Page 12 - Pork Newspaper - February 2018
P. 12

BlockGrain raises $1 million from the NEM blockchain fund
Effluent pump to cut clogs
BLOCKGRAIN, an Australian agriculture supply chain tracking startup, has announced it has successfully raised 800,000 XEMs, equivalent to $1 million, through the NEM block- chain investment fund (cryptocurrency).
The startup, which was founded in 2014, is the first major Australian blockchain project to take advantage of NEM’s $90 million global investment fund.
An initiative by not-for- profit organisation NEM. io Foundation, the fund is available to startups and businesses interested in developing NEM block- chain technology-based products or services.
BlockGrain is a platform that allows farmers, bro- kers and logistic compa- nies to track grain at har- vest, through the supply
chain to consumers.
It also enables farmers
to provide the ability to create, manage and track commodity contracts.
BlockGrain co-founder and CEO Caile Ditterich said the funds will be used to integrate its cur- rent platform with NEM’s blockchain technology.
“BlockGrain was cre- ated with the mission to solve real-life problems faced by the agriculture industry today,” he said.
“We know the complex- ity of the supply chain coupled with lack of meaningful information and data results in major efficiency and productiv- ity issues for our farmers, brokers and logistic com- panies.
“We’re at a stage now where we’re ready to in- vestigate the potential application of blockchain into our platform.
“We’re looking at NEM’s technology to help us automate and provide greater visibility within the agriculture supply chain.”
Unlike other block- chains or digital ledgers, NEM’s ‘plug and play’ ap- proach is designed to offer startups and businesses a customisable, easy and secure method of making transactions and storing digital assets. Foundation di- rector for Australia and New Zealand Jason Lee said BlockGrain is an exciting example of po- tential real use cases of blockchain.
“For the past few months, we have been looking for companies in Australia that have been developed to either im- prove the way companies do business or are aiming to make a societal differ-
ence,” he said. “BlockGrain is on a
clear path to making this a reality and partnering with them is a natural fit for NEM.
“They understand how they can benefit from blockchain and how it works, and we’re con- fident we will be able to integrate their current business into our plat- form.”
Nelson Valero, coun- cil member for Foundation, said Block- Grain will add tremen- dous credibility to NEM as a technology platform.
“BlockGrain is well po- sitioned to go internation- al and scale very quickly due to the large number of adopters that are either testing the beta system or already contracted to use the new BlockGrain plat- form.
“They are an established business with great po- tential.”
BlockGrain already has an established network of clients ready to use its platform as soon as it becomes available in Q2 2018.
This includes Rise Agri, Australia’s largest inde- pendent grain brokerage group and responsible for managing 1000 farmers nationally.
It looks to integrate NEM’s blockchain tech- nology by Q4 2018.
The NEM blockchain investment fund is de- cided through community voting, with companies posting the concept for their startup or business on NEM community for- ums, which are then voted on by users.
Successful companies are then presented to the Foundation, which carries out due dili- gence before issuing the funding.
HANDLINGlivestock effluent is an issue faced by both pork and dairy producers. Traditionally, vertical column pumps have been used, but there’s a trend in the market to switch to Tsurumi cut- ter pumps to eliminate clogs.
Ashley Mezenberg manages a 400-head dairy herd south of Traralgon, Victoria.
The effluent collected from his herringbone feed pad is laden with solids material.
He recently swapped over to a Tsurumi sub- mersible cutter pump supplied by Aussie Pumps Gold Distributor Rodwells.
Tsurumi, the world leader in submersible pump development, has produced a range of cut- ter pumps called the C Series that are designed
to handle effluent ef- ficiently.
The cutter pumps in- corporate a large open- channel impeller with a cutter mechanism.
A sintered tungsten carbide-alloy tip is brazed on the impeller vane.
As the impeller ro- tates, the vane tip cuts against the serrated edge of the suction cover.
This slices waste mat- erial, thus allowing free passage through the pump without clogging.
Tsurumi cast iron cutter pumps are avail- able in single and three- phase and range from 50-100mm bore.
The largest pump in the range has an enor- mous capacity of 2750l/ pmandamaxheadof 26m.
A guide rail option is available to enable easy
service of the pump without the need to re- move pipework or drain the collection pit.
Like all Tsurumi sub- mersible pumps, the C Series include features that extend the life and enhance reliability of the pump.
Significant design de- tails make a big differ- ence.
These include an anti-wicking cable en- try and silicon carbide seals.
Ashley has reported the new cutter pump is working really well and he is happy with the pump selection and performance.
Further informa- tion on the complete range of Tsurumi cut- ter pumps is available on and from Aussie Pumps Gold Distributors such as Rodwells.
Jason Lee (NEM), Sam Webb (BlockGrain) and Cale Ditterich (BlockGrain).
The Tsurumi cutter pump handles the contaminated effluent from a herring- bone feed pad at a dairy farm near Traralgon.
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Page 12 – Australian Pork Newspaper, February 2018

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