Great Plains News by Region

International News

The following are news articles of interest to our International customers, listed in chronological order, starting with the most recent. Enjoy!

The DTX offers multiple adjustments and part options

Owners of Great Plains’ Simba cultivators are better placed than owners of other brands this spring because they own machines which are more adjustable than their competitors, says Adrian Hartley, Chief Design Engineer.

But before they get any machine out of the shed for spring field work he suggests they use a spade to examine the soil and determine just how much cultivation they should do.

His message is especially relevant for those farmers who had to abandon cultivations last autumn and may be working in the spring for the first time in a number of years:

David Holmes

Successfully running a cultivator drill in damp conditions needs care, but can be done successfully if the drill and tractor pulling it are prepared and managed correctly, says David Holmes, UK Sales Director for Great Plains (pictured left).

For those thinking of using the drill this spring, he suggests they avoid over-working the soil and draw as much benefit as possible from the winter’s weathering:

Simon Revell

The world’s farmers face a huge challenge to achieve ever higher crop yields to ensure they can keep feeding the world’s fast growing population.

Speaking to a group of Hungarian visitors to Great Plains’ Sleaford factory, Simon Revell, European Sales Director, said that rising population was just one concern:

“A growing population needs somewhere to live, and we are losing land to house and road building at an alarming rate. That means we are going to have to produce far more from the land that is left”.

There was huge scope for improvement, he added:

Small plant; big root – Andrew Ward oilseeds should still thrive!

All farmers should know their own production costs and not rely on the averages often quoted in the industry, a group of Hungarian journalists visiting Great Plains’ Sleaford factory heard.

Andrew Ward, who farms at Leadenham, a few miles West of Sleaford, explained how he calculates the full costs of every farm operation so he knows how much each crop costs to produce.

In particular he highlighted the savings – both in terms of time taken and financial cost – that he has achieved by moving from a fully plough-based system to non-inversion tillage.

Attila Jocsak translates a briefing for the Hungarian visitors

The non-inversion and one-pass crop establishment systems now widely used across the UK attracted significant interest from a group of 16 leading Hungarian farmers when they visited Great Plains’ Sleaford factory and farms using such systems.

Around 80% of arable land in the country is still ploughed, says Attila Jocsak, Great Plains specialist for importer Valkon, but things are changing:

“Some of these farmers already have Great Plains machines. They range from those with 220ha – 250ha to one who manages 15,000 ha for a big company.

Stephen Aldis briefs the Hungarians on the Twin-Row planter

Great Plains’ Twin-Row maize planter is being trialled right across Europe this year, and will be promoted alongside the company’s “vertical tillage” systems.

The two fit together logically, Simon Revell, European Exports Director told a group of Hungarian farmers visiting the company’s Sleaford factory, an combining them correctly could reap significant rewards:

“Maize is very sensitive to poor soil structure, which quickly reduces emergence levels and yield. Yet if the soil structure is correct it will establish roots up to 1.2m deep.

Stephen Lewis

Two new X-Presses are on their way to farms in Northern Ireland via Genesis Distribution Ltd, based at Upper Ballinderry, West of Belfast, which is enjoying a good start to its first full year as a Great Plains dealer.

The two machines have gone to contrasting customers, says Stephen Lewis, pictured here:

Great Plains International is fully embracing the social networking scene. Why not pay a visit to our new, improved Facebook page and keep up to date with what’s happening at Great Plains worldwide. We’ll be sharing our latest news and photographs with you on a regular basis, so please do take a few minutes to stop by to see what we’re up to – and of course, we’d welcome any feedback and contributions. We hope you Like what you see!

Jim Thygesen

Fitting the DTX with auto-reset on the deep working tines has opened up a significant market in Denmark, says Jim Thygesen, Territory Manager, because some 90% of the country’s soils are stony:

“Any machine that only has shear-bolt protection of deep working tines simply would not work in those areas”.

The latest opportunity for the country’s farmers to see the machine came at a two day show held by dealer J Hundhal, which is based at Thisted in the far North of the country:

George Clark Retires

Staff on Great Plains’ Sleaford Assembly Shop Have bid a fond farewell to George Clark, who has been a valuable part of the factory’s team for the past decade.

George retired on reaching his 65th birthday, having joined the old Simba company in November 2002.

Prior to that he was a self-employed motor mechanic and ran his own garage. On retirement, he was presented with a special wristwatch and a hamper.

DTX Auto-Reset

Fitting the DTX cultivator with auto-reset tines is opening up new markets for the machine in a range of regions, and the machine is proving its worth again this spring.

Dairy farmer Richard Pearman, who runs a 240 cow dairy herd at Bellbroughton, near Stourbridge, West Midlands, has already run his machine this spring as he prepares to sow the 130 acres of forage maize he grows for his cattle.

The Doe Show

British farmers seem determined to put 2012 behind them and concentrate on the future, judging by their attitude at the Doe Show, where plans - and purchases - for 2013 were the main topics of conversation.

Graham Parker, Dealer Principal, says show sales were among the highest ever: “They were 42% up on the 2012 show by the Friday evening, and I wasn’t unhappy about the 2012 event!

“People appeared to come out in a business-like mood and be prepared to invest if they felt it was justified.

Pierre-Arnaud Noiret

Great Plains is strengthening its market presence in two key arable farming areas of Northern France with the appointment of new dealers.

