A very unique story, and at one point sad, begins in the 1980s. Like many young men, this one had a burning desire to become an ag-pilot. Influenced by his father and brother, Ruy Alberto “Beto” Textor attended CAVAG (Course for Agricultural Aviation) at the legendary Ipanema Farm. After graduation, he made his first agricultural aerial applications in the small community of São Sepé, Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil. Here, he flew with his father, Jayme Ruy Textor and brother Mario Rodolfo Textor. Today, Mario is the owner of Sepal Aviação Agrícola and OMAER, an aircraft maintenance facility (see AAU November 2018).

As Beto’s piloting skills improved, he wanted to expand his horizons and relocate to a new place. It was then in 1995 that Beto moved to Rio Verde, Goiás. From that moment, Beto’s future became a reality, taking great strides. In 1996, he formed a partnership with his friend, Pedro “Bica” Daniel, who was also an agricultural pilot. They bought two C-188 AgTrucks to treat the region’s soybean crops. 

A  year later, the construction of a hangar began, along with the creation of the company, Aerotex Aviação Agrícola, now in business for 22 years offering aerial applications and aerial missions to combat forest fires.

It is said that the fruit that does not fall far from the tree. This is certainly true for Beto and his two sons, André and Tiago. André, the oldest, began his flight training at Aeroclube do Rio Grande do Sul (ARGS). And, not long afterwards completed CAVAG at Aero Agricola Santos Dumont in Cachoeira do Sul, RS. In 2006, André joined Aerotex as an agricultural pilot. 

Inspired by Beto, André maintained his passion for Agricultural Aviation and Aerial Acrobatics from an early age.

The youngest son, Tiago, began his flight training by joining the Academia da Força Aérea (Brazilian Air Force Academy) in Pirassununga, São Paulo to become a pilot there. But, not before his first flights were with his brother, André, in the family-built RV-6.

In 2009, Tiago Textor, left his military career to attend CAVAG at Aero Agrícola Santos Dumont. In 2010, André and Tiago decide to form a new company, Aerotek, in Quirinópolis, Goiás, a large sugarcane region in the east-central part of Brazil. The mission of the company was to supply sugar mills and suppliers of sugarcane with advanced technologies and services. 

During all this time flying ag, the family developed a passion for acrobatics. Beto participated in several championships. In 2015, André was a two-time Brazilian first place Champion of Acrobatics in the Advanced Category sanctioned by Comitê Brasileiro de Acrobacia e Competições Aéreas (CBA/Brazilian Committee of Acrobatics and Air Competitions).

That same year, 2010, the father and two sons formed a threesome aerial demonstration team known throughout Brazil at the Textor Air Show. They made aerobatic flights at air shows with their three distinctly different aerobatic aircraft; Beto aboard the Cozy, André Textor flying his modified Pitts S2B and Tiago in the RV-7.

For five years, the three participated in many, fantastic aerial demonstrations. They took their passion for aviation everywhere they went throughout Brazil, enchanting and pleasing the crowds with the smoke from their aircraft as they flew tight formations and aerobatic routines. 

 9279- Textor Air Show in tight formation; (top-bottom) Beto in his Cozy, Tiago inverted in the modified Pitts S2B and André in the Slick 540. 

In 2015, André Textor left the boundaries of earth due to a fatal accident at an air show in Salvador, Bahia. It is said that the good ones arrive early in the skies. André is there taking care of all the aviators who love the profession. 

Undoubtedly, the loss of André was a huge setback for both Beto and Tiago. However, Tiago continued with the brothers company Aerotek. And, so did Beto with Aerotex, each offering support to the other to pass through this time of grief. 

 Fachada hangar- (L-R) Beto Textor and Tiago Textor continue with the Textor aerobatic legacy and agricultural aviation companies Aerotex and Aerotek. 

The work of both companies continued. Today, Aerotek operates Cessna C-188s, a 510G Thrush and a AT-502 Air Tractor. Aerotex operates Cessna C-188s and an AT-502 Air Tractor. Aerotek treats primarily sugarcane, while Aerotex treats soybeans and corn. 

In 2018, Aerotex formed a charitable partnership project with local growers and producers to create the first private Air Brigade to fight forest fires. Half of the income from the project was presented to the Rio Verde Cancer Hospital. In October of 2019, Beto and partners made a symbolic presentation of check for R$ 45,000 (Approximately $12,000 USD – See December 2018) 

In 2019, Aerotek completed its solar energy project. Now, the company produces 100% of the electrical energy it consumes, contributing to the betterment of the environment through sustainable actions.

Also, in 2019, Aerotek completed a study that demonstrated the effectiveness of applying a growth regulator by air to sugarcane. The research provided evidence to sugarcane growers that a sugar content increases by as much as 20% could be achieved with these type of aerial applications. (See Sidebar)

The Textor story is a history of three decades of love and dedication to agricultural aviation and aerobatics. It is one of a bond that a father and his sons share. Even after the loss of André, the Textor name continues in his memory promoting agricultural aviation, social consciousness and the environment.  

Aerial applications improve sugar content

A Brazilian aerial application company, Aerotek Aviação Agrícola from Quirinópolis, Goias, participated in research using the aerial application of a ripener for sugarcane. The DuPont product, Curavial, resulted in a sugar content gain of around 20% in the test plot crop. The experiment was carried out by Fazenda Monte Azul in Gouvelândia on a sugarcane plantation growing the RB579 variety of sugarcane. This particular variety of sugarcane has been grown on the plantation since 2013. RB579 is already considered a high producer of sugar, responding well in lowland areas like in Goias.

The Total Recoverable Sugar (TRS) is the index that represents the quality of the sugarcane, indicating the capacity of the plant to be converted into sugar or alcohol. It is fundamental for the valuation of the product harvested from its yield as raw material.

In the Goiás research, the ripener applied by Aerotek was Curavial at a rate of 22 grams per hectare. The research had a check plot that did not receive an application. The result of the Curavial application was a TRS of 122.3 kg / ton in the applied air area compared to 102.2 kg / ton in the control area; a gain of 20.09 kg / ton.

The managing partner of Aerotek, Tiago Textor, highlighted the importance of the results, for the sugarcane plantation, for Aerotek and aviation. “We are proud to collaborate with such impressive results, which only reflect in practice the dedication and commitment employed in the daily work of this great work. Congratulations to friends and clients, as well as the research administrators Monte Azul, Sebastiao Guimarães Carvalho and João Guimarães de Carvalho.” It should be noted, ripeners for sugarcane can only be effectively applied by aircraft. Source: SINDAG.