Salford, Ont. — Salford Group, a global leader in the manufacturing of tillage, seeding and fertilizer application equipment, is bringing a whole new level of choice to the fertilizer application market through its acquisition of Valmar Airflo, Inc., a leading manufacturer of seeding and granular application equipment for the agricultural industry.
“We are thrilled to add Valmar Airflo to our family,” stated Geof Gray, chief executive officer of Salford Group. “This merger will allow us to offer a complete line of competitively priced seeding and granular application equipment to the grower and service provider.”
Gray also noted that he looked forward to seeing the combined strength and resulting synergies of the design teams at Valmar Airflo, BBI Spreaders and the Salford Air Cart division, as farmers would benefit from greater choice and fresh innovation.
The Valmar Airflo acquisition adds significant benefits and expertise to Salford Group, with an expanded product line that now includes: primary, secondary and vertical tillage, air seeders, commodity carts, cover crop seeders, spinner-type fertilizer spreaders, air-boom applicators and granular applicators for fertilizer, insecticide, seed, seed inoculant and forage preservatives.
Valmar has a long history of combining its patented Airflo metering technology with other OEM tillage, seeding, planting and application equipment to enhance their productivity and versatility. Valmar Airflo was founded in 1976 by Charles “Charlie” Balmer, a Swiss immigrant who moved to Manitoba in 1953. Balmer started out as a mechanic, eventually recognized from both the Manitoba and Canada Halls of Fame for his innovative designs and commitment to improving technology for growers. He continued to work and innovate well into his later years before succumbing to cancer in 2006.
Indiana farmer Dan DeSutter was the first field operator to use Salford and Valmar equipment together, when he paired a Salford I-1100 and a Valmar 2455 to apply his annual rye grass seeding back in 2007.
Since that time, interest in cover crop seeding among the farming community has expanded rapidly, and in response, Salford and Valmar have been steadily increasing their level of cooperation in order to offer farmers a flexible, effective cover crop application tool. That cooperation was recognized by industry analysts in fall 2014 for multiple benefits to the farmers, as they noted that the combination of Salford and Valmar equipment saved producers time and fuel while improving soil health.
“This next step in our cooperation with Salford Group is very exciting for us,” said Mercedes Caron, Valmar president. “Salford Group has the capital, additional core expertise and access to markets that will bring Valmar’s existing product lines to more farms in North America and a greater global market.”
Caron also stated that more accurate fertilizer application, nutrient management and cover crop seeding are becoming mandatory in some regions and considered best practices in most other areas: “Whether these practices are mandated or not, more accurate fertilizer application is saving farmers money and cover crops are improving soil quality by building soil organic matter, adding nutrients to the soil and reducing erosion and runoff. We’re proud to be helping farmers save money and be better stewards of the land.”
?“Furthermore, I’m sure that our founder, Charlie Balmer, would be proud that his life's work will continue to grow and serve Canadian farmers, and I am certain he would be honoured that the Salford Group was acquiring this company and taking it to the next level,” said Caron.
As a new unit of the Salford Group, Valmar will continue to produce equipment from its Elie, Man., manufacturing facility. Salford Group is planning fresh investment that will help expand production capacity and marketing power to make Valmar products more widely available to North American farmers. The Valmar facility will also become a parts distribution center for the complete Salford Group product line, providing better support for growers. The Manitoba facility will be the fifth manufacturing location for the Salford Group, adding to existing operations in Salford, Ont., Osceola, Iowa, Cornelia, Ga., and Omsk, Russia.
About Salford Group
Founded in 1978, Salford Group is one of North America’s leading manufacturers of primary tillage, secondary tillage, seeding and fertilizer application equipment. Salford Group engineers its products to excel in the different soil and crop types throughout the agricultural world and to add value to any size farming operation. The organization manufactures in the U.S., Canada and Russia.
Salford Group is aggressively expanding and looking for qualified candidates in many of its departments and at several of its facilities, including sales and marketing positions, production personnel and production management.
About Valmar Airflo
Valmar Airflo designs and manufactures granular applicators and seeders used by farm producers, commercial operators and agricultural research specialists. Founded in 1977, Valmar Airflo provides innovative equipment to the agricultural industry.