Scop Bouchard is based in the Calvados region of Normandy, while Sebmat operates in the Marne department, to the East of Paris.

“These two dealers are valuable additions to our network and cover two important regions”, says Pierre-Arnaud Noiret, Territory Manager for France:

“Both companies bring with them experience from working with Bonnel, who were previously our importers for the country.

Mounted X-Press with ST Bar

The improving spring weather is helping raise farmers’ spirits in the Midlands, where there was a strong turnout for Rea Valley Tractors’ Open Day at their Draycott-in-the-Clay, Derbyshire.

The better weather is turning farmers’ minds towards spring field-work, says James Kissock, Territory Manager:

“Many of them resorted to ploughing last autumn, but are now starting to think about reduced tillage again.

Getting down to detail at SIMA

Great Plains enjoyed a busy week at the SIMA Show in Paris, where it was exhibiting in its own right for the first time.

The company switched from working through an importer to employing its own staff in France last year, a decision that Simon Revell, European Exports Director, says is paying dividends:

“The show will help us build a strong presence in France. We received lots of interest from potential new dealers and will make new appointments to strengthen our network.

The Flatliner is proving its ability in Ukraine

Key messages about soil structure and the savings available from one-pass oilseed rape establishment were the key topics tackled during two well-attended seminars held by Great Plains in the Ukraine.

The first event was held near Lviv, in the far West of the country near the Polish border, while the second was held near Donets’k in the East.

Both sessions prompted healthy debate, reports Simon Revell, European Exports Director:

Top Dealers Rewarded

Leading Great Plains dealers from across the Czech Republic and Slovakia received a detailed briefing on the company’s plans for the future when they attended a conference organised by importer Agri CS.

The ideas they heard provoked a lot of discussion, says Vasek Madl, from  Agri CS:

“The theme we used was ‘The Different Way’, which highlights how we want to approach the market in a fresh way. We invited 65 staff from our best dealers across the two countries and explained to them how we want to work with them to help establish the Great Plains brand.

Roy Applequist visits with show attendees

With nearly 870 exhibitors and 307,000 attendees on hand for the 2013 National Farm Machinery Show, Great Plains showed its metal (or iron) as traffic on our lot was feverish throughout the four-day exhibition in Louisville, Kentucky. Interest at the Great Plains lot was high for our industry-leading vertical tillage tool Turbo-Max® and, according to Great Plains Vice President of Sales, Tom Evans, another hot topic of discussion was our nutrient application tool, Nutri-Pro®.

New DTX Auto-Reset

Great Plains will be putting on a show of strength at this year's SIMA event being held in Paris between 24th and 28th February. A large, new-look Stand will provide the perfect showcase for exhibiting a wide range of products spanning the extensive Great Plains tillage, seeding and planting equipment portfolio.

With effect from June 1st 2013, machines produced at Great Plains' Sleaford factory will no longer be painted in Simba gold but will instead all be finished in the green livery of parent company, Great Plains Mfg Inc. Machines produced at Sleaford for export have been supplied in green since Agritechnica in November 2011. From June this year, the changeover to green will extend to the UK market, ensuring worldwide consistency in product branding.

Danielle Keeps Moving

Danielle Pole spends her working life getting Great Plains machinery moving (to  export markets), and will spend much of the rest of her life in 2013 moving in aid of a range of charities.

She raised over £1,400 during 2012 in aid of Macmillan Cancer Support, Pancreatic Cancer Action, Walk the Walk and Cancer Research UK and has already completed the first event of a crowded programme for 2013.

During the year she plans to complete 13 events – either long-distance runs or walks – in aid of Pancreatic Cancer Action and Macmillan Cancer Support.

Great Plains' new style stand drew the crowds

Great Plains new style showstand, which mixed technical exhibits highlighting the company’s research work with machines, proved a hit with stand visitors at LAMMA and attracted a significant new audience, reports UK Sales Director David Holmes:

“The technical displays concentrated on two of the hottest topics of the moment among arable farmers – those of reliable, low-cost oilseed rape establishment and soil restructuring”.

The machines also made their mark – with many stand visitors complementing how smart the new green livery and new logos looked:

DTX with Auto-Reset

Farmers visiting Ripon Farm Services spring show at Great Yorkshire Showground were in confident mood, reports the company’s Steve Platts, and the fact that the event was held in sunshine and under blue skies helped:

“The show normally gets our year off to a bright start and we were lucky with the weather and had plenty of visitors.

“Generally farmers are in a positive mood. They realise 2012 was a horrible year in many ways, but are determined to do their best to make 2013 better.

Research Reaches Top Audience

Great Plains’ research work on oilseed rape establishment was presented to two notable audiences in the Czech Republic by Simon Revell, Western European Exports Director, at two seminars.

The first was at the University of Life Sciences’ Agricultural School in Prague, where he addressed an audience including scientists, students and members of the Czech Republic’s Oilseed Rape Growers Association.

Rollers' Euro Debut at SIMA

The new range of rollers for fitting behind Great Plains’ Simba mounted cultivators will be featured on the company’s stand at SIMA, being held in Paris from February 24th to 28th February (Hall 5a/Stand G002).

The show will also mark the show debut in the country of the DTX with auto-reset of the deeper working tines, as well as the new smaller SLD models and Great Plains’ YP825A maize planter.

Both developments are expected to open up fresh markets for the company’s products, say Simon Revell, Exports Director for Western Europe: