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Is it Brexit or Covid to blame?
Availability of new machinery and also spare parts has become a major issue for the industry, which is probably a result of both Brexit and Covid. New machinery has seen price increases of anywhere between 5% and 25% compared to pre-Covid price levels with a popular sized 160hp tractor now costing £100,000 and that’s after discount! The same tractor in 2019 was £81,000 and for a 14T grain trailer on the back then that has gone up from £15,250 to £21,500.
Price is not the only issue to deal with as actually getting hold of a new machine is the other problem, with long waiting lists and delivery delays very common. It is probably too late to order a new JCB for Christmas and a new fertiliser spreader might arrive in time for use next spring. Availability of raw materials and component parts is the issue and the delay may just be down to a glass window or foam seat filling.
Potentially the biggest concern for all will be getting hold of spare parts this harvest, as now matter what the colour is there will be frustrated and angry farmers sat with broken down combines waiting for delivery of the parts needed.
It is then hardly surprising that the second hand machinery market remains so strong with the good quality, genuine lots on offer making substantial premiums. A prime example of this comes with our most recent online auction on behalf of Andrew Thornton at East Lutton, following a change in his farming policy. The very smart Valtra T174 (2018) and T234 (2017) both selling for a 15-20% premium at £61,500 each. The matched pair of Easterby bale trailers (2017) making £11,000 each which was £2,300 more than the cost when new. The McHale V660 baler (2014) then went on to finish at £20,000.
It is likely to be some time before the supply chain gets back to normal.
Richard Tasker MRICS FAAV
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