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Tillage men splash €12m in combine sales surge

Tillage farmers are on track to spend more than €12m on combines this year, according to the latest figures from the Farm Tractor and Machinery Trade Association (FTMTA).

Displaying a remarkable confidence in the sector, tillage farmers are expected to buy more than 60 combines by the end of this year.

This comes on top of an extremely strong year for combine sales in 2011, when 40 units were sold.

FTMTA chief executive Gary Ryan said the combines being bought ranged in value from €130,000 to €300,000, with most sold in the range of €200,000-€230,000.

The majority are being sold to farmers and not contractors, as access to credit is easier for farmers.

"Last year's sales of more than 40 combines was the highest sales for over 10 years," he remarked. "But it looks like 2012 is going to blow that out of the water."

Mr Ryan added that tillage farmers were also buying new tractors, with most choosing machines in excess of 125hp and paying from €80,000-€100,000 for each machine.

"Last year, the dairy man was driving tractor sales, buying machines of 100-125hp but this year, looking at the size and location of the tractors being registered, it has to be the tillage people driving it," he said.

Meanwhile, tractor sales nationally rallied last month after taking a slight dip in April.

Some 217 tractors were sold last month, up almost 60pc on the same month last year.

FTMTA figures show that 1,283 tractors have been sold so far this year, which is 26pc ahead of the same period last year.


"There has been nearly as many tractors sold in the first five months of this year than was sold in all of 2010," said Mr Ryan.

"There is every sign that we will get to 1,750 machines sold by the end of the year."

The machinery sales industry sees 2,000 tractors as a benchmark sales figure needed to sustain the trade.

One quarter of the tractors sold so far this year have been under 100hp in size, with a price range of €50,000-€55,000, while 37pc of those sold have been in the 100-120hp size, costing around €60,000-€65,000.

A further 37pc of tractors have been over 120hp, costing €80,000-€100,000.

Indo Farming