Farming is never easy, especially when bankers are calling the shots.
“In our territory, securing capital for our customers is going to be a challenge,” says Tom Rosztoczy, Stotz Equipment president. “We have banks pressuring farmers to limit spending, questioning how money is spent, and trying to control farmer spending as much as they can to keep the farmers operating within the parameters the banks want to see.”
The dairy industry in particular has been hard hit by such requirements, says Rosztoczy.
“We have a large number of dairies that are restructuring their debt, which will be a big challenge for that industry to get through,” he says. “My fear is that 12 months from now we will have some dairies that aren't milking cows because they won't be able to work through the capital challenges.”
Dan Scheuers, co-owner of Waupun Equipment in Wisconsin, hasn't heard of any farmers in his territory who have been forced to restructure their debt, but he says that a lot of local banks are now loaning money to dairies to keep them afloat.
“They're all kind of holding their breath right now,” says Scheuers. “Everybody is borrowing against their equity and it gets kind of scary every once in a while, because if customers stop buying, who else do you sell to?
Customers in the southern territory farm year round: they will cut a hay crop 12 times. It's all irrigated farming. July and August are the slowest months as far as activity; most work takes place in the winter.
The dealership serves a lot of dairy farmers that grow corn and hay for dairy cows.
Snow equipment is sold in Utah and Idaho only; not in the rest of the territory.
Waupun Equipment (www.waupunequipment.com) is a two-store New Holland and Massey Ferguson dealership based in Waupun, Wis.
Its farm customers grow alfalfa, corn, soybeans, wheat along with some vegetable crops, many of which are irrigated.
The dealership serves a wide range of dairy farmers – from 60-cow dairies all the way up to 10,000-cow dairies.
Snow equipment is sold throughout the territory