those resistant to the dangerous Tomato Brown Ruffle Virus (ToBRFV).

The production of crop seeds is one of the most advanced and high-tech sectors in Israel. According to the Seed Department of the Federation of Israel Chambers of Commerce, seed exports currently generate $200 million in annual revenue. There are about 25 large and medium-sized companies in the local industry.

For reference. According to market research, the global vegetable seed industry is valued at $8 billion a year and is growing at a CAGR of 8%.

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Karachay-Cherkessia became one of the leaders in the production of greenhouse vegetables at the end of 2021


Greenhouse vegetable production in 2021 reached a record 1.4 million tonnes. According to the Ministry of Agriculture of the Russian Federation, the leaders among the regions in this segment are the Karachay-Cherkess Republic, Lipetsk, Moscow, Kaluga, Volgograd, Novosibirsk, Saratov, Chelyabinsk regions, Krasnodar and Stavropol Territories, the Republics of Bashkortostan and Tatarstan. These regions account for more than 60% of the total production in the country. The intensive development of greenhouse projects in our country helps to provide Russians with fresh vegetables all year round. Last year, the harvest in winter greenhouses updated the 2020 record – more than 1.4 million tons of products were received. Including the production of cucumbers amounted to at least 830 thousand tons, and tomatoes – 590 thousand tons. It is expected that by 2025 the volume of vegetable production in year-round greenhouses will be at least 1.6 million tons of vegetables.


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December: Special Year Overview

In 2022, it will be 22 year since the new millennium started. Can’t believe it? Neither can we, but it is true. Before we go there, it is time to reflect on what has happened this year. Over the next couple of weeks, we will look back at 2021 and we will highlight the most important events that impacted the industry.

New greenhouses, events, even a few shows, technical novelties, and all other relevant news will pass by, offering you something other than Covid to talk about during Christmas and New Years’.


Wish your customers Happy Holidays
This special also offers an opportunity to put your company in the spotlight with a banner in this special box. This banner can be booked until December 24 on our newsletters. For more information, feel free to send an email to: 

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