With the sounds of Christmas carols firmly into the distance and over-eating and self-indulgence a thing of the past, the excess of mince-pies has long since been used up on over-enthusiastic sales reps, keen to get a sales figures into what is essentially a very short month for many businesses, as most farms are generally off until the second week of January.
With the determined promises of “must get fit this year” impregnated into our minds, the burning question, “will I manage to fit into that Lycra mankini” to wear at the gym and “hit the reps hard? “!
Moving on to more sensible and current affairs; the cows at home are now well into their calving season, with a bit of a break between switch over from different bulls, the acanites and snow-drops are out in force so it must be Spring Time!
Usually the spring always bring forth new waves of enthusiasm and a much better up- beat demeanor amongst people, but sadly this year I am yet to see it!
So, the great mystery surrounding Brexit has been solved, we WILL leave the EU in 2020, which date remains to be seen as we constantly seem to be sent correspondence stating when and what is going to happen but never seems to.
It does make me wonder if the government has chosen to look at possibly the reason for climate change may in fact not be the fault of all the gaseous exchanges that our bovine friends create; but possibly it may be the cause of climatic impact on the environment due to wasted paper?!
With the continued onslaught of the absolutely atrocious weather to say the least; many of our customer’s are having to face some very difficult business decisions of what crops to grow and in some cases even now how to harvest them (or what is left of them).
We went to Lamma like many others did to have a good look as to what was on offer, had some very good meetings and as a result all I will say is watch this space… But even now although it is ideally located and situated in a weather free environment, warm buildings, and people not having to play a guessing game as to who they are talking to because they resemble an eskimo to beat the cold; there is still some reluctance in our industry for the bigger manufacturers to attend there.
JCB had spent a huge outlay on their stand and had a very impressive line-up including Fastrac 2 a high record-breaking tractor, although with their tyre choice, I can’t see how they would be able to as they claimed to go ploughing with it….
Agco was also there in force with Fendt and Valtra sharing a stand together and was very busy on both days, and where was WM Agri people asked? Well if you want the honest truth we do more good at shows just physically being there without stands and the huge outlay of the costs involved networking and meeting people who are there and not have the worry or logistical nightmare of making all the people happy who are so stringent on Health & Safety and you must do this or do that. We feel as a company we are well enough known by now that we shouldn’t have to attend lots of shows; and besides the cost of attending them is prohibitive, not least to say alarmingly high!
There are no doubt some tough times ahead for many businesses to face and not to say in the least some very uncomfortable decisions and conversations to be had around the kitchen table in the coming months.
With that in mind I attended a First Aid Course For Mental Health in January organised by Breckland Council and YANA.
It was a very tough and at times very emotional course designed to make you learn about a whole different range of subjects from suicide to eating disorders and how to try to help members of staff deal with many different conditions and illnesses.
We had 17 of us from all walks of life; we had a vet, two local policeman whom specialise on rural policing; farm secretaries, a local councillor, grain merchants etc, and utilities providers.
It goes without saying we all unanimously agreed that it was a very much a worthwhile course to go on and I would urge anyone who has the chance to attend one to sign up to do it.
It goes without saying “a problem shared is a problem halved.”
It is also time to start thinking about flat-rolls and chain harrowing for the grassland and meadows; we have a good range of different machines to offer from Walter Watson, Twose and Ritchie, and also calf creep feeders also from Walter Watson and Bateman.
The nights are drawing out, and the ground should hopefully be dry enough soon so that we can get on and start spring barley drilling, otherwise I don’t think there is a manufacturer who makes hovercraft drills, so inevitably it will surely be “cuckoo barley”!
We have finally taken off with a franchise which we have been pushing hard for a couple of years; the first AW Trailer has arrived in the WM Agri yard; and I am absolutely delighted to say I am extremely impressed from what I have seen so far! It is without doubt pretty much bang equal if not better than some of the other more well-known marques regularly seen around the Norfolk lanes, and I have to say the dealer support we get from Andrew Watkins and his team is second to none, nothing is ever too much trouble unlike with some of the previous manufacturer’s we have dealt with in the past
So, we look forward to warmer dry days, brighter sunshine and the affirmation that under the guidance of dear Boris we are in safe hands, and can only look forward to a more prosperous and hopefully fortuitous 2020.