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    PRIME INDUSTRY: From left, Jim Reynen, Brendan O’Loughlin, Jodie Eagle, Glen Hobbs, Peter Hobbs and Lee Meadows discuss ACE Radio’s AgLife Digital project at Wimmera Mallee Ag. Picture: PAUL CARRACHER

AgLife: Harvest boosts buyer confidence


Wimmera agriculture businesses expect a major multimedia event in early March coupled with a favourable grain-harvest season will compound buyer confidence and stimulate the region’s economy.  

Businesses will join ACE Radio Broadcasters for a week-long event designed to fill a trading void left by the cancellation of this year’s Wimmera Machinery Field Days due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The event, AgLife Digital, will combine the network’s radio stations 3WM and MIXX FM, The Weekly Advertiser and online media platforms.

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Farm-industry businesses such as Horsham-based Wimmera Mallee Ag and Traction Ag will run a series of ‘come-and-try’ days and promote products and services from March 1-5. The promotion will run at the same time the field days would normally run. 

Wimmera Mallee Ag business manager Jodie Eagle said a positive Wimmera 2020-21 winter-crop harvest season created increased buyer confidence from producers and farmers. 

“The harvest from last year has already really boosted sales. It’s a good sign things are going well,” she said. 

“All the farmers we’ve spoken to are pretty happy with the outcome from harvest.” 

Ms Eagle said she expected the AgLife Digital promotion would contribute to a more ‘personalised’ experience, where customers could trial machinery. 

“It will be a good opportunity to promote our products more one-on-one with our customer base. It’s something that needed to be done to fill the gap left by the field days,” she said. 

“We will be able to do more demonstrations with our customers, whereas at the field days you can’t demo mowers and start up augers.”

Ms Eagle said the business had already seen a ‘significant’ benefit from transitioning to an online format. 

“You’ve got to be integrating multimedia platforms in your business, because everyone is on the iPads or phones these days,” she said.  “We’ve noticed since we jumped on board with ACE Digital, our website brings in so many extra inquiries from as far as South Australia and NSW.” 

Service and sales specialist Glen Hobbs said since harvest had finished in late 2020, machinery inquiries and demand for services from farmers had ‘dramatically’ increased. 

“When there’s a good harvest, there’s more confidence in everything and at the minute we’re absolutely flat out,” he said. 

“We are seeing a flow-on effect from the harvest period.” 

Stawell Road business Traction Ag, which will also take part in the event, plans to run a series of ‘come-and-try’ days during the week. 

AG Co Australia national sales manager Steven Nankivell, who works with the business, said the AgLife Digital event would give the business an opportunity to promote its services and machinery face-to-face.

“It’s just a matter of meeting real people,” he said.

“When I worked in England, it was very easy to sit in head office and deal with people on the phone.

“But to actually get out and deal with people face-to-face and know that we’re helping them by hopefully providing the best equipment and service in the industry – it just makes the whole thing rewarding, I just love it.”

Mr Nankivell encouraged Wimmera farmers and producers to attend the business’s event on March 3 and 4. 

“We can expect a couple of really great days from Traction Ag,” he said.

“Come in, see it, drive it and speak to the product experts.” 

The entire January 27, 2021 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire January 27, 2021 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!