Farm equipment manufacturers taking the annual trek from Scotland to the LAMMA show found business to be had among farmers in more buoyant mood.
Bale-handling machinery maker Peter Murray, of Tarves, in Aberdeenshire, said he was happy with inquiries from visitors who he felt were a little more upbeat than in the past couple of years.
Adam McDonald, of Vegcraft, found the same. “We were busy from 9am on the first day and had two previously discussed orders confirmed at the show,” he said. “We now have an order book full to around June.”
Vegcraft makes sprayer support equipment at Camyllie, Arbroath, including ProFill filling stations and bespoke bowsers, which streamline the filling process and lift sprayer capacity, particularly when a bowser saves returning to the yard to refill.
“With a pre-mix system, you can turn around a 4,000-litre sprayer in just four minutes, so if you need maximum capacity on the day, that’s the way to go,” said Mr McDonald.
Inquiries and orders for livestock handling equipment were welcomed by Bob Ritchie, who returned to the Forfar-based Ritchie Implements factory “feeling very bullish”.
He said: “I was a bit apprehensive because we exhibited outside rather than indoors to stretch our budget but the weather was kind to us and the outlook generally was quite good.
“I was pleasantly surprised by overseas inquiries, including a very positive contact from New Zealand just two hours before the end of the show for products we don’t yet sell there.
“If he’d turned another direction, he’d have missed us, so that was a good break.”
Potato equipment specialist ScanStone, also in Forfar, and Lincolnshire-based engineering partner and dealer Scotts Precision Manufacturing also moved outdoors to occupy a bigger stand exhibiting more products.
ScanStone’s new Patriot trailed potato harvester made its UK debut, aimed at smaller growers otherwise using used harvesters or as a second machine for big growers running self-propelled machines.
The two-row Patriot lifts four rows of tatties when working behind the company’s two-row windrower, which has a new longer cross conveyor option to reach over a bed so that eight rows can be opened up creating more space for harvester trailers.
Growers lifting potatoes into boxes will welcome the hydraulic fold down walkway and steps available on the latest ‘BC’ flat-beds from Marshall Trailers, at Bucksburn, near Aberdeen, as it provides safer and easier access for levelling filled boxes by hand. A new rear bale ladder option can be configured to suit round and square bales, and the rolled side rails incorporate new ratchet strap slots as well as rope hooks for securing loads.
Stewart Trailers showed examples of the Road King bulk carriers, livestock floats and heavy-duty low loaders made at the Daviot works near Inverurie.
The company highlighting a new heavy-duty Nokian tyre distributed by Lockerbie-based Nordic Tyres, said to feature tread 5-29% deeper than alternatives while three steel reinforcing belts rather than two adds durability.