I know everyone is still in the fields working to get the new crop planted. Steel and labor shortages and transportation issues have created a grain equipment situation we have not seen in many years.

New grain storage and equipment prices have increased as much as 25% in the past months to cover the increased costs of raw materials. Transportation surcharges have also been added to cover the increased costs of shipping. Steel and labor shortages have pushed manufacturer lead times for new grain bins and equipment into fall and winter.

At this time, portable dryers, fans and heaters can be tested to avoid start-up problems when harvest begins. It is better to discover problems now when there is time to obtain parts and repair rather than waiting until harvest and being unable to load the dryer with wet grain when a delay of only a day can result in spoiled grain.

GROWMARK has stocked fans, heaters and common replacement parts for bin unloaders, portable dryers and bin dryers at its distribution centers. We have also encouraged our member cooperatives to stock these items for a local and immediate supply.

Have your grain system in ready–to-go condition now. The longer you wait, the more difficult it will be. Make up your mind now, and get your needed parts ordered and repairs scheduled. Your spring rush will be much less stressful knowing that everything will be ready and working when harvest time arrives.

Don Fuller serves as GROWMARK Customer Service manager, Grain Systems. He can be reached at dfuller@growmark.com.