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Farmers equipped with fatter wallets view new Deere skid loader, other ag machinery

Thursday, February 10, 2011

An ag show in Central California featured farming equipment well within reach thanks to commodities' high prices.
An ag show in Central California featured farming equipment well within reach thanks to commodities' high prices.

A new piece of machinery unveiled by the world's largest farm equipment manufacturer at the world's largest farm equipment show likely is within the reach of more farmers because of soaring commodity prices, according to a published report.

The Central California city of Tulare hosted the World Ag Expo on a 60-acre plot of land as farmers bandied about since prices for the goods they till, harvest and market are soaring. One focus of attention was the new skid loader manufactured by John Deere, as was other machinery that farmers now are better able to afford.

"Business is better than last year," event spokesman Steven Knudsen told the Los Angeles Times. "When people are smiling, you know that things are good."

Agricultural exports will notch a record amount of $126.5 billion for fiscal year 2011, according to a U.S. Agricultural Department forecast. That figure represents an increase of $13.5 billion as compared to projections issued last summer and $17.8 billion more than figures from 2010.

"When times are good, you have to invest in your operation," said 52-year-old Harlan Reese, a corn and wheat farmer from Illinois. "It's expensive to farm right now. But times are still good."

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