Wednesday, February 02, 2011

Wait for farm machinery increases as commodity prices go up and farms get larger

As the size of farms and farm yields have increased, so has the demand and waiting time for farm machinery. "Five years ago, a new tractor could be delivered in a couple of months. This year, if you order today, we can get it delivered by September," Dan Seitsinger, a sales representative for Van Wall Equipment in Story City, told Dan Piller of the Des Moines Register. Other companies agree that increased demand, resulting from "the outgrowth of big jumps in corn, soybean and livestock prices since mid-2010, has generated more sales and longer wait times for deliveries," Piller reports. (Photo by Mary Chind, Des Moines Register, of the 56th Iowa Power Farming Show.)

The longer wait times have not helped growing farmer impatience, Piller writes. "Farmers are in more of a hurry these days," Seitsinger said. "They don't like to wait. I understand it. The money is bigger and they don't want to miss opportunities." Despite the soaring corn prices not everyone was buying at the 56th Iowa Power Farming Show in Des Moines this week. "People seem to walk around with their hands in their pockets," one show vendor told Piller. "Farmers are pretty careful. Not everybody got the $6 corn or the $14 soybeans, and they know those prices can go down again."

Much of the increased sales can be attributed to the sheer size of today's farms, Piller writes. "Farms are getting bigger, yields are higher and farmers need bigger equipment," said Rod McGlothlin of Titan Machinery. "That means bigger tractors, and they want to trade up." The Iowa show annually attracts 19,000 visitors to see displays from 640 companies, though manager Tom Junge reports a waiting list of exhibitors. (Read more)

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