Farm machinery and legislation is ever-evolving, and focussing on efficiencies is even more crucial than ever given the withdrawal of Basic Payments and need for profitability.
Fortunately, visitors to the Midlands Machinery Show on 9-10 November will be given an insight into the latest equipment and advice to help their businesses to adapt and thrive. “Featuring 100s of exhibitors including national manufacturers, distributors and regional dealers, live demonstrations and a packed seminar programme, there will be something for everyone, from the smallest producer to the largest arable contractor,” says show manager Elizabeth Halsall.
New this year will be a green power demonstration, featuring the latest electric tractors and telehandlers from the likes of Kramer and Manitou, as well as large machinery and groundcare demonstrations.
Changes to red diesel regulations, new machinery grants and how to work successfully with your contractor are just some of the topics being covered in a seminar with the National Association of Agricultural Contractors.
Such discussions are particularly relevant as over 90% of farmers use contractors, says the association’s Jill Hewitt. “With the decline of subsidies, I think more farmers are going to be looking to contractors rather than investing in machinery themselves.”
Other topics featuring in the seminar programme include how to optimise machinery sharing with the Lincolnshire Machinery Ring, succession planning with Wilkin Chapman solicitors and rainwater harvesting with JRH Water Management.
There will also be a focus on the environment, with a range of technical topics from carbon audits to steps towards net zero. “Net zero represents a fantastic opportunity for agriculture, with farmers and growers brilliantly placed to both contribute to and benefit from the transition,” says Bruno Gardner, managing director of NFU Enzero.
However, climate change does bring challenges – and increasingly uncertain weather patterns have directed arable farmers’ attention to optimising grain quality post-harvest to maximise returns.
There is lots of new technology on the market to improve efficiencies, speed throughput and protect grain, which will be on display at the show. “The benefits of correctly and efficiently handling and storing grain post-harvest cannot be ignored any longer,” says Richard Flach, co-owner of grain drying specialist Flach and le-Roy.
But keeping equipment running during busy times of year is always a concern – so supporting the next generation of agricultural engineers is vital. The Midlands Agricultural Engineering Apprenticeship Award is back for its fifth year – championing upcoming talent in the sector.
“The award aims to raise the profile of the sector and support young people from diverse backgrounds and skill-sets to develop the abilities they need to embark on successful agricultural careers,” says Simon Eccleston, CEO of the Newark & Nottinghamshire Agricultural Society.
Those who are interested in tractors and how they are put together have a particularly special treat this year: An exclusive insight into the entire production line at John Deere’s renowned Mannheim factory in Germany, thanks to a live streamed tour of the facility on both days of the show.
“Building a modern tractor is extremely complex,” explains Chris Wiltshire, marketing manager at John Deere UK & Ireland. “Visitors will be able to see how we build and test our tractors, with commentary and close-up views which you wouldn’t even get at an in-person visit.”
- Tickets for the Midlands Machinery Show are now available. Entry is free but advanced registration is essential. For more information or to book tickets visit midlandsmachineryshow.com.