(The Center Square) – Farmers who need farm equipment can expect to pay top dollar and should be prepared to wait until 2023 for delivery. Jerry Beard, one of the four partners at The Beard Implement Company in Arenzville, said he could make a lot more sales, but he just can’t get the products.
âThey are planters. They are tools for working the soil. They’re combines. They’re tractors. I don’t think there is a favorite. They seem to go after everyone, âBeard said.
From the start of 2021, the wait times for farm equipment started to get longer and longer. Despite the pandemic, Beard said he didn’t see the shortages coming.
âHere we were all working. I was naive, thinking they were workingâ¦ making these products, but they just weren’t, âhe said.
Beard Implements is based on pre-sales. Customers order material and expect to wait 9 months for delivery. Beard is now telling customers that wait times have doubled.
âWe’re telling people 2023,â Beard said.
It takes a lot of planning to sell a product 9 to 12 months in advance, he said.
âWe’re a bit used to it, but now we’re out for two years instead of 9 months to a year,â Beard said. âIt was very frustrating at first, but we are dealing with it. It’s just everyone. This is the case IH. This is Kinze, this is Great Plains. It’s Kubota. This is New Holland. It’s Westfield Augers. Bush chippers. They are all struggling with the same problem: getting products. “
Not only are customers unable to get farm equipment, but when they do get deliveries, the prices have gone up.
âI see price increases, which is very, very unfortunate,â Beard said. âManufacturers say it’s a problem of supply and demand. And there are many. But I still think there are price hikes going on.
Beard has been in the farm equipment business for over 40 years. He tells his employees to “stay positive”. It could be a lot worse, he said.
In 2013, 2014 and 2015, a drop in commodity prices left Beard and other farm equipment dealers with plenty of used equipment and no one to sell it to.
âWe’ve all sat on iron for years and paid a lot of interest,â Beard said. âMy father and my grandfather said, ‘You can’t eat it. You have to sell it. He kept telling me, âYou can’t eat iron. I just don’t want to have a glut of used machines like this again.
Despite the frustrations, overall 2021 has been a good year for Beard Implements, Beard said. The company organizes a Christmas party and pays end-of-year bonuses.
âI just hope I can do the right thing for all of my young employees,â Beard said.