If you could go back a year ago today, knowing everything that would unfold in farming and the economy in 2020, what would you have done differently in your business?
“We would have ordered more lawn mowers and other consumer ‘garden tools’ (tillers, etc.), more skid loaders and more hay tools. We would have ordered fewer corn planters and tillage pieces.”
– Randy Benson, Minnesota Ag Group, Cannon Falls, Minn.
“If we could go back to a year ago, we would have stocked up on more of certain types of inventory. We are sold out of 120 horsepower and below tractors, sold out of several different pieces of hay equipment, and low on skid steer loaders. Those segments of the industry were strong a year ago but have just about doubled over the last 12 months. Most of our suppliers have a back log of equipment orders for the strong segments due to the COVID-19 outbreak. When doing our forecasts a year ago and placing our orders, we were not expecting any large increases in demand like we have seen or issues with availability.”
– Eric Walker, New Holland Richmond, Richmond, Ind.
“We would have ordered more equipment for the start of the year. We could not get enough Kubota equipment all year — it cost us sales.”
– Clinton Peters, Streator Farm Mart, Streator, Ill.
“The biggest change would be inventory level. My shelves are empty! People stayed home this year. They worked harder and longer on the property, farm, home, ranch, etc. In doing so, up went the demand for anything that has to do with working on and maintaining their land. We would have increased our stocking levels of hay machinery, tractors under 150 horsepower, hand held products, lawn mowers, UTVs and implements. It was a sellers’ market this year; I wish we had more to supply the increased demand.”
– Larry Krystowski, Krystowski Tractor Sales, Wellington, Ohio
“Knowing how the world and economy is now, I wish I would have loaded up on more equipment. People are spending money and we are struggling to get things in a timely fashion.”
– Brian Baxter, Farmers Equipment, Elida, Ohio
“Knowing how 2020 has turned out so far, if we could go back a year we would have increased our inventory on compact and utility tractors. At the start of our year (11/1/2019), we were expecting flat to slight increase in sales in these categories. When COVID-19 started, we worried sales could be hurt and we would see a decrease in sales. Both predictions turned out wrong. We have seen an almost 20% sales increase for this year so far and now are facing inventory shortages and factory delays in getting equipment.”
– Kenneth Oliver, United Ag & Turf, Temple, Texas
“I would have ordered approximately 40% more tractors and equipment in so my supply would have lasted into the winter months.”
– Curtis Smith, C. Smith and Son Farm Eq., Clyde, Texas