Whites Farm is at the hub of a sizeable farming operation in and around the village of Helions Bumpstead, near Haverhill, South Cambridgeshire, England.
It is a mainly arable business extending in all to around 1000ha, comprising five main blocks that are 11 miles apart. For this part of the eastern counties, the rotation is a familiar one – winter wheat, winter barley, oilseed rape, spring barley and beans. There are no livestock.
The farm relies on a MF 9407 S telehandler for a range of tasks and is rarely idle. Farm foreman Brian Blackmore explains: “The telehandler’s main duties include loading grain, moving fertiliser and filling grain stores at harvest time. Other odd jobs around the farm include moving dirt and rubble and it has a work platform with cage.
“The machine is just one year old now and the only outgoings during that time have been one service and the diesel,” he adds.
“It’s very straightforward to use, with very good all-round visibility, and has plenty of power for the jobs we use it for. The service back-up is also very good – only on the odd occasion have we had to ask a question.
“The machine is very reliable – as was the one it replaced – also a Massey Ferguson – which we had for 10 years with no problems. In fact, we never had to call the dealer out once during that time, and it was only really the fact that the tyres were worn that the decision was taken to get a new one.
“However, the MF 9407 S is a lot quicker on the road – capable of 40km/h. Loading grain is faster and smoother and the boom extender is also quick and easy to use.”
In December 2014, the owner of Bejstrup, Mr. Per Kold Kristiansen, one of the largest contractor in Denmark, held an “Open House” to celebrate its 60th birthday. More than 3000 visitors attended the event.
Their large business is involved with contracting, construction, municipal areas as well as a signage shop. They operate from 3 locations in North Jutland.
The recent owner of 22 x MF tractors was really proud to show its new contingent of Massey Ferguson tractors. In fact, the new AGCO partner used to be a New Holland customer for many years, and Bejstrup has decided to replace its NH fleet. Their future challenge is to aim for more AGCO products at Bejstrup – tractors and balers.
This successful story is due to the strong relationships built by AGCO Denmark as well as the Key accounts team and the local dealer, Hjallerup Maskinforretning.
Per Kold Kristiansen said “We can only confirm again that we have felt welcome at AGCO in general, and dialogue and trade negotiations to date have been characterized by a positive spirit and a quick response to various questions from our side. It has obviously been one of our toughest decisions to switch from New Holland to Massey Ferguson but high praise to all of you, for having made this process very smooth. This is especially something the drivers have noticed; also after the deal has taken place, we (Bejstrup) are taken seriously. All in all, we have only positive things to say.”
The Bejstrup team is so proud of its new tractors that the drivers have their name on the door and they NEVER wear dirty boots in the cab.
MF: Why do we need a simplification of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP)?
MB: The CAP is one of the European Union’s most far-reaching, complicated and intricate policies. More importantly, it is one of the EU’s most ‘common’ policies, spanning different geographical areas, landscapes, soil types and farming traditions. Not only that, but it is a policy which provides different amounts of income support to every single eligible farmer in the Union. This, understandably, makes it a lengthy and complex policy which can sometimes cause administrative burden for Member States, businesses and individual farmers. Therefore, it is essential that CAP Simplification is explored extensively. Now that the new CAP has been in place since the beginning of the year, the EU institutions want to look through what has been agreed and where improvements can be made, as well as what can be done better next time.
MF: What is the background to CAP simplification?
MB: The European Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Phil Hogan, has identified CAP Simplification as one of his priorities for 2015. This is also in the context of the new Commission’s Work Programme, headed up by Commission President Juncker, which highlights ‘Better Regulation’ as a core objective for EU policy. A first action plan on CAP Simplification was published in 2006, and since then there has been an ongoing CAP Simplification exercise. At the outset, the exercise will focus mostly on delegated and implementing acts, which help to put in place the detailed rules needed to implement the reformed CAP. Commissioner Hogan has already said that he will review the rules on environmental focus areas among more than 200 other Commission regulations that will be considered for simplification.
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Congratulations to the Land of the Little Grey Fergie at Norway’s Kongeparken which scooped a top prize at the Thea Awards in Los Angeles, considered by many to be the Oscars of the Themed Entertainment Industry.
This fantastic attraction area at the Kongeparken in Stavanger, one of Scandinavia’s foremost theme parks, is a celebration of the children’s character ‘Little Grey Fergie’ (Gråtass) which is based on an original Ferguson TE20 tractor.
Against stiff international competition, the team behind Gråtassland were thrilled to receive the Thea Award for New Park Land on a Limited Budget.
Over the last 20 years the original story of Little Grey Fergie’s adventures, written by Morten Myklebust, has grown into several television series, two feature films, ten music albums, live shows and more than 15 books.
Inspired by this success, Gråtassland opened in 2014. It was an instant hit and has been drawing big crowds ever since.
The Thea jury commented: “The charming Little Grey Fergie Land engages adults and children alike. It immerses them in the world of the Little Grey Fergie and is an ideal mix of real environments and fantasy. It celebrates history, modern times and fantasy – all with a goal of entertaining, and teaching about animals, farming and the importance of taking care of our environment…….This is a tremendous success that never strays from the story or the goal of the project.”
Håkon Lund, CEO of Kongeparken said: “It’s a great honour to receive the award and gain this recognition for our work. In designing Gråtassland, our aim was to engage visitors by changing the focus away from the attraction, to the experience. At its heart is an exciting tractor ride wrapped up in the tale of a much-loved icon telling the story of the Massey Ferguson Brand and its history.”
The international Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) and its awards were created to recognize achievement and talent at visitor attractions and experiences in the leisure and travel sector.
Find out more on Gråtassland at www.kongeparken.no
You can watch the live-action series at www.littlegreyfergie.com
Massey Ferguson is to update the MF 3600 range in both its Standard and Specialised formats. This will bring the range in line with the current Massey Ferguson styling, and also incorporate a number of new features which have been developed in order to meet the needs of the market.
The tractors from 69-102hp have proved extremely popular on livestock and mixed farms, and in their specialised format, for vineyards, fruit farms and growers of vegetables, salads and other specialist crops.
Rear linkage lift capacity has been increased to maximum of 3 tonnes, allowing a wider range of implements to be operated.
Steering angle has been increased as a result of redesigning the front support on the Specialised models, and is now up to 40.5 deg on the MF 3600GE version, offering easier turning in polytunnels and tight vineyard and orchard layouts.
Tractors in the MF 3600 V/S/F/GE ranges will benefit from revised styling to bring their appearance in line with the rest of the Massey Ferguson range and provide the same attractive look.
Updates include a new roof and grey side panels bringing the sleek family styling to these specialised machines. Appearance and functionality is enhanced with new oval bar lights, work and turning lights.
Models in the MF 3600 Standard Range also get the new roof, plus new oval turning and position lights and new mid-working lights.
Inside the cab, new colours and trim have been incorporated to correspond to other Massey Ferguson models.
A new indicator lever improves the control and comfort of operation as it activates seven lighting and alert functions and a battery switch is now specified.
Optional equipment includes a radio with LCD screen, MP3 compatibility via an SD card or USB link and the facility to store favourite stations. Memory back-up protects stored settings in the event of the battery being disconnected.
Production will begin on the new tractors in September 2015 and the updates will be previewed at SIMA.
Campbell Scott, Director, Sales Engineering and MF Brand Development said: “Updating the MF 3600 gives this very popular tractor the true Massey Ferguson family style plus a number of improvements that will make its operation even more user-friendly and efficient.”