The Limex method beats ToBRFV tomato virus

We have been aware of the existence of the ‘Tomato Brown Rugose Fruit Virus’ (ToBRFV) for several years. The virus has now spread across several continents and is also appearing ever more often in the Netherlands. For some time now, Limex has been intensively involved with nurseries that are concerned about ToBRFV. We are in close contact with nurseries all over the world, for example, locally with nurseries in the Netherlands and internationally from Israel to the United States.

Crates, trays and carts: a potential threat to cultivation

The virus can be spread in a variety of ways, e.g. via seed trays, plant carts, logistics crates, etc. In short, any flows coming in from outside the nursery are a potential risk for cultivation.               

Limex decided to set up its own research into the effects of washing processes on the possible removal of ToBRFV from seed trays and harvest crates. The research included several trials by an independent and professional laboratory. Limex attaches great importance to being able to provide its customers with thorough and expert advice.

The NVWA (the Dutch Food and Consumer Product Safety Authority) classified the Tomato Brown Rugose Fruit Virus as quarantine-worthy as of 4 October 2019. From that moment on, using the virus for our trials was no longer allowed. On the laboratory’s advice, we decided to choose an alternative virus: the Cucumber Fur Virus (CGMMV).

Limex research into virus removal from crates.

5 washing processes tested, virus removed 5x

Limex has more than thirty years of experience with crate cleaning. This experience led us to test five different and carefully chosen washing processes. These five washing processes varied in temperature, residence time in the washer and the cleaning agent/disinfectant. The spray pattern and washing pressure were identical in every situation because if too many parameters change, it becomes difficult to determine which parameter makes the difference.              
Ten harvest crates were contaminated by the laboratory technician for each test variant. We consciously chose to use crates that had been in circulation for several years because of the presence of minor damage and rough patches, to ensure a true reflection of a practical situation. After all, a brand-new crate with smooth, clear plastic is much easier to clean than a well-used crate.

Outcome of the tests: five different washing processes, five effective tests. The virus was removed in all cases.

Limex crate washer.

Provide Limex washer with correct parameters

Limex is very pleased with the results of this research. The knowledge we acquired enables us to provide nurseries with good advice. In many cases, an upgrade of existing Limex washers is sufficient for fighting the tomato virus. In other cases, an extension or replacement of the washer is required.

It goes without saying that we are ready to assist nurseries wanting to know more about the various tests and their outcomes. However, no matter what brand or age your washer is, it must always be properly maintained and cleaned. Make sure to keep filters and nozzles clean, because only then can the machine unleash its full cleaning effect to the product.

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This is what satisfied customers say about us

Fully automatic washing line for Royal De Ree Holland

“What we now have is a system that washes the transport crates far better than the previous installation, and the number of operators has been reduced from three to just one.”- Joost van den Berg

Limex crate and tray washer at Jungpflanzen Gernert

“The trays are thoroughly cleaned and disinfected with foam from Menno Florades. The washing result could be seen very quickly from the better root quality.” – Achim Gernert

Intensive and sustainable crate washer for Wijnen Square Crops

“With this washer, we can be sure that the crates that come out of the machine are clean and free from viruses and other diseases; we can use them in our processes without risk.” – Koen Saris

Meet our sustainable partner: PlantLab

“We are excited about the washing result of the Limex machine. We like to share our plans and working method with a company like Limex that is also committed to sustainability and we are looking forward to a beautiful and successful collaboration in the future!” – Mr. Hans van Scheijndel

Limex develops process for hygienic cleaning of propagation trays

“Limex is developing constantly to meet our increasingly stringent requirements. We can recommend Limex with a clear conscience.” – Oliver Schneider

5 Tray washers in 4 years at Svenska Skogsplantor

“Our collaboration with Limex has worked very well. A supplier that we will continue to work with and can recommend as a good partner.“ – Niclas Noord

Limex crate washers at Wesselman Flowers

“During cultivation, we see cycle after cycle of tulips emerging uniformly. An extra benefit is that the machine can remove the TVX virus. I can certainly recommend a Limex washer to every tulip grower.” – Joost Wesselman

Hishtil and Limex announce intensive collaboration

“The fruits of this productive collaboration between Limex and Hishtil permit both companies to offer their customers the best sanitation solution and healthy propagating material that will allow them to maximize crop quality and yields.” – Amit Dagan

Silver – our tray washer partner in Chile

“It is a pleasure for us to work with Limex, which is aware of the problems of hygiene and water scarcity that concern us in Chile and some regions.” – Martin Campos

Limex crate washer at Boer Erik

“I have seen Limex machines at other fruit growers, even one that has been in use for 25 years and is still running. When I invest, I think it is important to invest in high-quality and well-functioning products that I will be able to use for years to come.” – Boer Erik

Industrial tray and trolley washing machines for Ontario Plants Propagation, Canada

“I’m really proud that we get such large, intensive trolley and tray washers.” – Pieter van Dijk

Limex Bucket Washer at Veiling Holambra Brazil

“The delivery of the bucket washer from Limex has fully met all our expectations! Limex has now a satisfied customer in Brazil!” – André van Kruijssen

LCS/Royal FloraHolland Bucket Washers

“The Limex washers are an indispensable component for a successful service to LCS!” – Jan van Hoef

Sustainable box cleaner Scherpenhuizen

For distribution centre Scherpenhuizen, Limex supplied a boxwasher, type KKW6000NS for sustainable washing of boxes where the water is heated by high-quality residual heat from cooling.

Limex tray washer at Bergvik Skog Plantor

“To have a tray washer that works this great has really boosted our production at the nursery. The growing trays gets clean and we can use them over and over again in our production without any problems. I can highly recommend any forest plant producer to use a Limex Washer in their production line.” – Ronny Anngren

Limex crate washer at Banken Champignons

“The Limex crate washer meets our hygiene requirements (microbiological cleanliness) and produces a drying result of less than four grams per crate. This allows an output of 5,600 clean crates per hour, and that maintains our delivery capacity at an optimal level. ” – Jurgen Banken