Innovation to the fore as Lamma moves on Lamma 2018 was the shop window for the UK’s agricultural machinery industry with new products on almost every stand. David Williams reports. It’s a shame that the last Lamma show to be held outdoors will be remembered for closing a day early due to high winds causing site damage, rather than the very positive event reported by exhibitors at the end of the first day. There seemed to be high levels of optimism among farmers attending, despite uncertainties for the industry around Brexit and what the future holds for the industry. Confirmation that subsidy payments are assured until 2022 had certainly had an effect and it appeared to be business as usual as far as many farmers and contractors were concerned, with medium-term plans for the next 3–5 years influencing investment in new technology to improve farm efficiency. One major manufacturer commented that it feared low second day attendance because the first day had been so
busy, as it secured loose objects ahead of the windy night forecast, but its sales team could not have foreseen that any potential business the next day might bring would be lost, as the show didn’t re-open. Feelings regarding the move to an indoor NEC event next year are mixed across the industry, as many exhibitors fear rising prices over the coming years. Potential visitors should be encouraged by easier access, hard-surface parking and the guarantee of a warm, dry event but its success depends on most of the industry getting behind the initiative and time will tell whether this happens. However, the consequences of holding an outdoor show in January were fully apparent this year and will probably influence many who previously doubted the merit of moving indoors.
The Kubota stand was busy as potential customers spent time checking out the latest models in the most powerful M7002-series tractor line-up. Since the M7001 series was introduced offering up to 175hp and with a choice of Powershift or CVT transmission, the tractors have proved popular with mixed and arable farms offering reliability and low operating costs. The new M7002 models feature improvements including new cab interiors, better mirrors and improved gear ratio spacing which will boost productivity. “We are delighted with Kubota’s entry into higher horsepower tractors,” commented Northants, Beds and Bucks-based dealer Geo Browns agricultural manager Roger Freeman, pictured on the stand (right) with Daventry branch sales representative Brendan Sabin. “The M7 tractors are most popular now, closely followed by the slightly smaller MGX tractors and almost all our sales are users swapping from competitor brands, following on-farm demonstrations. We have had a good year, and are enjoying having Kubota grassland harvesting equipment to complement the tractors. When we have cultivation products too, the full line-up will really help us look after all our customers’ needs.” Also displayed was the new narrow M5 tractor. The M5 series was introduced last year and one 95hp narrow version is available. With a flat floor cab it has provoked immediate interest from potential users. Kubota general manager Rob Edwards said Kubota’s success looks set to continue as the growing range of equipment attracts both dealers and customers. “We will have cultivation equipment from September this year and expect to take sales from competitor rather than sister brands as has been the case so far with Kubota forage machinery. New dealer appointments have been very positive for the brand, ensuring customers throughout the country are well served and we believe as the range widens we will see further new and established dealers keen to work with us.”
Claas’ entry into the articulated wheeled loader market has been welcomed by potential users and on the company’s stand were two Torion models, seen for the first time in the UK. The line-up includes seven models across three sizes lifting from 3.45–12.40t. The first confirmed sale of a Torion was made at the show to a Lincolnshire farm.
John Deere displayed the latest version of its R4050i self-propelled sprayer, which recently entered production. An AirRinse system provides air flushing of the booms and pipework after spraying, ensuring almost all the chemical has been removed prior to flushing with clean water. Extra thorough cleaning is achieved by air introduced as the tank level approaches empty, allowing almost all the liquid to be applied to the crop through the nozzles. The technology means in-field final dilution rate is improved by more than 250 times compared with just using water. For the final rinse in the yard the system provides an improved dilution rate more than 700 times better than a standard system; improving safety, reducing risk of chemical carry-over and reducing potential environmental damage. “It’s foolproof and relies only on the operator selecting the appropriate tick-box on the control screen. It will be standard on all John Deere self-propelled sprayers,” explained product specialist Mark James.
Bullock Tillage had a busy first day, with strong demand for the Tine-Cut primary cultivator and BTC trailed disc harrow. “The Tinecut has leading tines, two rows of discs and a packer,” explained managing director Nigel Bullock. “It has been available for several years but always provokes considerable interest including orders taken on the stands. The BTC trailed 5m discs also generated interest and I am sure that if we hadn’t lost the second show day then we would have had potential customers return, having looked at other options, to place orders. We sold several smaller items off the stand, but this is the first year that our lorry hasn’t had to make detours on the More over page... way home to drop machinery off on farms.”
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Farmers Guide Magazine March 2018 Issue