A successful harvest depends on a lot of things going right. The weather has to cooperate, help needs to show up, and every aspect from the header to the elevator has to work in concert. Within all of those moving parts are literal parts, such as belts, bolts and chains to tires and even machinery, that need to hold their own in order to get harvest moving in the right direction.
Unfortunately, there are many concerns that some of those necessary parts may not be available when there is a harvest breakdown.
“We are very concerned about it,” said Marion County farmer Jonathan Zucker on a recent episode of Ohio Farm Bureau’s radio show, Our Ohio Weekly. “There’s always something that breaks during this time of year that seems to be in short supply as it is, so the problems that we are seeing now with a shortage in parts will only compound the issue.”
The shortage in parts is due to a few major kinks in the supply chain, including a scarcity of materials to manufacture parts, as well as a lack of truck drivers and a need for more loading dock and warehouse workers across the transportation sector.
Farmers Equipment CEO Dave Snyder said his dealerships are getting calls from around the country and even Canada from farmers looking for certain parts they might have in stock.
“What we and our manufacturers tried to do as we saw this shortage coming was to be proactive and expand the breadth of what we have in our inventory heading into this harvest season,” said Snyder, whose locations in Elida, Lakeview, Lisbon, Upper Sandusky and Urbana specialize in Case IH and Kubota equipment. “We also have great relationships with other dealerships so we can always check and see what might be available elsewhere that we might not have in stock.”
Snyder encourages farmers to take a proactive approach as well and think about some of the items they will most likely need over the harvest season and get those orders in as soon as possible.
“I speak for our dealerships and I know others feel the same way when I say we really do want to help get our customers what they need,” Snyder said. “Try to be patient and know that we will use all of the tools at our disposal to try to get the parts when needed, as needed to keep everybody running this season.”