FTMTA: €20m is splashed on new combines
Irish tillage farmers have splashed out more than €20m on new combine harvesters so far this year, despite substantially lower grain prices in 2013.
Some 75 new combines, costing between €150,000 and €475,000 each, have been registered in the first eight months of 2013.
At an average value of €275,000, the combines account for total sales of €20.6m.
New figures released by the Farm Tractor and Machinery Trade Association (FTMTA) show that 2013 combine sales are running close to the 2012 record of 78 combines.
FTMTA chief executive Gary Ryan described the combine figures as "remarkable."
The sales are almost double the five-year average prior to 2011, when around 40 machines were sold annually.
Mr Ryan maintained that the awful spring weather was a key driver behind the higher sales.
"A lot of the higher sales seem to have been driven by people looking at the terrible spring and fearing a repeat of last year's harvest, which all had to be done in one week basically," he said. "In the event of a repeat, they wanted bigger and faster machines to get through it."