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Wildfires, drought, derecho create ‘perfect storm’ for pivot supply chain constraints

Farmers in some parts of the Corn Belt are worried about the supply and availability of pivot irrigation as summertime approaches.

South Central Nebraska farmer Tyler Ruf tells Brownfield he ordered new pivots to replace several that were damaged from wildfires. “We should be able to get the pivots in this month and up. Any further problems, though, repairs we’re looking at midsummer for a lot of repairs.  Tires are hard to find, gear boxes (and) motors.”

Delaine Soucie says the fire damaged his pivots, too. “I ordered a new one because it’s too far damaged and we got three or four, I don’t know when they’re going to get them fixed.  They need tires and gear boxes and electrical.”

Northeast Nebraska farmer Jim Miller tells Brownfield a derecho ruined numerous machines last week. “As dry as it’s been, we’re going need to pivots throughout the growing season. Hopefully, they can find new pivots to replace the ones that have been damaged.”

Brad Dunbar, regional sales manager for the Midwest with Lindsay Corporation, tells Brownfield demand has been building since December. “This is really kind of that perfect storm where the inventory has been challenged and the lead times have been longer.  We have the increased demand that we’ve seen not only in agriculture due to the drought that has started and increased commodity prices then you couple that with the storm event, there’s a lot of demand on the system.”

But, he says, the company has been able to quickly supply machines. “We have several machines that are going out here today and tomorrow to help producers get up and running from last week’s storms.”

Dunbar says Lindsay Corporation took steps several months ago to help alleviate some supply chain constraints. “We were in a very fortunate position due to the planning that’s gone on over the last 18 months to increase inventories and increase output to respond very quickly to these storm events to get our customers up and running again.”

He says a standard, 7-tower machine could arrive by the middle of June.

Brad Dunbar, regional sales manager for the Midwest with Lindsay Corporation:

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