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    UNDERSTANDING: Emmetts Horsham sales representative James Gardner enjoyed time chatting with farmers at the Wimmera Machinery Field Days earlier this month.Pictures: PAUL CARRACHER

AgLife: Big-ticket machinery supply building

By Abby Walter

A site brimming with big ticket items at the Wimmera Machinery Field Days this year was evidence supply and demand of machinery is almost back to balance after years of delays.

Emmetts Horsham sales representative James Gardner said supply of machinery was definitely improving.

He said the Emmetts site at the field days did not have many new machines, but John Deere was due to release more to Australia.

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“In the next 12 months I expect we’ll see more machinery in yards at dealerships,” Mr Gardner said.

“Manufacturers are catching up now.”

Mr Gardner said the instant tax write-off scheme and low-interest rates pushed the increased demand in recent years.

“Now we have higher interest rates and no write-off, so farmers are holding onto their pennies a bit more,” he said.

“Things are still selling, most farmers still had a good year, but it’s not like it was.”

Mr Gardner said speaking to farmers he understood they had a reasonable year in the region, and while there were better yields in the northern areas, no one was upset by the season.

“There’s still money around. We had a real uptake in the past two years for new machinery and now we expect we’re in a slow spot for the next couple of years,” he said.

“Also, inputs are costing more at the moment and with land value what it is, which means a lot of interest, some people are putting money into land, which possibly offsets what they spend on machines.”

Goldacres’ marketing manager Stephen Richards said with machinery made in Australia, the supply of stock continued to get better.

“In the past three years we have been order takers more than anything and haven’t been selling as much because it’s been so busy,” he said.

“In 2020 it was dry, particularly in NSW, and then it started raining and it didn’t stop, so orders kept rolling in throughout COVID and it’s been some of the best years we’ve had.”

Mr Richards said the business had a slow start to the year, but was building momentum now.

“We built a lot of orders in the lead-up to Christmas to start the year fresh and it probably took about a month for it to fire up again, but we’re seeing a lot more orders now,” he said. “It’s shaping up to be quite a good year, but you never really know – we haven’t had rain for about a month, but it will rain again and weeds will grow.”

Mr Richards said the field days were a chance to showcase the big range of products Goldacres had to offer, particularly regarding spraying.

“We showed the new G4 series two, our latest edition with a new engine, new transmission, all the updates and green-on-green camera technology to detect weeds in crop,” he said.

TractionAg sales team member Steve Graetz said access to machinery had improved greatly in comparison to recent years.

“While there was greater demand, it has steadied because of the tax incentive and with interest rates moving,” he said.

Mr Graetz said a tremendous amount of equipment was upgraded and improved in the same period of time.

“It’s amazing how much can change in two to three years,” he said.

“On the field days site, we had new technology on show with our fully-autonomous Fendt with its cameras and emergency stop functions – you can set it and it goes.

“Anything we had on-site in terms of spreaders was already sold – everything has its season and people’s minds are on spreading and cropping at the moment.”

The entire March 27, 2024 edition of The Weekly Advertiser is available online. READ IT HERE!

The entire March 27, 2024 edition of AgLife is available online. READ IT HERE!